The Community Health Worker Professional Skills training is delivered as five asynchronous courses (approximately 30 hours) that are available on-demand at the learner’s convenience. In addition to the recorded training, learners will complete quizzes, assignments, and participate in four live, virtual learning discussion sessions.

Successful completion of the CHW Professional Skills Training earns a non-credit certificate from the Des Moines Area Community College and a competency certificate from the Iowa Chronic Care Consortium.

CHW Professional Skills Training $988 per person.


The CHW Professional Skills can also be accessed as part of a U.S. Department of Labor-approved Registered Apprenticeship program for Iowa residents. While the training curriculum is the same with either option, there are additional requirements of the organizations enrolling a CHW through the Registered Apprenticeship program. Successful completion of the Professional Skills Training and the CHW Registered Apprenticeship results in the above-referenced certificates plus a national credential as a Community Health Worker that is issued by the U.S. Department of Labor.

CHW Professional Skills plus Registered Apprenticeship Program $2,500 per person.

This skills-based course includes five courses covering the following topics:

Course 1: Introduction to Community Health Work: The Big Picture

Course 2: Core Competencies for Providing Direct Services

Course 3: Enhancing Client Interactions



Course 4: Enhancing Professional Skills

Course 5: Applying Core Competencies to Key Health Issues

To learn more about CHW Professional Skills Training or CHW Registered Apprenticeship, contact Deb Kazmerzak at or 515.554.3788.

For unique opportunities for Iowa residents, please visit

what exactly is a Community Health Worker?

Community Health Worker (CHW) is an umbrella term.Their job titles are as diverse as the communities, sites and roles in which CHWs serve. CHWs focus on improving individual and community health and health access.They forge connections where people live, learn, work, worship and heal, from the inner city to rural communities. (

Just as CHW job titles vary, so do the roles, populations of focus and specific responsibilities.

However, roles tend to fall within the following:

One thing is well known—CHWs are a rapidly growing component of the healthcare workforce in this country. The U.S. Department of Labor anticipates an 18% increase in the CHW workforce between 2016-2026, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. (U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics)

What is Driving the Growth of the CHW Role?

Why is CHW Training Important?

The educational background of the CHWs is varied, ranging from high school to college level graduates. The CHW is often hired for their “soft skills” of relationship-building, cultural competence, and connection or experience with the target population. The complex knowledge and skills of healthcare engagement and navigation are new to most, as is the dynamic of operating within a team-based environment.

Most professions, particularly in healthcare, require training in order to achieve and/or maintain certification or licensure. As an emerging workforce, in many areas of the country there are limited or no requirements for CHWs. To ensure CHWs are skilled and effective in their work, payers, health systems and community-based organizations are increasingly seeking and investing in training CHWs.This training meets the national standard for Department of Labor Registered CHW Apprenticeship.