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Mental Health Counseling

Student-centered, challenging, rewarding

Welcome to the Mental Health Counseling program at Alfred University! A career in Mental Health Counseling is a rewarding career in many ways. Alfred’s program, with its emphasis on quality programming and student-centered faculty, prepares and trains students to meet the challenges of providing high quality mental health care to a variety of populations across a variety of settings.

School

Campus Locations

Main Campus - Alfred, NY

Degrees

Mental Health Counseling (MS Ed, CAS)

Growing Industry

Nationally, mental health counseling is a rapidly growing profession. The Department of Labor reports that mental health counseling jobs are projected to grow 19% over the next decade, much faster than the average of all professions.

CACREP Accreditation

With CACREP accreditation and New York reciprocity, graduates from the Alfred University School Counseling Master's program have easily been hired for school counseling positions in other states throughout the country.

CACREP Logo

Holistic Approach

Mental health counselors have a skillset that is unique among other human service disciplines, with its holistic approach that emphasizes wellness, diversity competence, development, prevention and the medical model.

Full-Time Sequence

First Year

Fall Semester

  • COUN 602 Professional & Ethical Foundations of Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 605 Career Development & Life Planning 3 credits
  • COUN 636 Principles of Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 642 Multicultural Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 606 Human Development 3 credits

Spring Semester

  • COUN 603 Foundations of Mental Health Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 615 Psychopathology & Differential Diagnosis 3 credits
  • COUN 638 Advanced Counseling Theory & Practice 3 credits
  • COUN 657 Practicum in Counseling I 3 credits

Summer Semester

  • COUN 626 Assessment in Counseling 3 credits
  • PSYC 641 Introduction to Family Therapy 3 credits

Second Year

Fall Semester

  • COUN 663 Internship in Mental Health Counseling I 6 credits
  • COUN 641 Counseling Special Populations 3 credits
  • COUN 671 Research & Statistics

Spring Semester

  • COUN Internship in Mental Health Counseling II 6 credits
  • COUN 628 Assessment in Mental Health Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 695 Topics in Counseling 3 credits

 

Part-Time Sequence

First Year

Fall Semester

  • COUN 602 Professional & Ethical Foundations of Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 606 Human Development 3 credits
  • COUN 636 Principles of Counseling

Spring Semester

  • COUN 615 Psychopathology & Differential Diagnosis 3 credits
  • COUN 638 Advanced Counseling Theory & Practice 3 credits
  • COUN 639 Group Counseling

Summer Semester

  • COUN 626 Assessment in Counseling 3 credits
  • PSYC 641 Introduction to Family Therapy 3 credits

Second Year

Fall Semester

  • COUN 605 Career Development & Life Planning 3 credits
  • COUN 642 Multicultural Counseling
  • COUN 671 Research & Statistics

Spring Semester

  • COUN 603 Foundations of Mental Health Counseling 3 credits
  • COUN 657 Practicum in Counseling I 3 credits
  • COUN 695 Topics in Counseling 3 credits

Third Year

Fall Semester

  • COUN 663 Internship in Mental Health Counseling I 6 credits
  • COUN 641 Counseling in Special Populations 3 credits

Spring Semester

  • COUN 664 Internship in Mental Health Counseling II 6 credits
  • COUN 628 Assessment in Mental Health Counseling 3 credits

 

Program Total: 60 credits

Students in the Mental Health Program will complete 100 total hours (40 of which are direct service hours) in Practicum in Counseling, at an approved mental health setting working with clients under the supervision of a licensed mental health clinician. During Internship in Mental Health Counseling I and Internship in Mental Health Counseling II, students continue to spend time at an approved mental health setting working with clients under the supervision of a licensed mental health clinician. Students also spend time providing clinical experience at the Child & Family Services Center under the supervision of program faculty. Over the course of a minimum of two internship semesters, students must accumulate at least 600 total hours and 240 direct service hours, distributed equivalently across both semesters.

Applying

To apply, students should select AU Campus MSEd Counseling as their degree program on the graduate application form. Students do not have to choose their counseling specialty (School Counseling or Mental Health Counseling) until the second semester, as this is when the specialization courses begin.

