Alex Delaney-Gesing
Features Editor

In Elyria as well as Lorain County, sufficient caretakers trained in the child-rearing field are in high demand. In response to the demand, both stay-at-home and working parents are seeking qualified employees. As a solution to this problem, Lorain County Community College created the Nanny Academy, an Early Childhood Education program.

Established in 2013, this 16-week program provides students with the capability to assist childrens development in physical, social, intellectual, creative and emotional growth in a healthy and safe environment, according to the program’s page on LCCC’s website.

“We want students to have real-life experience so it’s not only the classroom but hands on experience as well,” said Dr. Kathleen Head, coordinator of the early childhood education program.

Students earning an associates degree in early childhood education can complete the Nanny certificate by taking only two classes in addition to the required courses.

The program requires that students be enrolled in classes four days a week, with Fridays being reserved for traveling to an assigned family’s home in order to have hands-on experience.

“I think that students need to make themselves more versatile, not by just getting the associates degree in early childhood, but I think they need to add the nanny program, the administration certificate,” said Head.

As a result of completing the program, a Professional Nanny Academy Short Term Technical certificate is awarded to students in recognition of completing the core early childhood education courses in addition to the Professional Nanny courses. Both accomplishments total an accumulation of 22 credit hours. These additional courses include The Professional Nanny (ECED 160) and Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation CPR (HLED 154).

“The course I teach [ECED 160] is designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to be a professional childcare specialist [as well as the] opportunity to interact with children, communicate, with family members and work on time management and guidance techniques [in] a private family home,” said instructor and Education Specialist Mariana Spanu.

“Students taking this class are expected to gain the communication and social interaction skills they need to perform as professional nannies.”

Julienne Gigliotti, a recent LCCC graduate who received her associate of applied science in early childhood education also earned the Professional Nanny Academy Short Term Technical Certificate. As a result of the program, she has been able to earn a living.

“[Completing the program] has helped tremendously,” she said, “I have a full-time job from it with four different clients.”

The hands-on training students receive by spending an allotment of hours per week at the home of a volunteer family not only provides them with valuable experience, but can also prove helpful for the family as well.

“It is a beneficial experience on many levels. The nanny provides help and support to me during the day with the children,” said Kate Davalla, the mother of a family that has previously and is currently serving as a Practicum family of the Nanny Academy.

“[They] engage in a variety of different activities with our children [and] develop a strong emotional connection with them, which we truly appreciate.”

Participating in the Nanny program is something that can prove to be useful for students as they further their career in the early childhood field.
“[Students]  need to make themselves more versatile, not by just getting the associate’s degree in early childhood, but I think they need to add the nanny program and certificate so that it gives them a lot of opportunity to do different things in early childhood,” said Head.

To learn more about LCCC’s Nanny Academy and Professional Nanny Academic Short Term Technical Certificate, contact Dr. Kathleen Head at

For a full list of eligibility requirements and an application to apply to the program, visit LCCC’s website under the associate degrees and academic programs tab.