MUBlog recently announced the official details of the new Master of Arts in Counseling (MAC) degree. Recently, we got some commonly asked questions answered by our "Master of Counseling" Dr. Elizabeth List.
Interview with Elizabeth List, PsyD
Tell me a little about the Masters in Counseling Program at Multnomah University.
The Masters of Arts in Counseling degree at Multnomah is a 62 semester-credit-hour program for working students who are interested in a career in counseling. We are fully accredited by the Northwest Commission of Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) and the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) and we are currently under the guidance of the Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists to ensure that we meet educational licensing requirements.
Our desire with this program is to focus on two distinct goals:
- Merging faith integration and academic quality
- Offering practical information from practicing professionals.
We want to produce quality, biblically-based counselors that will be able to work in any venue in which God calls them, whether that be secular or church-based.
What kind of career can you have with a Masters in Counseling?
The M.A in Counseling program is designed to meet the educational requirements for licensure by the Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC). Licensed Professional Counselors may seek employment in counseling agencies, private practice, hospitals, para-church organizations, educational settings, human service agencies, or may go on to pursue a doctorate in clinical Psychology.
Can you work in a school with a Masters in Counseling?
The M.A. in Counseling degree prepares you to counsel many different populations, including children, adults, teens, groups, families, and couples, with many different kinds of issues. While you will be trained to counsel children and their families, you will not be considered a School Counselor. A school counselor is a profession that results from a Masters Degree in School Counseling (which we do not currently offer). The Masters in School Counseling distinct degree is necessary in order to work in the school system with children.
You said before that this program is designed for working students. How does that work?
Our program is offered at night and on the weekends in order to allow students to work full time for at least the first year of the program.
- The bulk of the classes are offered one night a week, from 6-10pm, one at a time.
- There are a few weekend elective courses (Friday night and all day Saturday) that are offered once a month as well.
- In the second year of the program, each student must complete an internship where they practice what they are learning in the "real world." While the internship will probably take some time away from working, we are committed to flexibility with this time in order to help working students find a balance between work and school.
Our small cohort-style classes are also designed for the adult student. A masters degree in any form is a lot of hard work. Our class design allows for students to get to know each other and their professors in a personal way. Throughout the classes, cohorts grow to support each other in their endeavors to finish the program. Many cohorts continue to meet and fellowship on their own long after they are finished with their degree.
What is the internship program like at Multnomah?
Oregon law requires 600 hours of internship while students are in their masters program. Multnomah will partner with each student to place them in an internship that meets the internship requirements of the state. The internship hours are to be accumulated in the second year of the program. If students desire to graduate within the timeframe of their classes, students should complete approximately 11 hours of internship a week. Those who cannot dedicate this much time to internship in the second year may work out an internship plan with their advisor to complete internship hours after they finish their coursework.
What if a student wants to pursue a license in another state?
While this degree meets Oregon licensure requirements, this does not mean that you cannot receive licensure in other states with this degree. The Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists is aware of national standards and works to meet them, if not exceed them. If you know that there is a possibility that you will be going to another state, the best thing to do is to talk to your advisor about this so that we can make sure that your educational requirements are met in the state you want to be licensed in.
Anything else you want to add?
I am very excited about this program and its potential to reach those who need highly qualified and Biblically-centered counselors. I believe that caring for the suffering is one of the most loving thing anyone can do. If you feel that God is calling you to this ministry, then this program is for you.