Students should submit the following to the Graduate Admissions Office:

  • the completed application form and fee;
  • three letters of recommendation;
  • official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate coursework;
  • scores from the GRE general test if undergraduate GPA is less than a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • a brief personal statement of your program interest.                 

In addition, because of the high level of maturity, sensitivity, independence and flexibility necessary in the program, an on-campus interview is required. You'll be contacted for an interview once all application materials have been received.

Apply Today

Financial Support

There are three types of assistantships that all full-time graduate students may choose to acquire: 1) General graduate assistantships; 2) Enhanced graduate assistantships; 3) Athletic graduate assistantships.

All full time graduate students throughout the university are granted a general graduate assistantship, which requires the student to work 7.5 hours per week for a professor or university division. This assistantship reduces 50% of the tuition cost and provides the student with a stipend (25% of the reduced tuition). Students are responsible to the faculty or staff member to whom they are assigned.

Full-time students may instead choose to apply for an enhanced graduate assistantship through the Division of Student Affairs, as a Residence Hall Director, Weekend Supervisor, or Assistant Coordinator of Leadership Programming. In exchange for working 20 hours per week, this assistantship covers 50% of tuition costs and provides the graduate student with a stipend of $3,000 to $5,000, depending on the assistantship. Some enhanced assistantships provide a furnished on-campus apartment and full meal plan when the University is in session.  For more information please contact the directors of Residence Life, Center for Student Involvement, and/or the Judson Leadership Center.

Students interested in the part-time program may apply for an athletic graduate assistantship, which fully covers a maximum of 18 credits of tuition per academic year (see the part-time sequence) and provides a small stipend in exchange for working 20 hours per week as an assistant coach, athletic trainer, or facilities manager. For more information please contact the Director of Athletics.

Additional financial support may be available through grants and other external sources obtained through the Lea R. Powell Institute for Children and Families. The Financial Aid Office assists graduate students in obtaining additional forms of assistance whenever possible.

Alfred University’s Master's of Science degree in Mental Health Counseling consists of 60 credit hours of coursework and supervised practicum and internship experiences. As a CACREP accredited program, Alfred’s coursework addresses the eight common core curricular experiences as well as several specialization areas including:

  • Foundations of mental health counseling
  • Psychopathology and differential diagnosis
  • Counseling special populations/evidence-based practices
  • Mental health assessment
  • Substance use disorders

The practicum and internship courses, which occur across three semesters of training, provide students with over 700 hours of applied experiences in area community mental health agencies and college and university counseling centers. 

Alfred’s mental health counseling program is registered with New York State as a Licensure Qualified Program. Thus, graduates of the program will have completed all of the educational requirements necessary to obtain their limited permit as a Mental Health Counselor. Graduates are eligible to pursue full licensure (LMHC) by accumulating the required post-graduate contact hours and passing the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Examination.

Graduates can gain meaningful employment in a variety of New York State Office of Mental Health programs, exempt settings, and even as private practitioners, as most of the major insurance companies in New York accept LMHC’s as providers. And, given our CACREP accreditation, graduates have found it easy to gain licensure and employment in other states throughout the country.

A Rewarding Career

Nationally, mental health counseling is a rapidly growing profession. The Department of Labor reports that mental health counseling jobs are projected to grow 19% over the next decade, much faster than the average of all professions. This is not surprising as mental health counselors have a skillset that is unique among other human service disciplines - with its holistic approach that emphasizes wellness, diversity competence, development, prevention and the medical model.

Mental health counselors work in a variety of settings including community mental health agencies, inpatient settings, college counseling centers, and private practice. Practitioners work to empower diverse individuals (adults, children and families) who present with a variety of issues that can include relationship and career concerns, as well as serious mental illness and addiction. Mental health counselors are fully trained to provide a comprehensive set of services that includes psychotherapy, assessment and diagnosis, psychoeducation, and crisis intervention.

Our Recent graduates have been hired by:

Faculty / Staff

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Steve Byrne

Assoc Professor Counseling

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