Clinical Mental Health Counseling, MS

CMHC ClassClinical mental health counselors provide services to clients who seek help with everyday life concerns as well as those who struggle with significant emotional, cognitive, and behavioral challenges. To help these clients achieve optimal well-being, clinical mental health counselors utilize individual, couple, family, and group counseling.

These services are provided across many settings, including private practice, mental health agencies, college counseling centers, churches, hospitals, cancer treatment centers, and substance abuse and eating disorder treatment centers

"Our CMHC program is designed to help people enter as students and graduate as professional counselors. The faculty is dedicated to this task and in helping each student to find their own professional identity. The faculty encourages our students and graduates to fulfill their highest potential and make the best impact on their clients and communities." - Benjamin Willis, CMHC Graduate Program Director 

Program Specific Admission Requirements

New students may start coursework in the fall semester only.

Applicants must complete the specially developed recommendation forms for the program and respond to an additional program specific essay in order to finalize and submit their application.  These documents are requested and collected as part of the on-line application process.

Applicants are expected to have completed a course in each of the following areas: Introduction to Statistics (Descriptive Statistics or Basic Inferential Statistics), Introduction to Theories of Personality, Counseling or Psychotherapy and Lifespan Development (Developmental Psychology, Adulthood, Adolescence, Childhood, Growth and Development).

Personal interviews with program faculty members prior to acceptance are required. Clinical mental health counseling applicants participate in a group interview. All interviews are scheduled by program faculty shortly after the application deadline. Program directors review applications and pay particular attention to each applicant’s ability to address program specific professional goals and professional identity in the statement of intentions.

Students falling below a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale may be required to submit other evidence of their ability to successfully complete a graduate program, such as grades in other graduate-level courses, a record of progressively higher work responsibilities, or scores from the Miller Analogies Test or Graduate Record Examination.  

For general application requirements, please Visit Our Admissions Webpage.


The Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program is a 60-credit curriculum that leads to the Master of Science degree and fulfills all the educational requirements for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Pennsylvania. 

The curriculum is divided into four categories:  Foundations of Professional Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling Courses, Clinical Experience, and Electives for Specialization. 

Required credits include coursework in the principles and practice of counseling, three credits of practicum (100 hours of supervised counseling experience), and six credits of internship (600 hours of supervised counseling experience). 

Six credits of electives are offered to provide students with opportunities for additional study in individual areas of interest and for development of skills in working with specific client populations.

For additional information on the curriculum, visit the Loading... Catalog.

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    Why Choose Scranton?

    Nationally Ranked

    US News & World Report rated The University of Scranton among the 10 top master’s universities in the North in its “America’s Best Colleges” ranking.

    Reduced Tuition

    At $757 per credit, the tuition cost for our Counseling programs is among the most competitive in PA and for regionally accredited universities.

    Jesuit Education

    As a Jesuit university in the United States, The University of Scranton is dedicated to developing the whole person.

    Mission Statement of Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program

    The Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program prepares professional counselors to provide evidence-based culturally and developmentally competent counseling services that enhance the emotional, cognitive, behavioral, relational and spiritual well-being of individuals, couples, families and groups across the lifespan. Graduates of this program are prepared to counsel a wide variety of clients, varying from those who seek help with everyday life concerns to those who struggle with significant emotional, cognitive and behavioral challenges. The importance of advocacy, leadership, social justice, client empowerment and wellness are emphasized throughout the program.

    Beyond the Classroom

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    Counseling Training Center

    Students work with clients from the University and local community, completing at least 40 hours of direct practicum experience.

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    Graduate Assistants receive a stipend as well as tuition scholarships.

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    Honor Societies

    Eligible students can join Chi Delta Rho, the local chapter of the International Honor Society of Counseling.

    Already have a Master's degree? photo

    Already have a Master's degree?

    We offer a post-master's certificate program designed to meet the educational requirements for a licensed professional counselor.

    Successful Graduates

    Career Opportunities

    Community mental health agencies, private practices, interdisciplinary medical offices, substance abuse treatment, crisis counseling agencies


    The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program (formerly the Community Counseling program) has been accredited since 1992 by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

    The Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program was recently reviewed for re-accreditation and successfully met all requirements. Hence, graduates meet all requirements for certification as a National Certified Counselor (NCC) and are eligible to sit for the National Counselor Exam (NCE) sponsored by the National Board of Certified Counselors. Further, graduates meet all of the educational requirements for licensure as Professional Counselors in Pennsylvania and many other states.

    The program prepares students for this work by providing a learning environment in which they acquire the academic competencies of the profession, refine these competencies through application and experience personal and professional development to meet the standards of Fitness for the Profession.

    Combined/Accelerated Degree Option

    Undergraduate University of Scranton Human Services majors with outstanding academic records may be eligible for early admission to the Clinical Mental Health Counseling graduate program through the Accelerated Baccalaureate/Master's Degree Program. (Other relevant majors may also be considered for admission.)

    Interested students must commit to this program no later than the end of their junior year of academic study, adhere to the time frame for application as outlined in Graduate Course Catalog, and meet specific admissions criteria.  We only accept applications for the fall semester. Please visit the Accelerated B.S./M.S. website for additional information.

    Meet the Program Director

    Dr. Willis headshot.

    Benjamin T. Willis, Ph.D., N.C.C., A.C.S.

    Clinical Mental Health Counseling Graduate Program Director Assistant Professor


    Ph.D., The University of North Carolina at Greensboro M.S., The University of North Carolina at Greensboro B.S., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


    (570) 941-6172

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