Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

School of Adult & Graduate Studies

Classes start August 26, 2024

Advance Your Counseling Career

Montreat College’s counseling program trains candidates in the fundamentals of human development, human behavior, and counseling in preparation for professional practice in a variety of settings, including private practice, community, government agencies, and other mental health settings. The counseling program provides a forum for candidates to engage in reflective practice as professionals and to become life-long learners, active global citizens, and advocates for social justice.

Announcement:  Starting Spring 2024 the CMHC program will be online with two face-to-face required residencies. 

Clinical Mental Health Counseling Degree Highlights

  • The CMHC program is an online model with 2 required residencies throughout your 60-credit program.  Each residency is embedded within a 15-week online course that includes self-paced modules, assignments, and assessments. During the 15 weeks, you will engage with your instructor and peers in online coursework which prepares and supports the in-person residency component. The residency component offers the opportunity for you to apply the clinical knowledge you have developed in your courses to hands-on activities during the 5-day in-person residency
  • Become a counselor practitioner while learning the history and development of the counseling profession, the theories and ethical practice of counseling, and the competencies necessary for working with a diversity of patients and clients.
  • Prepare to deliver healing and health in the areas of developmental, behavioral, psychological, social, emotional, and career-based challenges and crises.
  • Learn theory, ethics, and strategies are emphasized, in addition to a counseling practicum and two internships.
  • Upon completion of the Master of Arts in Counseling degree, graduates will have met North Carolina Licensed Professional Counselor educational requirements.

For over 25 years, Montreat College’s School of Adult and Graduate Studies has been helping adult students acquire essential skills, complete their degrees, and take their career to the next level. Montreat offers undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs in a classroom or online.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the start date for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC) degree program?

Fall and Spring Semesters.  Fall starts in August and Spring starts in January.  However, in order for a cohort to start, a set number of students have to be enrolled. If this set amount of enrolled students is not achieved, the cohort will not start.

 

How long does it take to complete the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program?

The program requires completion of 60 credit hours. If students take a full-time load each term (three classes), they should complete the program in less than 3 years.

 

How much does the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program cost?

Montreat College programs are competitively priced, and we offer multiple forms of financial aid to help you achieve your educational goals.  Please see the current AGS Tuition and Fees page here.  Also, please keep in mind that there are multiple college and government financial aid programs available to help mitigate the cost of your education. You can learn more about your financial aid options.

Where is the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program offered?

Courses will be online starting the Spring semester of 2024 and have 2 in-person residencies.

 

How do the Clinical Courses work?

Students are provided a detailed site lists for all locations and are provide guidance from the start of the program to the start of clinical courses.

 

Is there flexibility in completing the coursework?

During the course of the week, students are expected review the course materials (videos, articles, Ted Talk videos, critical thinking questions, polls, etc), review the textbook readings, participate in discussion forums, and complete any quiz/test/essay that is assigned. The amount of weekly time/flexibility in each class can vary depending on the Professor.

 

Will the Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program prepare me for licensure?

The program will assist you for licensure by preparing you with the following requirements:

  • Completion of all 60 credits required for the degree, including a minimum of 42 credit hours of graduate work with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.
  • Successful completion of clinical counseling internship hours
  • Successfully passing the Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Exam (CPCE) prior to enrolling in COUN 6222.

What are the CPCE Pass Rates for our students?

  • 100% (2016)
  • 100% (2017)
  • 100% (2018)
  • 100% (2019)
  • 100% (2020)

How long does it take to be licensed?

After successful completion of the CMHC program, one must apply with the NCBLCMHC and complete 3000 supervised clocked hours. More information can be found at www.ncblcmhc.org.

What is the licensure rate for CMHC students?

  • 93% (2016)
  • 94% (2017)
  • 98% (2018)
  • 98% (2019)
  • 93% (2020)

Is there a required drug test to be enrolled into the program?

Yes. Upon acceptance into the program, a mandatory drug test is required and must be passed before starting the program.

Is the GRE required for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program?

Effective immediately, the GRE will no longer be an admissions requirement for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program. The Department of Arts and Sciences met to discuss the current requirements for the MACMHC and determined the GRE is not necessarily a predictor of success in the program. In addition, the GRE is not a standard required of our CACREP Accreditation, and therefore will not negatively impact our standings. All other admissions requirements will continue.

 

Is this degree CACREP Accredited?

