News & Events

CNA graduates earn certification; new program gets underway this fall

Date: 08/20/2021

Marie London of Mars Hill is one of six recent graduates from the CNA training program offered by Northern Light AR Gould Hospital and MSAD 42 Adult Education.  All six have successfully achieved certification in their field.  A new CNA course will be offered again this fall.

Presque Isle, Maine (August 19, 2021) — Northern Light AR Gould Hospital in Presque Isle and Northern Light Continuing Care in Mars Hill are pleased to announce that the six students who recently graduated from their unique Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) training program have all successfully achieved state certification. 


“We are excited, but certainly not surprised, with the success of this group of talented, dedicated individuals,” said Kelly Lundeen, executive director of Continuing Care. “Five of these graduates are now employed at our facility in a full- or part-time capacity.”


Both the hospital and the long-term care facility continue to have a shortage of trained CNAs, and they implemented this program to help “grow our own” according to Odette Lee, RN, coordinator of the program.  The training program, offered in conjunction with MSAD 42 Adult Education, is unique in that it allows participants to work full-time and be guaranteed a position after graduation.  It is also streamlined and geared towards rapid completion.


Participants have three options for how they want to take part in the program.  For the first two options, the program is free and participants are paid as temporary employees while they are training. The difference between the two is whether they make a one year commitment working full-time or a two-year commitment working part-time at Continuing Care in Mars Hill.  For the third option, participants can pay the tuition for the course and do not have any commitment to work for Northern Light Health after completion.


“The course overall was enticing. I love to learn and try new things, and this course gave me the ability to fulfill that desire. The instructors were all absolutely amazing. They made learning something new fun and exciting, all the while making a lasting impression. All of my classmates were intellectual individuals who also made the course enjoyable and being able to transition from class to work with them all has been wonderful,” said Marie London of Mars Hill, one of the graduates. 


London is now working full-time at Continuing Care in Mars Hill, and she credits the course and her career change with providing her self-esteem, personal growth, and a sense of purpose.


“I enjoy and admire helping others in need. The fulfillment that it gives within is unlike any feeling I have come to know,” she said.


Graduates of the program in addition to London were:  Gabriella Ayotte and sisters Brittany and Ashley Jones, all of Ashland; Ashley Crowley of Easton; and Chelsea Levesque of Caribou.


Another seven-week CNA training course is schedule to begin on Monday, October 4.  Applications will be accepted now through September 2.  Interviews of applicants is planned for September 7.


For those considering taking the course, London has this advice:


“Do it!  I certainly had my doubts about it, but I have never been more satisfied with making such a choice out of my comfort zone. Everyday is different when working as a CNA. You get to meet new people and the diversity of those around you is ever changing. Working in continuing care allows you to build one-on-one relationships with the residents and a connection with those whom you are involved in working with every day. You work side-by-side with registered nurses and those from other medical fields and in doing so this could open your mind to opportunities to further your education. Choosing to become a CNA gives you the opportunity to make an impact not only just on your own life, but the lives of others. Being able to do so is simply indescribable, and I hope that everyone is able to experience this at least once in their lifetime!”


Those who are interested in learning more about the upcoming CNA course can contact Odette Lee, RN, BSN, at or 768-4655.