Looking for a meaningful in demand profession with good wages and opportunities for advancement? If so, consider entering the clinical research profession.

Despite the many different clinical research roles, a common entry point into the profession is as a clinical research coordinator (CRC). A CRC is an individual who works at a clinical research site under the direction of a principal investigator and is responsible for coordinating daily clinical trial activities while adhering to the Good Clinical Practice (GCP) guidelines.

Entry Level CRC Foundations Training

Sponsored by Bristol Myers Squibb’s (BMS’s) Organization for Latino Achievement (OLA) and the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) participants of the MCA’s Clinical Trial Academy Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) Foundations course will be trained following the curriculum developed by the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP). This class is perfectly aligned with the required core competencies a CRC will need in a clinical setting.

Course Description:
• A blended approach of combined self-study followed by instructor-led sessions that can be attended either virtually or in person at the MCA Cardwell Collaborative.
• Designed to provide the foundational competencies for CRCs.
• Focuses on the role an entry-level CRC will play at a clinical research site.
• Ideal for new or entry-level CRCs with less than one year of experience, or for those who have never received any formal CRC training.

• 24/7 on demand access to ACRP’s eLearning portal.
• 15 required eLearning modules.
• 11, 1.5-hour training sessions, held once a week and taught by experienced CRC instructors.

Who Should Apply?
• Students, job/career seekers, military veterans.
• Healthcare providers.

Eligibility Criteria:
• Residents of West Texas and Southern New Mexico.
• Be 18-years or older with at least a high school degree.
• Must be willing to complete the training within 1-year of enrolling.

• Will be provided upon successful completion of 15-eLearning modules, good course attendance, and final exam.

• Applications are currently being accepted and the schedule is found in the link below.

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Meet your CRC Instructors

Catherine Posey-Sariñan

Western Sky Medical Research

Laura Herrera

Western Sky Medical Research

Sergio Guerrero, MD


Anna Yvonne Rodriguez

Egality Sciences, LLC

Allen Savedra

ICON Strategic Solutions

Wenoah Veikley

AXCES Research & Health


What is a Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC)?

A CRC is an individual who works at a clinical research site under the direction of a principal investigator and is responsible for coordinating daily clinical trial activities while adhering to the Good Clinical Practice (GCP) guidelines.

What can I expect if I enroll in the CRC Core Competency Program?

The CRC Core Competency lesson plan has been designed to provide the foundational competencies required for clinical research coordinators (CRCs) and is ideal for the new CRC. Highlights of the program include:

1) A blended approach of eLearning self-study, with facilitated web or face-to-face sessions:
• The ACRP has optimized this program to deliver online content in a format this is effective and efficient - utilizing valuable trainer/classroom time for more complex concepts that require discussion and interactivity. This approach ensures all participants not only learn key concepts but are able to interpret and apply them while functioning as a CRC.
• This format allows students to learn at their own pace.

2) An understanding of the foundational competencies a CRC needs to support the Principal Investigator’s (PI) responsibilities during clinical research.
• These competencies are cross referenced against ACRP’s Entry Level CRC Competency Development and Assessment Roadmap to confirm their importance for entry level CRCs.
• These competencies are also categorized by those that can be developed through training vs. those that need to be developed through on-the-job experience and mentoring.
• Note: Medical Care, Systems Training, Site SOPs, HIPAA, specimen collection and management, equipment calibration, budget and financial management, and other training can be added as an organization requires. Our training covers the ICH GCP competencies organized by the Joint Task Force (JTF) for Clinical Trial Competency framework.

3) 15 ACRP eLearning/simulation modules, dozens of robust regulatory references and guidelines, and many supportive infographics that will help students learn the role of a CRC. These resources will also be helpful with the discussions and interactions during the instructor led live/virtual sessions.

4) 11, 90 minute live coaching sessions offered once a week, led by local experienced trainers.

5) A Certificate of Completion upon passing the ACRP’s competency based Entry Level Knowledge Assessment (ELKA) test - a 50 question, on-line assessment to confirm foundational knowledge in CRC competencies.

When is your next CRC Cohort?

We typically offer applicants the opportunity to take the CTA CRC Foundations course during one of three (3) separate cohorts held during Spring, Summer, and Fall semesters. Instructor led sessions typically occur 1X/week for up to 11 weeks on Wednesday evening from 6-7:30 PM.

Is there a fee associated with the training?

No. The training is FREE to all enrolled participants.

What are the criteria used to select applicants for the CRC training program?

Qualified applicants must be at least 18-years old with a High School degree and reside in West Texas or Southern New Mexico. Applicants are also expected to complete the training within one year of enrolling.

What are the qualifications needed to get a job as a CRC?

Typically, a bachelor’s degree is required, preferably in a science or health-related field of study, but it is not necessary. The ACRP CRC training available through this program provides a competitive advantage when applying for CRC positions.

Am I able to receive on-the-job training?

The MCA’s Clinical Trial Academy working with Workforce Solutions Borderplex (WSB) currently provides a limited number of paid, on-the-job training opportunities in our region. In addition to this, many sites provide on-the-job training in conjunction with some classroom training.

How do I advance my clinical research career?

Once you gain sufficient experience as a CRC, you can advance to many different clinical research roles. One such role is the role of a Site Manager. Site Managers oversee all aspects of clinical trials for their location and may even manage other trial sites, with the CRCs for all sites reporting to them. The ACRP provides a Clinical Research Career Lattice for additional information about professional advancement opportunities. Finally, those with a BA or higher are likely to advance more quickly.

What are the core competency professional guidelines for CRCs?

The ACRP, in collaboration with the Joint Task Force for Clinical Trial Competency, has developed a series of domains and guidelines that provide a framework for the knowledge, skills, and attributes necessary for a successful CRC. Clinical trial sites should familiarize themselves with these domains and guidelines to promote the quality and standardization of the profession and to ensure research professionals receive the training that has been vetted by industry professionals. CRCs can also use the ACRP’s Core Competency Guidelines for self-assessment, competence gap analysis, and creating personalized professional development plans.

What is the certification process for a CRC?

Upon completion of the CRC Training course, you will receive a Certificate of Completion. After that, and after a few years of practical experience as a CRC, you will become eligible to take an exam and become a certified CRC. One’s level of education can reduce the amount of experience and/or requirements needed to be eligible to take the CRC certification exam. Professional certification is available through The Society of Clinical Research Associates (SoCRA) and The Association for Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP).

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