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Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP)

The MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP). The program has been CACREP accredited since 2007. For more information on CACREP, please visit their website.

Program Mission

The MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling is designed to train a diverse body of service-oriented graduate students (largely from New Jersey and nearby areas) to be practitioners, leaders, and advocates in the field of mental health counseling. The members of the faculty are committed to graduating students who have exemplary theory-based knowledge and skills in counseling and who have demonstrated competence in providing counseling services to people from diverse populations. The department’s goal is to offer a program of study that seeks to stay consistent with the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) standards, as well as the academic and skill requirements of state licensing and national certification for counseling.

The MS program is intended for students seeking licensure as Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC) in New Jersey. It is the first clinical mental health counseling program in the state to be accredited by CACREP. Accreditation is a significant consideration for the New Jersey State Board of Examiners for LPC licensure.

If desired, students can also later pursue a doctorate in counselor education.

Program Highlights

  • The department has been awarded CACREP Accreditation through 2025. This 8-year accreditation is the highest timetable that can be earned.
  • In accordance with our renewed accreditation, the department is currently transitioning to the new CACREP standards established in 2016.
  • As part of this transitioning process, the department’s CACREP Committee has adopted new learning objectives to meet these standards, which include the following
    1. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with professional orientation and ethics in counseling.
    2. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with culturally competent counseling practice.
    3. Students will gain knowledge of human development across the lifespan and its application within the counseling process.
    4. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with career development and its applications in the counseling process.
    5. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with the establishment of therapeutic relationships and the facilitation of client growth.
    6. Students will gain knowledge and skills associated with group facilitation and the group counseling process.
    7. Students will gain knowledge and skills associated with appraisal and testing.
    8. Students will gain knowledge and skills associated with research and program evaluation to inform counseling practice.
    9. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with working in multidisciplinary mental health systems.
    10. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with mental health diagnosis.
    11. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with evidence based treatment and the evaluation of client progress.
    12. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with providing crisis counseling.
    13. Students will gain the knowledge and skills associated with providing substance abuse treatment.
    14. Students will demonstrate an awareness of self and personal values, aptitude for graduate study, success in forming effective counseling relationships and growth in ethical and culturally competent practice.

Alumni Highlights

  • The Counseling Alumni Connection (CAC) launched a Mentorship Program in Fall 2016. This program involves graduates in the field mentoring current students in their last year before graduation. Currently, there are 23 students paired with a mentor, many who have been working together for almost a year. Mentors are asked to work with mentees for at least one year, or until both parties feel ready to terminate. The coordinator of this program, graduate assistant Alexandra Evangelista, is working to secure more mentor-mentee pairings for the upcoming year. Feedback has been positive with students appreciating the valuable insight from alumni, and alumni enjoying the opportunity to give back to Monmouth.
  • CAC continued their momentum with the “From Our Own” Presentation series, hosting three workshops between Fall 2016 and Summer 2017. These workshops are facilitated by department alumni with expertise in a certain counseling-related subject matter. Starting in April 2017, CAC started offering continuing education (CE) hours for these workshops, drawing an even bigger appeal from alumni and professionals in the field. These hours are offered through the department, an approved CE provider through the National Board of Certified Counselors. CAC plans to host more workshops in 2018.
  • The Current Topics in Counseling Conference, CAC’s first annual conference, is scheduled for Friday, December 1, 2017. The keynote speaker is Dr. Catherine Roland, 2016-2017 American Counseling Association president. Dr. Roland will be discussing the current challenges and ethical responsibilities in advocating for mental health. Following her address, there will be eight workshops on timely counseling subjects presented by MU professors, alumni, and outside counseling professionals. A well-rounded turnout is expected including current students, alumni, and professionals in the mental health field. Attendees will receive five CE hours in an environment of in-depth learning and networking, and will leave the conference with valuable resources to use in practice. The CAC is delighted to host their first event of this nature, and intends to do so every year.

Student Club Activities and Awards

The Counseling Student Association (CSA), under the advisement of Dr. Joanne Jodry, and Chi Sigma Iota (CSI), the Counseling Honor Society, under the advisement of Dr. Joanne Jodry, hosted multiple activities and workshops this year including:

  • Monmouth Challenge
  • “Working with Toxic Co-Workers” presented by Dr. Cavaiola
  • “Dance for Hope” planning to benefit the Ashley Lauren Foundation that supports children and families affected by pediatric cancer
  • T-shirt fundraising
  • Blood drive
  • “Hearing Distressing Voices” workshop
  • Sandtray workshop
  • DRCC Training
  • “Grief Counseling” presented by Dr. Hall
  • CSI held its annual Induction Ceremony in March 2017
  • Support organizing the Immigrant Project

Service Beyond Monmouth

  • Dr. Cavaiola continues to serve as an Associate Editor of the journal Substance Abuse published by Taylor & Francis. Substance Abuse is the flagship journal of the Association for Medical Education & Research in Substance Abuse and International Coalition for Addiction Studies Education (INCASE).
  • Dr. Cavaiola continues to serve as a Board member of INCASE.
  • Dr. Cavaiola also contributes to Psychology Today by writing a blog about work related topics.
  • Dr. Hall continues to serve as a site visitor for the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).
  • Dr. Springer serves as the Communications Co-Chair for the Executive Board of the North Atlantic Region Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (NARACES). Dr. Springer also serves as a Co-Editor of the NARACES Newsletter.
  • Dr. Springer also serves on the Product Management Committee for the Association for Specialists in Group Work (ASGW). Along with this, Dr. Springer is also an Ad-Hoc Reviewer of ASGW’s journal, the Journal for Specialists in Group Work (JSGW).

Program Outcomes: Vital Statistics (as of June 2018)

  • Number of graduates from Summer 2017, Fall 2017, and Spring 2018: 49
  • Program completion rate: 80%
  • Licensure exam pass rate: 91%
  • Job placement rate of graduates actively seeking employment: 97%

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