Scholarships Help Student with Career Change
At 50 years old, Jae Cha is halfway through the Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) program at North Central State College. In 2014, Cha decided to get his GED in the Adult Education program at 42. Soon after he enrolled in classes at North Central. “It was something I never dreamed I would do, but thanks to a wonderful scholarship opportunity from the North Central State College Foundation, I decided that gift was my sign to continue on to get my associate degree,” Cha says proudly.
In 2018, Cha graduated from North Central with his associate degree as a Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA). “The Foundation was an excellent resource for me during that time and helped me financially through the program,” Cha explains. While employed as a PTA through OhioHealth, he worked closely with the nursing staff every day. “When I had the opportunity to return to school again to be a nurse with the help of OhioHealth and North Central, I decided that was something I really wanted to accomplish,” he says.
OhioHealth and North Central State College Foundation have partnered to provide an amazing professional development opportunity for OhioHealth employees. This program, which trains employees to become Licensed Practical Nurses, provides support while meeting the needs of those in the program.
Cha currently works as a full-time PTA during the day, while going to school at night and clinicals on the weekends. “I am extremely grateful that this program exists for people like me. Receiving this scholarship changed the path of my career in the health field, and that means everything to me,” Cha says.
“This program has inspired me to return to school at my age to eventually become an RN,” Cha says.
Once Cha has completed his LPN certificate he plans to return to the Registered Nursing Program at North Central next year. “I’ve always thought about furthering my education. The generosity from the Foundation made it a no-brainer for me.” The combination of PTA and nursing will provide unique skills in two in-demand fields. Cha is excited to continue his growth as a professional.
“With my LPN certificate, I would like to continue my journey with OhioHealth, be a part of their nursing team, and continue my journey with patient care,” Cha explains.
“I love having the ability to help people who are having health issues and being able to be a part of their recovery process. I currently help mobilize patients to get them up and moving after an injury, but hopefully I can do more for them as a nurse.”