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RCSJ CHIP Program Catapults Single Mom into Healthcare Career

Sabrina Ruiz of Millville intends to flourish in her new career as Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) after she receives her certification from Rowan College of South Jersey (RCSJ). Ruiz, the single mother of a five-month-old son, recently completed courses from the college’s highly regarded Cumberland Hospitality Industry Program (CHIP).

CHIP is a fully grant-funded program created to elevate youth employment in Cumberland County. The program consists of job readiness and occupational skills training through the National Retail Federation curriculum and job placement follow-up support.

Ruiz is appreciative of the benefits CHIP provides for its students. “The instructor teaches us things to help us pass our tests and other things we’re going to need to know in our fields of work,” she explained. For example, through the program, Ruiz and her classmates gained valuable knowledge by having the opportunity to get vital hands-on experience at Genesis HealthCare in Millville.

“Another good thing about the CHIP program is they help you line up a job,” said Ruiz, who aspires to become a dental hygienist in the future. “Like me, I have a position lined up at Inspira when I receive my certificate.”

Discovering that CHIP, a program offered through RCSJ’s Career & Technical Education division, places students in jobs upon completion of the course was an integral element to the new mother’s decision-making process.

“Another reason why I did the CHIP program is so I wouldn’t have to work two jobs after having a baby,” Ruiz revealed. “As a single mom, it’s very exciting to have this opportunity.”