I'm going to take a risk here and suggest Cichlids, as long as you are careful with which breeds she picks. I've kept and bred Cichlids for ten years now and find them to be much easier than bettas. In fact, the first Cichlid I ever got is still alive, which is pretty common, life spans are between 5 and 20 years. They are relatively hardy fish, I've only had to treat for disease twice in ten years. I started with Cichlids because I lived in an area with hard water and needed something not as sensitive to lower quality water.
Cichlids are divided into African and South American varieties. They CANNOT be mixed. I'm going to suggest African because I'm more familiar.
As a beginner wanting to build a community tank she will need to stick with the least aggressive Cichlid breeds. You can get away with a highly aggressive or two as long as the rest of your tank is peaceful. Also she should consider their final size, because Cichlids can get big, like up to a foot. Stick with anything less than six inches.
You'll need at a minimum a 25 gallon tank with a filter and a heater. You want a tank that is long horizontally because Cichlids prefer to stay near the bottom. In terms of decorations they prefer more caves and rocks, less plants.
Tank cleaning is once a week, can be pushed out to twice a week without major consequences once the fish are older and more durable. Wipe the sides with an algae sponge, 40% water changes should be done using a gravel vacuum, and rinse or change the filter.
They should be fed every day, but can definitely go a few days in between feedings. I've gone on vacation for two weeks before and left one of the feeder pyramids in while I was gone, and everyone was fine upon return.
You'll also need an algae eater. In my experience the only ones that will survive in a Cichlid tank is a Raphael. He doesn't need to be fed everyday either, but they are nocturnal so he'll need his food at night.
In terms of good beginning Cichlids that can be found at most pet stores I would suggest these:
Labs: They come in Yellow, White and Blue. They're one of the most peaceful varieties, and only grow to about five inches.
Peacock: These are most varied in color. They are normally born a brown and as they mature can turn purple, orange, red, and blue. These range from peaceful to mildly aggressive and are between five and seven inches at full growth.
Red Zebras: These are on the list because they're the most commonly sold variety of Cichlids at places like Petco. They're more aggressive, though also much easier to keep alive. Only about five inches in adulthood.