Key Information: Clinical Mental Health Counseling Graduate Program

What is Counseling?

Counseling is a professional relationship that empowers diverse individuals, families, and groups to accomplish mental health, wellness, education, and career goals.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Clinical mental health counselors are professionals who possess the knowledge, skills, abilities, and training to provide a wide array of clinical mental health services. These persons, with integrity, support the dignity and value each person in society. They make every reasonable effort to protect human welfare, abiding by and supporting the highest professional standards in the profession of counseling.  

About the Program

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program at Fort Valley State University is a sixty (60) credit hour master’s level program. The program is administered by the College of Education and Professional Studies Department of Counseling. The program’s coursework is offered on a semester basis. When enrolled in courses representing approximately nine (9) to twelve (12) hours a semester, a student can expect to complete the program in five (5) to seven (7) semesters. This equates to approximately two and half years (when taking four classes a semester) or three and a half years (when taking three courses a semester).

The program is fully aligned with the standards established by the Council on Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs as well as the requirements of the State of Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapist. This program prepares graduates to work with a diverse population of clients in a variety of settings, such as mental health agencies, private practice, juvenile justice settings, and programs which address drug and alcohol abuse. The program helps students develop effective counseling skills and gain broad-based expertise to meet the counseling needs in Georgia and society at large.

Program Mission

In keeping with the core mission statement for State Universities of Georgia and the mission of Fort Valley State University, the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program strives to further the traditions of excellence in the social sciences by producing quality graduates in the profession of counseling.  

Program Objectives

  • Provide excellence in counselor education through various delivery modalities.
  • Prepare counseling students through mentoring opportunities provided by program faculty and community counseling professionals.
  • Encourage continuous professional development and self-exploration through creative approaches, coupled with honesty and integrity.
  • Provide a productive environment for cutting-edge academic and practical research and the integration of research into the professional counseling field.

Program Vision

It is the vision of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program to build upon the rich heritage and educational opportunities in the historically black college and university experience in order to effect a change in the health of the communities in which our graduates will serve.

Program Accreditation The CMHC program is currently pursuing accreditation through the Council on the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). CACREP is a nationally recognized organization and is recognized by the Council on the Higher Education Accreditation. This organization is also recognized by the State of Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapist as well as the Licensed Professional Counselor Association of Georgia (LPCAGA). Fort Valley State University is regionally accredited through the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC). Graduates of the program will be eligible for Georgia licensure.

Program Delivery Format Most courses are delivered in either a full face to face or hybrid delivery format. Content delivery methods include, lectures, internet activities, handouts, videos, community learning, guest speakers, and presentations. The CMHC program is not an online program; however, with permission, students may be able to take an online course under special circumstances.  For additional information regarding program delivery format guidelines, please review the CMHC Program Handbook.

Program Faculty and Affiliates Our highly trained and skilled faculty provide students with the much needed development to be effective counseling practitioners. Among our faculty are licensed professional counselors, private practitioners, researchers, and writers. All faculty are actively involved in the culture and profession of counseling and are members of professional counseling organizations. Some serve as certified professional counselor supervisors as well as licensed professional counselors.

Program Faculty

Affiliate Faculty

Program Admission

Requirements- Prospective students must meet the following requirements to be considered for admission:

  1. Submission of the Graduate Studies Application;
  2. Submission of three (3) complete reference forms with narrative;
  3. Have earned a grade point average of 2.75 or higher;
  4. Submission of a resume;
  5. Submission of official transcripts from all regionally accredited institutions attended;
  6. Submission of personal and professional essay with regards to the profession of counseling.

All materials must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies before your application will be reviewed by the CMHC admissions team. Partial applications will not be reviewed. Once a full application is received, the admissions team will score the application components as prescribed by the Office of Graduate Studies. The applicant will be notified of their acceptance status by the Office of Graduate Studies. Applications must be received by the admission’s deadline for review. Applications received after the admission’s deadline will be considered for the next admission date.

The Clinical Mental Health Program admits students for the fall and spring semesters. The program does not consider applications for summer admissions.  

Application Deadlines for Graduate Students- Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program

Anticipated Start Term Domestic International
Fall Semester July 15 May 1
Spring Semester November 15 October 1
Summer No Admissions No Admissions

Program Requirements

The required curriculum for the program is detailed below. All courses are three (3) credit hours per course except where noted.

MLHC 5413 Clinical Mental Health Counseling COUN 5623 Counseling Theories and Process COUN 5443 Career and Life Style Development
COUN 5533Fundamentals of Statistics and Measurement COUN 5633 Group Theory and Process COUN 5653 Behavior Assessment / Modification
COUN 5463 Human Growth and Development COUN 5543 Fundamentals of Research MLHC 5762 Case Management
COUN 5553 Multicultural Counseling COUN 5433 Substance Abuse and Addictions Counseling COUN 5734 Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
COUN 5643 Family Counseling and Guidance MLHC 5770 Practicum COUN 5743 Crisis Counseling
COUN 5733 Psychological Tests and Evaluation COUN 5453 Psychopathology MLHC 5772 Internship I
MLHC 5773 Internship II FVSU 0500   Graduate Orientation    0 cr.

All students are assigned an advisor upon admittance to the program. A close working relationship with the advisor can be essential for success in this program. If necessary, please check with the program coordinator for your assigned advisor.

Field experiences- Eligible students must complete three field experiences: Practicum, Internship I, and Internship II. The eligibility for these field experiences is listed in the program handbook and the program field experiences handbook.

Graduation Requirements- Prospective graduates must take and pass all required coursework with a letter grade of “B” or better, obtain and maintain a 3.0 grade point average, pass the Comprehensive Professional Counselor Exam (CPCE), and demonstrate competency with regards to counselor disposition and clinical skills. The CMHC program also adheres with the graduation requirements of the Graduate Studies Office. Please refer to the program graduation handbook as well as the Graduate Student Handbook. (hyperlink)

Student Life

Research and Scholarship- Program faculty take part in research, publishing, and presenting at various national and state conferences.  Students are encouraged and supported to participate in scholarly activities that include research, publications, and presentations. Students in the CMHC program have participated and presented at state and national conferences. They are offered the opportunity to conduct research and publish with faculty.

Professional Development in Counseling-Program students are encouraged to create professional development plans during their time in the program. They attend conferences, trainings, and workshops. The program faculty also provide seminars, trainings, and workshops to students and area professionals. During field experiences, students are required to become members of professional organizations such as American Counseling Association and the American Mental Health Counseling Association.

The program is administered through the College of Education and Professional Studies.

Annual Report

Download or view the Annual Report here.