Montreat’s CMHC program was accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) in 2018 and the certification, renewed in 2022, is valid until 2026. *This program is pending CACREP approval of programmatic changes.

What jobs can you pursue with a Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree?

According to the U.S. Bureau for Labor Statistics (BLS), the job market for substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors is expected to grow 23% from 2016-26, much faster than the job market generally. Mental health counseling jobs include: licensed professional counselor, licensed clinical professional counselor, human services educator, higher education counselor, student affairs administrator, drug and alcohol counselor, addictions counselor, licensed mental health counselor, director of human services agency, geriatric counselor, school counselor, social and community service, occupational/industrial counselor, marriage and family counseling, child counseling, and more.

According to the BLS, clinical, counseling, and school psychologists earn an average annual salary of $76,990. However, the amount of money that such counselors make depends on many factors, including region, industry, and specialization.

 

What are the admissions requirements?

To qualify for admission into the Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program, the following conditions must be satisfied in addition to the standard graduate admissions requirements:

  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 from the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate study*
  • Submit a current resume that includes both academic and employment history
  • Submit official transcripts for all colleges attended
  • Complete and pay for a national background check
  • After the completion of all admission requirements, a drug test will be required before each student begins their first course.

*If the applicant has a cumulative GPA below 3.0, a “Low GPA” essay is required. The essay should cover challenges that contributed to the low GPA, as well as specifically what the applicant will do to maintain a 3.0 overall GPA in the CMHC program.

No GMAT or GRE required.

What are the Montreat College CMHC job placement rates?

  • 100% (2015-2016)
  • 92% (2016-2017)
  • 94% (2017-2018)
  • 99% (2018-2019)
  • 99% (2019-2020)

Are the two residencies required for the 60-hour program?

Yes.  If you start the CMHC program in Spring 2024, there are 2 week-long residencies that are required in the 15-week courses of COUN 5221 (Summer 2024) and COUN 5223 (Summer 2025).  The residency will be held at the Asheville campus (950 Hendersonville Road, Asheville, NC) and will run from Monday through Friday. Monday through Thursday will be full days (8:00 AM to 5:00 PM) and Friday will be a shorter day for wrap-up and review.  Travel, lodging and meals will be the students’ responsibility.

What does my course schedule look like?

Course
COUN5211 – ORIENTATION TO PROFESSIONAL COUNSELING
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 6 PM – 7:29 PM – Synchronous)
COUN5213 – THEORIES & TECHNIQUES OF COUNSELING
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 7:30 PM – 9 PM – Synchronous)
COUN5212 – ETHICS & ETHICAL PRACTICES IN COUNSELING
(8 weeks – Asynchronous)
COUN5221 – COUNSELING SKILLS
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 6 PM – 7:29 PM – Synchronous)
(RESIDENCY REQUIRED FOR THIS COURSE*)
COUN5214 – COUNSELING ACROSS THE LIFESPAN
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 7:30 PM – 9 PM – Synchronous)
COUN5231 – SPIRITUALITY & RELIGION IN COUNSELING
(8 weeks – Asynchronous)
COUN5261 – SUBSTANCE ABUSE COUNSELING
(8 weeks – Asynchronous)
COUN5215 – MULTICULTURAL COUNSELING
(8-week course – Asynchronous)
COUN5241 – CAREER COUNSELING
(8-week course – Asynchronous)
COUN5217 – RESEARCH METHODS IN COUNSELING
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 6 PM – 7:29 PM – Synchronous)
COUN5216 – ASSESSMENT IN COUNSELING
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 7:30 PM – 9 PM – Synchronous)
COUN5251 – CRISIS INTERVENTION/ CRISIS COUNSELING
(8-week course – Asynchronous)
COUN5251 – CRISIS INTERVENTION/ CRISIS COUNSELING
(8-week course – Asynchronous)
COUN5223 – GROUP COUNSELING
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 6 PM – 7:29 PM – Synchronous)
(RESIDENCY REQUIRED FOR THIS COURSE*)
COUN5222 – MENTAL HEALTH DIAGNOSIS & TREATMENT
(15 weeks on Tuesdays at 7:30 PM – 9 PM – Synchronous)
COUN5271- CHILD & ADOLESCENT COUNSELING OR COUN5281 – MARRIAGE & FAMILY COUNSELING
(8-week course – Asynchronous)
COUN6221- COUNSELING PRACTICUM (15 weeks)
COUN6222 – COUNSELING INTERNSHIP I (15 weeks)
COUN6223 – COUNSELING INTERNSHIP II (15 weeks)
COUN 5211 Professional Orientation to Counseling

This course will be an introductory exploration of the history of counseling as a profession as well as current trends in the practice of clinical mental health counseling. Students will begin to explore the various settings in which counseling can take place and the specialties within the profession, in addition to professional counseling licensure and credentialing. Additional topics covered in this course in an introductory way include counselor self-care, consultation, professional counseling organizations, advocacy, ethics, and multicultural competency.

