WCSU Master of Science in Counselor Education program ranked third in state
Topcounselingschools.org rated the programs throughout Connecticut on their average performance based on program completion rate, job placement rate, licensing exam pass rate, accreditation length, research productivity, and tuition and fees. WCSU ranked third for master’s degree in counselor education, a program that offers either a 48-credit school counseling option or a 60-credit clinical mental health counseling option, each leading to the Master of Science (M.S.) degree. The school counseling program prepares graduates to work within the school system, while the clinical mental health counseling degree focuses on working in the community. Both of the WCSU programs are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs.
“It’s because of the quality of the program that we ranked so highly and it’s really our outstanding faculty that makes it happen,” said Dr. Catherine O’Callaghan, professor and chair of the WCSU Education and Education Psychology Department. “We were ahead of all the other state universities. Our faculty has a great connection with the students and we have a waiting list for the programs. Once students come in, faculty works very closely with them. The connection doesn’t stop after graduation, and they guide them through this whole process.
Each program, which accepts about 14 students a year, offers specialty courses including marriage and family counseling, and play therapy.
“As far as unique aspects, we organize a school crisis team for 13 area school districts and run a play therapy conference each fall,” said Dr. Gabriel Lomas, WCSU associate professor of Education and Education Psychology.
School candidates generally find employment in public and private schools as counselors; clinical candidates find positions in hospitals, agencies, substance treatment centers and in private practice.
The counselor education program has been nationally accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs since 1996. The school counseling option prepares candidates to work as school counselors in grades K-12. The clinical mental health counseling option prepares students to work as counselors in a variety of community, agency and clinical mental health settings. Students are National-Certified Counselor-eligible after passing the National Counselor Exam, administered at Western each fall and spring. In addition, graduates are eligible to become licensed professional counselors upon completing additional requirements set forth by the State of Connecticut.
Western Connecticut State University offers outstanding faculty in a range of quality academic programs. Our diverse university community provides students an enriching and supportive environment that takes advantage of the unique cultural offerings of Western Connecticut and New York. Our vision: To be an affordable public university with the characteristics of New England’s best small private universities.