Mental Health Counseling Objectives & Structure


Building on the mission of St. John Fisher College, the Mental Health Counseling program’s mission is to deliver personalized instruction to a diverse student body regarding essential counseling knowledge and skills, as well as facilitating the development and enhancement of personal qualities and characteristics necessary to become an outstanding professional mental health counselor.

Program Objectives

Upon graduation from the Mental Health Counseling Program, you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate professional skills and personal qualities required for working as an effective counselor in an interdisciplinary mental health setting.
  • Demonstrate a variety of differential diagnostic assessment skills consistent with the most current diagnostic manual.
  • Demonstrate the ability to use a diverse range of evidence-based intervention strategies.
  • Develop appropriate intervention plans based upon knowledge of culturally relevant variables in client care, including ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic levels, gender, sexual orientation, and disability status.
  • Demonstrate professional behavior consistent with ethical guidelines of Mental Health Counseling professional organizations and regulatory agencies.

Program Structure

You may take courses on a full-time or part-time basis (see Program Requirements). You are required to complete 60 credit hours of coursework, including a supervised practicum experience with a minimum of 100 clock hours and a supervised internship with a minimum of 900 clock hours. This supervised application of counseling skills in various community sites will gives you the opportunity to grow into an effective mental health counselor.

Because of the demands of our program and sequencing of courses, students are admitted for fall semester only. Our curriculum was developed according to the New York State Department of Education requirements for licensure as a mental health counselor.

Emilia Pawelec

Emilia Pawelec

The Mental Health Counseling Program at St. John Fisher College is unique because it's small in size, and offers one-on-one work and communication between students and faculty. As compared to larger programs and universities, students are able to obtain a more personal experience with others in the MS program.

My field placements taught me that learning goes beyond the classroom, and performing in the real world goes beyond the textbook. This program is designed in a way to give students the practice and preparation to enter an internship with confidence and direction. There's always someone by your side.

The best thing about the Mental Health Counseling program at St. John Fisher College is the students themselves! This master's program has introduced me to some incredible individuals, whose passion for helping others is inspiring. Our community is fortunate to have such talented people, who are dedicated to helping others grow. I have learned a great deal from my peers in the program, and have formed some wonderful friendships.


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