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Husson University Graduate Programs in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling Earn CACREP Accreditation



Published on: January 23, 2015

BANGOR, MAINE – Husson University announced today that the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Program (CACREP), a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), has conferred accreditation to the following program areas in the counseling and human relations program at Husson University: Master of Science (M.S.) in clinical mental health counseling and Master of Science in school counseling.

CACREP sets the standards for the education of professional counselors. Only one other university in Maine has received accreditation from CACREP. 

“Earning CACREP accreditation is a singular achievement for Husson University and a testament to the quality of our graduate counseling programs,” says Lynne Coy-Ogan Ed.D., senior vice president for academic affairs and provost. “In order to earn this mark of distinction, each of these programs had to meet over 44 rigorous program and curricula standards.” 

Husson University President and CEO Robert A. Clark, Ph.D. sees value in accreditation. “Any program that seeks CACREP accreditation must complete a rigorous self-study, application and review process. Once completed, an external peer review team conducts a site review where they closely scrutinize the program and processes being used by the educational institution to prepare future counselors. These accreditation team visits often provide useful advice on ways we can better prepare individuals for successful careers as practicing professionals.” 

Abundance of Career Opportunities

Graduates of counseling programs are in high demand. Employment for mental health counselors is expected to grow by 29 percent through 2022, while employment for school counselors is expected to grow by 12 percent through 2022, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook (2014). 
“Healthcare accounts for one-sixth of the U.S. economy and America’s aging population is increasing demand for individuals with healthcare knowledge and experience. With programs in counseling, health education, healthcare studies, health science, nursing, occupational therapy, pharmacy and physical therapy, Husson University has become one of Maine’s leading providers of healthcare career education,” says Clark. 

The majority of Husson University counseling program graduates finds employment before or upon graduation and more than 80 percent are employed in Maine. Many of these graduates choose to work in rural areas where they help bring critical mental health treatment and school counseling services to underserved communities. 

Quality Education

Husson University does an outstanding job of preparing students for mental health and school counseling careers. According to the most recent data, 100 percent of Husson clinical mental health counseling and school counseling master’s degree graduates passed their licensing and certification exams, including the National Counselor Exam (NCE) and the Praxis II Professional School Counselor Exam.

After graduation, Husson University’s clinical mental health counseling program graduates become licensed clinical professional counselors (LCPC) and are employed in agencies, hospitals, schools and private practices. Those who earn their M.S. in school counseling become certified professional school counselors and go on to work as professional school guidance counselors or other closely related educational positions. 

In accordance with the standards of CACREP accreditation, Husson counseling students complete a rigorous graduate program that includes: common core courses in professional orientation and ethical practice; social and cultural diversity; human growth and development; career development; counseling theory; individual and group counseling skills; assessment; research and program evaluation. The counseling program also has formed valuable relationships with hospitals, agencies, counseling practices, and schools throughout Maine and other states offering essential practicum and internship experiences for students. 

In addition, clinical mental health counseling students complete coursework in crisis intervention; addiction treatment; marriage and family therapy; and diagnosing and treating mental health disorders. 
School counseling students complete courses that apply core learning to the roles and functions of professional school counselors. The program effectively prepares professionals for work with children and adolescents in PK-12 school settings by providing them with in-depth knowledge in developing, managing, delivering and evaluating school guidance programs.

History of Excellence

The idea of starting graduate programs in mental health and school counseling at Husson University began about 10 years ago as an outgrowth of the institution’s undergraduate programs in teacher education and psychology. In 2007, Husson hired Dr. Deborah Drew as the program director of the counseling program. She focused initially on the development of a school counseling program and later helped the counseling psychology program complete the transition to a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling.

Today, the counseling and human relations program in the School of Education at Husson University offers three Master of Science degrees in clinical mental health counseling, school counseling, and human relations. The program has three full-time graduate faculty members, a clinical coordinator, a variety of highly qualified adjunct faculty and an administrative assistant. Since its inception, the program has awarded 104 degrees. 

For more than 100 years, Husson University has prepared future leaders to handle the challenges of tomorrow through innovative undergraduate and graduate degrees. With a commitment to delivering affordable classroom, online and experiential learning opportunities, Husson University has come to represent superior value in higher education. Our Bangor campus and off-campus satellite education centers in Southern Maine, Wells and Northern Maine provide advanced knowledge in business; health and education; pharmacy studies; science and humanities; as well as communication. In addition, Husson University has a robust adult learning program. For more information about educational opportunities that can lead to personal and professional success, visit Husson.edu.

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