Area: Mental Health

Sub-Area:

  • Individual and Group Counseling
  • Case Management
  • Medication Monitoring
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Program Planning
  • Administration

Employers:

  • Residential treatment facilities
  • In/Outpatient psychiatric care units
  • Mobile crisis units
  • Hospitals
  • Behavioral health programs
  • Social service agencies
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Religious and pastoral organizations
  • Hospices
  • Child guidance clinics
  • Family planning centers
  • Adult service programs
  • Group homes
  • Public and private schools
  • Local, state, and federal government agencies including:
    • Armed Forces
    • Department of Child and Family Services
    • Department of Corrections
    • Department of Human Services
    • Department of Mental Health
    • Department of Justice
    • Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Private or group practices
  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)

Strategies & Information:

  • Gain practical experience with children, families, and individuals with mental health issues.
  • Become familiar with government and community resources available for those in need.
  • Volunteer with a local social service or non-profit organization to test interests.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow professionals in a variety of fields.
  • Participate in community events to become familiar with local organizations and community members.
  • Develop strong communication skills and the desire to help others.
  • Learn to work well with different types of people.
  • Cultivate multicultural competence.
  • Develop ability to work well under pressure and manage stress.
  • Research government hiring procedures.
  • Obtain certification as a Mental Health Service Provider (MHSP) and/or a Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CCMHC).
  • Consult the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) for state licensure requirements.

Area: Marriage and Family Therapy

Sub-Area:

  • Pre-marital Counseling
  • Couples' Counseling
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Divorce Mediation
  • Sexual Counseling
  • Child/Spousal Abuse Counseling

Employers:

  • Private or group practice
  • Local, state, and federal government agencies
  • Social service agencies
  • Religious and pastoral organizations
  • Hospitals

Strategies & Information:

  • Gain practical experience with children and families.
  • Acquire knowledge of group dynamics and stressors unique to families.
  • Develop skills in conflict mediation.
  • Cultivate multicultural competence and an understanding of how values may impact practice.
  • Obtain certification as a Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT).

Area: School Counseling

Sub-Area:

  • Elementary
  • Middle School
  • High School
  • College/Career Planning
  • Student Services

Employers:

  • Public and private schools, K-12
  • Departments of Education

Strategies & Information:

  • Gain experience through mentoring, tutoring, or volunteering with a school based organization.
  • Acquire knowledge of stressors unique to children and families.
  • Plan to collaborate with multidisciplinary teams including teachers, social workers, school administrators, therapists, and others.
  • Become familiar with various assessments and evaluations utilized in educational settings.
  • Obtain certification as a school counselor (NCSC).
  • Consult ASCA for state certification requirements.

Area: School Education

Sub-Area:

  • Teaching
  • Administration
  • Student Support Services
  • Program Development
  • Program Evaluation

Employers:

  • Colleges and universities:
    • Academic departments
    • Student affairs units
    • Research centers
    • Counseling centers

Strategies & Information:

  • Obtain a PhD to teach in post-secondary schools.
  • Specialize or take additional courses in college student personnel for student affairs positions.
  • Complete an internship or graduate assistantship in a college setting to be competitive for jobs.
  • Develop strong communication and writing skills.
  • Assist faculty members with research projects.
  • Develop strong background in statistics and research for higher education program development and evaluation.
  • Join professional associations and attend relevant conferences.

Area: Career Counseling

Sub-Area:

  • Individual and/or Group Counseling
  • Assessment
  • Career Planning
  • Job Searching
  • Employee Evaluation
  • Program Development
  • Out Placement

Employers:

  • Large corporations
  • Colleges and universities
  • Vocational schools
  • Government agencies including:
    • Armed forces
    • One Stop Career Centers
    • Employment offices
  • Career development centers
  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
  • Private practice

Strategies & Information:

  • Obtain practical experience through part-time or summer jobs, internships, assistantships, or volunteering in a career center or employment agency.
  • Learn to work well with different types of people.
  • Develop strong communication skills.
  • Acquire knowledge of effective interviewing and resume writing skills.
  • Investigate a wide variety of careers, areas of study, and related assessment tools.
  • Become familiar with government and community resources available for those in need.
  • Seek certification on various assessments.
  • Become familiar with government hiring procedures.
  • Join the National Career Development Association and apply for Master Career Counselor (MCC) status.

Area: Rehabilitation

Sub-Area:

  • Individual and Group Counseling
  • Vocational Counseling
  • Assessment
  • Program Development
  • Program Evaluation

Employers:

  • Hospitals
  • Residential treatment facilities
  • Drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs
  • Correctional facilities
  • Probation services
  • Group homes
  • Nursing homes
  • Assisted living facilities
  • Senior centers
  • Adult service programs
  • Therapeutic recreation centers
  • College/university disabilities offices
  • State and federal government including:
    • Department of Social Services
    • Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies
    • Veterans Affairs

Strategies & Information:

  • Gain practical experience working with people who have physical disabilities, the elderly, children, and families.
  • Become familiar with human development and issues specific to aging and disabilities.
  • Volunteer with agencies providing services to these populations such as Meals on Wheels, Project Live, etc.
  • Seek knowledge of assessment procedures and therapeutic recreational activities.
  • Research government and community resources available for those in need.
  • Expect to work on multidisciplinary teams.
  • Obtain certification as a rehabilitation counselor (CRC) through the CRCC.

Area: Substance Abuse

Sub-Area:

  • Addictions Counseling
  • Behavioral Disorders Counseling
  • Program Development
  • Program Evaluation
  • Assessment

Employers:

  • Hospitals
  • Residential treatment facilities
  • Drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs
  • Vocational rehabilitation agencies
  • Correctional facilities
  • Probation services
  • Group homes
  • Community mental health organizations
  • Local, state, and federal government agencies

Strategies & Information:

  • Gain practical experience working with people who have alcohol and drug issues and/or behavioral disorders.
  • Become familiar with assessment procedures and typical interventions.
  • Volunteer with local hospitals, detox centers, or residential treatment facilities.
  • Investigate government and community resources available for those in need.
  • Attend community meetings such as AA or NA.
  • Learn to work well with different types of people.
  • Develop multicultural competence.
  • Seek knowledge of psychopharmacology and dual diagnosis issues.
  • Obtain certification as a Master Addictions Counselor (MAC).

Area: Social Services

Sub-Area:

  • Case Management
  • Program Development
  • Community Education
  • Administration
  • Advocacy
  • Community Relations
  • Mental Health Services
  • Volunteer Coordination
  • Research
  • Grant Writing

Employers:

  • Child guidance clinics
  • Correctional facilities
  • Consulting firms
  • Non-profit and social service organizations
  • Research organizations
  • Hospitals: military, psychiatric, VA, or general
  • Health maintenance organizations
  • Nursing homes
  • Assisted living facilities
  • Federal, state, and local government including:
    • Department of Child and Family Services
    • Department of Corrections
    • Department of Human Services
    • Department of Justice
    • Department of Mental Health
    • Department of Veterans Affairs

Strategies & Information:

  • Some graduates of counseling programs may choose social service roles in which they are not providing clinical counseling but perform other functions.
  • Volunteer with a local social service or non-profit organization to test interests.
  • Participate in community events to become familiar with local organizations and community resources.
  • Learn to work well with different types of people from varying socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, and religious backgrounds.
  • Develop a wide range of skills such as presenting, grant writing, and fund raising. Sometimes professionals in nonprofit organizations fill multiple roles in their jobs.
  • Become familiar with government hiring procedures.

General Information and Strategies