Professional Development

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Many professional development opportunities are available throughout the year in New Mexico.

New Mexico Interpreters Distribution List

NMCDHH administers an email distribution list for signed language interpreters to share professional development opportunities, job postings, licensure updates, and other relevant information. If you are interested in being added to the distribution list, please email Lisa Dignan at  If you have something you would like to share with the interpreting community, please send it to the same address to be forwarded to the list.

NMCDHH Apprentice Program

NMCDHH runs a very small part-time in-house apprentice program for pre-certified interpreters working toward national certification.  Participants are selected via an application process each year. The program is designed to supplement other community or educational interpreting work. Some hours are paid, while others are on a volunteer basis. At the end of the one-year apprenticeship, participants must pay to take a nationally recognized certification exam. Announcements are sent out to the community when applications are being accepted.  The number of apprentices accepted is dependent upon funding availability.


The New Mexico Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (NMRID) hosts occasional workshops and maintains a central calendar of professional development events on their website. They offer a significant discount on registration to members. Check out their website for more information.


The New Mexico School for the Deaf (NMSD) provides professional development opportunities specifically for K-12 interpreters. Workshops are statewide, regional and district-specific. K-12 interpreters can benefit from on-site support and statewide events. Visit the NMSD website for more information.

Additional Professional Development for Interpreters

The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) holds national conferences biannually and regional conferences in the alternating years. Information can be found on their website and through the RID searchable database. Click on “Search Tools” from the main page, then “Find a Workshop” and enter New Mexico.

Other organizations provide professional development opportunities that can be accessed on site, via the internet, or on DVDs. Check out the following links for more options:


New Mexico Mentoring

New Mexico Mentoring is a program designed to support the continuing development of signed language interpreters throughout New Mexico. Mentors (Deaf and hearing) are paired with interpreters who want to improve their skills, and the pair works with a structured 16-week curriculum that addresses specific skill sets. The curricula are written by experts in the field and guide the mentors and mentees through the process. Participants are required to attend a training and orientation meeting at the beginning of the session, then the rest of the program is conducted asynchronously – so mentors and mentees from around New Mexico can participate from their homes at times that are convenient for them. Each curriculum requires approximately 4-6 hours of work per week. Participants may earn up to 2.0 RID CEUs, and rural interpreters are given selection preference. Sessions run January–May and August–December each year.

For more information, please contact Lisa Dignan at

Six curricula are currently available:

ASL to English Interpretation: Self Analysis Skills

This curriculum is designed to assist interpreters in improving their ASL to English interpreting skills. This includes techniques for critically analyzing the success of an interpretation, increasing theoretical understanding of ASL to English interpreting, building prediction skills, expanding meta-linguistic skills to effectively discuss interpreting, and recognizing strengths and remediating weaknesses in interpreting work.

Preparation Skills for Interpreters

This curriculum is designed to help interpreters be prepared for a variety of interpreting assignments in community and educational environments. It covers such topics as Demand-Control Schema, text analysis, business practices, team interpreting, working with a Deaf presenter, and more!

Perspectives on Educational Interpreting

An in depth exploration of educational interpreting, designed for interpreters with some educational experience or formal training. This curriculum will assist educational interpreters in meeting New Mexico Interpreter Licensure requirements. Topics range from basic self-assessment practice to detailed EIPA preparation.

Fingerspelling and Numbering Systems

The focus of this workbook is to enhance the mentee‘s knowledge and skills with ASL fingerspelling and number systems and to assist in incorporating these features into ASL interpretations. Activities promote critical thinking and self-analysis as related to fingerspelling and numbers.

Mental Health Interpreting – for Certified interpreters only

Certified interpreters who have mental health interpreting experience and those who are interested in mental health interpreting can benefit from this exciting curriculum. It covers topics including mental health settings, practitioners, consumers, and the work’s impact on the interpreter.

Medical Interpreting – for experienced interpreters only

Certified interpreters wishing to learn more about interpreting in medical settings will benefit from this curriculum that covers vocabulary, best practices, and provides resources to become a competent and confident medical interpreter.