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Student Affairs and College Counseling Program

Through a counselor education framework established by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Program (CACREP) standards, the 48-credit MSEd graduate program in Student Affairs and College Counseling is one of less than 20 national programs that are designed to prepare student affairs practitioners as educators and counselors, not administrators.

Students learn entry-level skills to develop and manage supportive relationships with contemporary college students to foster their development and facilitate learning opportunities. Students will also learn the historical and philosophical ethos of student affairs as a helping profession, and integrate developmental counseling theories into educational programs and interventions to promote student persistence towards graduation.

Those enrolled in the program will also specifically learn counseling skills, crisis management techniques, career development theories, and are exposed to diversity issues and how student affairs professionals as social justice advocates can address historical, societal, and contemporary inequities within their practice.

Program Distinctiveness

The Student Affairs and College Counseling program is unique, as it has two courses in group facilitation as well as additional courses focusing on mental health concerns, assessment, and social justice/diversity. Through an additional unique pedagogical approach, students become emerging experts in integrating specific theories into student affairs administrative systems.

Specifically, this program operates on the foundational and historical perspective that student affairs is a helping profession and not simply an administrative function within a college or university. Students will graduate with the experience, knowledge, and skill to function as student affairs professionals or college counselors in helping students develop their identity and supporting students as they persist towards graduation. Students will also be prepared to become involved in the professional associations and eventually serve in leadership capacities, all with the understanding that they are to establish supportive frameworks for students based on developmental models, not simply policy.

By becoming exposed to precollege issues, students can understand the narrative and experience of first-generation and traditional student transition.

Courses are offered in flexible hybrid, online, and traditional classroom formats in the evenings making graduate study possible for traditional full-time or part-time study. Chi Sigma Alpha, the international honor society for student affairs, serves to recognize our top students and offer professional development and support to program students.

Additional Endorsements and Dual Track Option

Students may also obtain school counseling certification in the state of New Jersey by completing two additional internships and two specific school counseling courses through the Dual Track option.

The program is currently accredited by Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Students can earn national licensure (NCC) and eventually complete requirements for the Licensed Professional Counselor designation post-graduation.

Commitment to Social Justice

The Student Affairs and College Counseling (SACC) program fosters a strong conceptual commitment to increasing awareness of the diversity of student populations and to social justice. Diversity and social justice concepts are specifically addressed across the curriculum, and more intentionally within two specific courses entirely. The SACC program is dedicated to addressing the convergence of identity, gender, socioeconomic class, privilege, and culture.

To demonstrate this commitment, the Educational Counseling programs in school counseling and student affairs/college counseling sponsor the pre-college mentoring program Monmouth Future Scholars; this program seeks to increase the number of college-bound, first-generation students in Long Branch City Schools.

Field Placements

The field placement process is an integrative 700-hour supervised practice experience, distributed across several semesters and consisting of three individual placements. Each experience is connected to an academic course, which includes supervision and addresses contemporary practice issues within higher education. Students will serve in capacities across the multiple functional areas within student affairs to demonstrate theory to practice.

These courses are EDC 600: Practicum in Counseling, EDC 601B: Internship in Counseling I and EDC 602B: Internship in Counseling II, and require 100 and 300 hours respectively. Students are expected to select a placement within two functional areas across student affairs or college counseling, such as academic advising and student activities. Some internships can be completed in the evening and at night at local partnering institutions at both the community college and university levels. Students can also participate in national summer exchange programs through NODA (orientation, first-year experience), ACUHO-I (residence life), and NACA (student activities).

Students are placed into internships by the Field Placement Coordinator in conjunction with program faculty, and do not have to find their own internships. Students are expected to complete a portfolio based upon the ACPA/NASPA professional competencies upon the overall completion of their field experience.

Additionally, a small number of graduate assistantships are available at Monmouth University and (other off-campus partnership sites). Placements are not guaranteed and are facilitated through the site supervisors and not the program.


Applications are accepted on a rolling basis through the summer, fall, and spring semesters. Students considering full-time study and looking for additional professional experiences through an externship should have a completed application by May 1. Interviews for these limited positions occur in late April and early May. To apply, please see the Office of Graduate Admissions.

Student Affairs and College Counseling

For any questions or more information, please contact:

Vernon Smith, Ph.D.


The hands-on, experience-based Educational Counseling program at Monmouth has challenged me and given me opportunities to grow. Through conferences, fieldwork, and on-campus involvement, I have learned new skills while embracing my passion for this profession. The phenomenal faculty and support system at Monmouth has been instrumental in my success and has prepared me to be a leader in my field.

Jihad Johnson
Educational Counseling Graduate Student – Student Affairs and College Counseling