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Old 11-29-2010, 11:12 PM
35 posts, read 104,760 times
Reputation: 14


I need some help figuring out which program to enroll in to become a LMHC - Licensed Mental Health Counselor. I currently live in CA and my husband and I are thinking of moving to NY or NJ in three years when my son graduates HS. We want to eventually start a private practice so I need to be sure I enroll in the right program so I am eligible. I would love any help on NYC, Northern NJ, or CA schools that are accredited...I am so confused by the CACREP and the NYS Dept of Ed regulations..Schools that are listed on the NYS Dept of Ed site are not on the CACREP...And I am not sure which is more important...I assume the NYS Dept of Ed because they are the site on the licensure page...But I want to be sure if I am putting out the money that I am going to be able to get the license without a hassle.

Any help would be much appreciated!
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Old 11-30-2010, 02:53 PM
18,840 posts, read 36,766,955 times
Reputation: 26439
Don't do it. Do Social Work instead. That way you can get third party payment from Tri-Care, and Medicaid/Medicare. LPC is still not recognized very much, Social Work is better.
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Old 05-20-2011, 10:06 PM
Location: Allen, TX via NJ of course
188 posts, read 367,248 times
Reputation: 141
Not true...LPCs are getting more acceptance on the Federal side. Check out counseling.org
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Old 05-21-2011, 11:25 AM
Status: "afterhours" (set 5 hours ago)
Location: The New England part of Ohio
23,543 posts, read 31,297,630 times
Reputation: 66451
I am originally from NY State and I have a close friend who is a Mental Health Counselor. She wishes that she had become a Social Worker instead for a number of reasons. NY is a highly regulated and old school state. Licensed Mental Health Counselors are new to NYS, and people and institutions are just figuring out what they are and what to do with them.
Insurance companies vary, but Licensed Social Workers are widely accepted. There is more acceptance of Social Workers than of MHCs.

Because NY is bureaucratic, and change takes a long time, it will be quite a while until the concept of Professional Mental Health Counselors is accepted by the public. NY and California are similar in many ways but acceptance of anything new in regard to education is not one of them.
In NY stick to the tried and true.

By the way, my friend is now perusing a PsyD.
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Old 05-22-2011, 01:47 PM
18,840 posts, read 36,766,955 times
Reputation: 26439
Sure, check out counseling.org page, then go to opm.gov and seach jobs for counselors, you get maybe 10. Search jobs for social workers, you pull up 10 pages of job listings. The VA will hire social workers who are not LCSW, and will give you two years to get that credential, however, they will ONLY hire LPC's, not CPC-I. A big difference if you ask me.
If at all.

And don't do school counseling, that will nail you to the school system.

Best bet, phd in psychology, or MSW.

There are so many instances that the counseling profession is bashed compared with social work, it is frustrating. For example, to be certified by DOT as an SAP, they won't even accept anyone who is an LPC yet they accept MSW.

Same to be a licensed substance abuse counslor, in many states an MSW is accepted to get the credential, but an LPC is not given the same reciprocity.

Look at these things carefully before you make a choice.
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Old 05-22-2011, 02:22 PM
Location: Bar Harbor, ME
1,922 posts, read 4,258,240 times
Reputation: 1299
Your best bet under a PhD level is still an MSW with a nationally recognized LCSW(Licensed Clinical Social Worker). Most eastern states will take an LCSW any time. In some places you can become a licensed clinical psychologist or licensed psychologist, but most of those programs require a PhD or PsyD.

But to work in a school setting you will still need an internship in school counseling, even though in many places districts have cut their counselors so much that mostly what they do even at elementary is handle special ed, and testing.
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