Eric Burke

San Diego College of Continuing Education

Nominated in 2021


The educational experience and clinical learning at San Diego College of Continuing Education (SDCCE), a hub for free workforce training, qualified graduate Eric Burke to work for the U.S. Government.

Prior to working in healthcare, Eric was a grocery store employee with little opportunity for financial growth and promotion. Eric's mom, a Registered Nurse at Kaiser Permanente, encouraged her son to make the career change. The absence of tuition fees at SDCCE also helped his decision to go back to school after earning an associate degree from Grossmont College.

Eric completed SDCCE's Nursing Assistant certificate program. The 16-week course prepares students for the state CNA examination and provides opportunity for clinical rotations at local hospitals and healthcare facilities. Graduates become certified as a Nurse Assistant by the State of California and can work in rehabilitation and long-term care facilities.

New graduates are submitting their job applications alongside millions of Americans who lost their employment due to the COVID crisis, so standing out is a requirement to enter the workforce.

Eric completed his clinical hours at Kindred Hospital and at St. Paul's Senior Services Nursing and Rehabilitation. Following SDCCE, he was hired as a CNA at Sharp HealthCare and now works in public health administration for the County of San Diego where he supports front line workers responding to the Coronavirus.

San Diego College of Continuing Education Website External link opens in new window or tab.