WESTMINSTER, Colo. — When schools closed throughout Colorado due to the pandemic, instructors from Destinations Career Academy of Colorado in Westminster hit the road to make sure their certified nursing assistant (CNA) students completed their lab hours.
“What we’ve done this year, because we have students that live all over the state, is we loaded up a U-Haul. Our nurse who teaches that lab is key in loading up that U-Haul, and she travels around the state to help support our students,” said Destinations Career Academy Head of School Teri Cady.
But Cady said the U-Haul was not a permanent solution for distance learning.
“So, we are launching what we’re calling a mobile lab where we’ll have a vehicle, like an RV that we’ll gut and turn it into its own little medical lab facility,” Cady said.
The lab will continue traveling to students' homes to make sure they get the lab hours they need before beginning their clinical rotations and begin working in the medical field at local hospitals and nursing homes.
But Cady said even after the pandemic is over, the mobile unit will continue to operate.
“It certainly is born out of the pandemic in some ways, but in other ways it’s just a necessity for the way our school operates all of the time,” Cady said.
The mobile lab will officially be up and running for the 2021-2022 school year.