COUN 5212 Ethics and Ethical Practice in Counseling

This course will examine ethical standards and ethical decision making for the practice of counseling. Applicable codes of ethics will be examined and case studies will be used to challenge students to think critically about ethics and ethical decision-making. Ethical issues in individual, group, family, and couples counseling will be covered, as well as multicultural considerations. The course will also address confidentiality, informed consent, boundaries, multiple relationships, supervision, and consultation within an ethical framework.

COUN 5213 Theories and Techniques in Counseling

This course will provide an overview of counseling theories and related techniques including psychoanalytic, gestalt, behavioral, cognitive, reality, existential, Adlerian, family systems, feminist, and postmodern therapies. Students will have the opportunity to role-play and demonstrate beginning skills for counseling through videotaped role­play sessions with classmates.

COUN 5221 Counseling Skills

This course will provide students an opportunity to continue to develop counseling microskills as well as foundational skills in interviewing in the helping professions. Students will videotape role-played sessions and participate in peer review as well as review with course instructor. Prerequisites: COUN 5213

COUN 5231 Spirituality and Religion in Counseling

This course will examine the role of spirituality and religious beliefs in the counseling relationship and process. Students will explore how different religious traditions that clients may participate in could influence the counseling process as well as examine their own religious and spiritual foundations for their counseling theory and practice. Ethical standards will be discussed.

COUN 5214 Counseling across the Lifespan

This course will provide an overview of human development across the lifespan, from birth until death and explore critical considerations for counseling individuals across these stages of development.

COUN 5215 Multicultural Counseling

This course will provide students an opportunity to begin to develop skills for multicultural competency when providing counseling services to clients of diverse backgrounds. Multicultural competencies will be reviewed and students will explore their own identity as a cultural being. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212

COUN 5222 Mental Health Diagnosis and Treatment

This course will provide students an overview of clinical diagnoses according to the current Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM V). Diagnosis criteria will be reviewed and current best practice treatment options will be reviewed. Case studies will be utilized to provide students opportunities to practice diagnostic skills. Treatment planning in counseling will also be discussed Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212

COUN 5241 Career Counseling

This course will provide an introductory exploration of career development across the lifespan, career-counseling theories, assessments relevant to career counseling, and occupational information sources. The course will allow students opportunity to role­play, consider case studies, and create a career intervention for a chosen population. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212, 5215.

COUN 5216 Assessment in Counseling

This course will provide an overview of assessment methods and tools used in counseling, including intakes as well as standardized assessments. Ethical standards for the use of assessments in counseling will be reviewed. Students will experience taking an assessment as well as provide a critical review of assessments. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212, 5215.

COUN 5223 Group Counseling

This course will provide an overview of theory and principles of effective group work provide students an opportunity to develop skills in using group techniques, and plan activities for groups. Students will participate in a group experience during this course. Ethical standards for group counseling will be reviewed. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212, 5213 5215, 5221.

COUN 5217 Research Methods in Counseling

This course will provide an overview of qualitative and quantitative research methodology and techniques and discuss the role of research in counseling. Ethical standards for conducting research will be discussed. Students will develop the ability to read and critically evaluate counseling literature as well as develop a research prospectus. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212.

COUN 5251 Crisis Intervention/Crisis Counseling

This course will provide students with an overview of counseling skills for working in crisis and trauma situations as well as crisis intervention theory. Students will review case studies and create a crisis resource for a client population or counseling setting of interest. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212, 5215.

COUN 5261 Substance Abuse Counseling

This course will provide an overview of the nature of substance use, abuse, and dependency. Education, prevention, treatment, and recovery will be addressed. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212.

COUN 5271 Child and Adolescent Counseling

This course will examine the developmental, cultural, relational, and social concepts related to working with children and adolescents in a variety of settings. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212.

