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M.A.Ed.School Counseling

School Counseling

The Master of Arts in Education (M.A.Ed.) in School Counseling prepares you for employment as a counselor in school settings at elementary, middle, and high school levels and leads to a recommendation for K-12 School Counseling licensure (certification) by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. You may also be eligible to apply for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor Associate (LPC-A).

Mental health counselors have the opportunity to work in a variety of environments like college campuses, non-profit organizations, county mental health services, substance abuse centers and other places. This important work gives you the opportunity to make a significant change in the lives of individuals by helping them overcome various mental and emotional issues. Western Carolina University’s Master of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is intentionally designed to give you the skills you need to pursue the employment you are passionate about. This program is nationally CACREP-accredited.

What You'll Learn

The M.S. in Mental Health Counseling is a 60-semester hour program that utilizes the traditional classroom setting along with practical experience. Some of the issues covered in the classroom include: human growth and development; social and cultural foundations of counseling; and professional counselor orientation. Students will also explore issues related to mental health counseling such as ethics and legal issues. Outside of the classroom students will engage in at least 600 hours of hands-on learning during a full-time internship. Graduates are prepared to pursue the post-Master's Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) credential.

Where You'll Go

There are a number of organizations in need of qualified mental health counselors. Some destinations for employment are domestic violence shelters, mental health facilities, college campuses and substance abuse centers. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states the average salary for mental health counselors is $43,990 and is predicting the job field to increase 29% by 2022.

Next Steps

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