Professionals looking to make a career out of helping people in need can find a spot for themselves inthe field of counseling. Counselors with a master’s degree will have a much easier time getting hired and working in positions that offer top salary. Because counseling is a career which deals with mental state and health, six years of education is necessary to be hired by many organizations, schools, corporations, or to go into private business. Salaries for counseling professionals range from $44,000 to $140,000 on the upper end of the pay grade for different positions. While salary is mainly dependent on job title and location, going to the right school can also be helpful. Here are some things prospective students should look for in a Master in Counseling program.
Counseling professionals will benefit their career by specializing in a niche track. These specialties include clinical mental health, trauma, counseling psychology, professional counseling, school counseling, substance abuse, rehabilitation, and more. Many programs will offer in-field experience for students in their specialty of interest to further skills and help students get a leg up when it comes time to apply for jobs.
High quality counseling is the result of ongoing research into the complexities of the brain, human emotions, and the effects of the environment on the human psyche. Much of the top research in this field is completed at graduate colleges. Professionals who are interested in doing research during their career should prioritize attending a program that is already working on research and getting media and publication attention, as well as offering a master’s in science for counseling. Research projects range widely including subjects such as special education, school psychology, measurement, and more.
Certification is required for many counseling positions as well as better pay. For example, a mental health counselor makes $30,325-$53,872/year, but a licensed professional counselor makes up to $62,848, and a marriage/family therapist (certified) can make up to $140,000/year. Most graduate programs offer a certification track where students graduate ready to take their certification exams or with the qualifications and in-field hours required to be certified on the spot.