OR

COUN 5281 Marriage and Family Counseling
This course will examine the developmental, cultural, relational, and social concepts related to working with couples, marriages and families. It will investigate the system approaches to counseling. Prerequisites: COUN 5211, 5212.

COUN 6221 Counseling Practicum

This is an experiential course and requires students to complete a minimum of 100 hours of clinical counseling practice, under supervision, at an approved site. Students will provide counseling services as well as continue to learn skills in intake, assessment, counseling, and consultation. Students will participate in weekly individual as well as group supervision. Prerequisite: Consent of program director.

COUN 6222 Counseling Internship I

This is an experiential course and requires students to complete a minimum of 300 hours of clinical counseling practice, under supervision, at an approved site. Students will provide counseling services as well as continue to learn skills in intake, assessment, counseling, and consultation. Students will also begin to complete paperwork required for licensure as an LPCA (Licensed Professional Counselor Associate) in NC. Students will participate in weekly individual supervision as well as group supervision. Prerequisites: COUN 6221 and consent of program director.

COUN 6223 Counseling Internship II

This is an experiential course and requires students to complete a minimum of 300 hours of clinical counseling practice, under supervision, at an approved site. Students will provide counseling services as well as continue to learn skills in intake, assessment, counseling, and consultation. Students will also begin to complete paperwork required for licensure as an LPCA (Licensed Professional Counselor Associate) in NC. Students will participate in weekly individual supervision as well as group supervision. Prerequisites: COUN 6222 and consent of program director.

 

Crystal Joudry ’18

I have chosen Montreat College because I know my peers also possess similar goals and values. I also love the encouraging and intelligent professors that possess a wealth of knowledge. It is obvious the faculty and staff are willing to help students succeed.

 

Crystal Joudry ’18

I have chosen Montreat College because I know my peers also possess similar goals and values. I also love the encouraging and intelligent professors that possess a wealth of knowledge. It is obvious the faculty and staff are willing to help students succeed.

Faculty

Gregg Blanton

Dr. Gregg Blanton
Professor of Psychology, Human Services, and Clinical Mental Health
gregg.blanton@montreat.edu

Anna Lee Brown

Dr. Anna Lee Brown
Assistant Professor of Clinical Mental Health Counseling
annalee.brown@montreat.edu

Dr. Penny Hamblin
Associate Professor of Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Program Director, CMHC Program
phamblin@montreat.edu

Dr. Lisa Hedden
Assistant Professor of Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Clinical Director – CMHC Program
lisa.hedden@montreat.edu

Dr. Tyreeka Williams
Assistant Professor of Clinical Mental Health Counseling
tyreeka.williams@montreat.edu

Adjunct Faculty

Nina Davis, PhD, LCMHC

Kwame Frimpong, PhD, LCMHC

Tora Kincaid, PhD, LMCHC, LCASA

 

 

Linda Littlefield, PhD, LCMHC, LMFT, NCC

Joy Martin, PhD, LCMHC

 

CACREP Accreditation

The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), has granted accreditation to the Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC) program in the School of Adult and Graduate Studies at Montreat College.

CACREP Accredited logo

Montreat College’s School of Adult and Graduate Studies’ CACREP accreditation has been renewed until 2026. 

Montreat College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award Associate, Baccalaureate, and Masters degrees. Contact the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Montreat College. If you want to speak with someone at Montreat College about our accreditation, please contact Academic Affairs at (828) 669-8012 ext. 3621 or academicaffairs@montreat.edu. The complaint process for SACS COC can be found on their website.

Other Links

CACREP Interim Decision Letter

Annual Report 2021-22

Annual Report 2020-21

Annual Report 2019-20

Annual Report 2018-19

Annual Report 2017-18

Annual Report 2016-17

Annual Report 2015-16

Program Handbook

Practicum Planning Guide

Tuition and Fees

View Degree Plan and Full Course Listings

Chi Sigma Iota (Montreat College’s chapter is Mu Chi)

CMHC curricula is determined, developed, written, reviewed and evaluated by core and affiliate faculty once per quarter. Core and affiliate faculty are as follows: Dr. John Pope, Dr. Gregg Blanton, Professor Anna Lee Brown, and Dr. Jackie Perry.

Montreat College is an Approved National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) Continuing Education Provider: # 4576

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