Career Training with I-BEST


Looking for a Meaningful Career?

The Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training (I-BEST) Program at SFCC provides you with career pathways for healthcare or early childhood education. You will learn job-related skills while you strengthen your reading, writing, and math abilities.

You can build your career and academic skills at the same time, reducing the number of semesters you need to be in school before you graduate and are prepared for your new career.

What is I-BEST?

What’s in it for you? In 1 to 3 semesters you can:

  • Complete a college certificate
  • Receive job placement support upon completion
  • Improve your reading, writing, math, and English skills
  • Get your High School Equivalency (if you need one)
  • Earn credits towards an associate degree.

I-BEST will provide:

  • A study plan designed for your busy schedule
  • The opportunity to prepare for a career in a high-demand job area
  • Individual attention and advising with career and academic planning
  • Financial aid guidance and support
  • Improved computer skills
  • User-friendly adult education classes and tutoring
  • Connection with a group of adult classmates in a safe and comfortable learning community.

I-BEST Certificate Programs:

Nursing Assistant
This one-semester program prepares you to enter the nursing profession as an entry-level nursing assistant. Upon successful completion of this certificate, you will meet all federal certification standards for a nursing assistant and be prepared to sit for the New Mexico Nurse Aide Registry exams. Class credits apply toward an Associate Degree in Medical Assisting should you wish to continue your studies.

This one-semester program is designed to provide you with the necessary skills for gainful employment as a phlebotomist, working under the supervision of a clinical laboratory supervisor. The phlebotomist is responsible for the proper collection, processing and testing of blood specimens and various other medical samples in accordance with OSHA safety regulations and standards. Upon successful completion of this program, you will be eligible to apply for the national licensing examination through the American Society for Clinical Pathology. Class credits apply toward an Associate Degree in Medical Assisting should you wish to continue your studies.

Medical Assisting
This three-semester program encompasses the competencies needed to become a professional medical assistant. Specific education includes performing administrative and clinical procedures in settings such as physician offices, clinics and ambulatory settings. Courses are sequenced to build skill level. Medical assisting is a growing occupation in New Mexico and the U.S. This program of study is oriented to students who have an aptitude for organization and health care systems. Class credits apply toward an Associate Degree in Medical Assisting.

Early Childhood Development
This three-semester certificate provides you with the course work necessary to apply for a New Mexico Child Development Certificate, a state-awarded certificate for early childhood teachers. The New Mexico CDC has been created to meet the entry-level professional requirements for teachers who are already working in a classroom setting with preschool children. The New Mexico CDC exceeds the requirements of the national CDA credential. It is particularly designed to assist Head Start and Early Head Start programs meet the interim staff qualification requirements. All Certificate course credits apply toward an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education should you wish to continue your studies.

Community Health Worker
This two-semester program prepares students to enter the healthcare profession as an entry-level Community Health Worker. Community Health Workers are also known as Community Health Representatives, Patient Navigators or Patient Service Representatives. They function as patient advocates and educators in clinics, hospitals and managed care organizations. This certificate program includes the 11 established competencies required for state certification. Program completion enables students to qualify for the New Mexico state certification for Community Health Workers.

Steps for New Student Registration:

  1. Make an appointment for an initial interview with the I-BEST Program Coordinator. The Coordinator will discuss program details and help you determine which classes will further your career goals.
  2. Fill out and return your I-BEST application or fill out the application online.
  3. Make a follow-up appointment with the I-BEST Program Coordinator.  The Coordinator will review your test scores, determine if you qualify for the program and walk you through the entire process of applying for college, enrolling in classes, and finding financial aid.

For more information, please contact I-BEST Coordinator Gwen Spatzier at 505-428-1437 or or the Adult Education Office at 505-428-1356 or