Life is full of ups and downs that tend to leave a number of people uncertain on their next course of action. When this happens, there is need for consultation from a professional. That is when counselors come into the picture. People with uncertainties prefer going to counselors for advice as they are not judgmental, offer professional help, are objective, and experienced. Professional counselors make their clients comfortable while talking to them and show concern by lending an ear when the client speaks. At the same time, professional counselors keep all information private, never divulging anything to anyone unless absolutely necessary to prevent harm to themselves or others.
Anyone looking to make a career out of helping those in need can enlist in the field of counseling. While counselors with Bachelor’s or Diploma may get consideration, those with a Master’s Degree in Counseling stand a higher chance of getting hired faster in the ever competitive job market. At the same time, most employers offer salaries depending on qualification which makes a master’s degree more lucrative. The current trends have altered so many things including job promotions. During the yester years, most employers promoted workers depending on performance. Currently, job guarantee is pegged on academic qualification which makes further studies the best means for achieving higher goals.
Since counseling deals mainly with mental health and state, a student taking counseling courses at the master’s level has to have had a Bachelor’s for two years, postgraduate for another two years and then master’s for two more years. This makes the years for counseling studies generally around six. While in college, a student will benefit their career by specializing in a niche track. Specialties in this area include counseling psychology, trauma, school counseling, clinical mental health, substance abuse, rehabilitation and many more. Most of the programs incorporate internships to allow students deal with real issues and gather skills to help them handle cases they will encounter when they are eventually employed.
Counseling requires thorough research as it deals with the complexities of human brain, effect of environment on human psyche and human emotions in relation to a variety of other issues. Most of the demanding research work in this field is handled at the graduate level. Research projects are wide and include subjects in measurement, special education and school psychology. After completion of the course, there are exams to obtain certification. Since counseling deals with mental health, counselors are required to obtain license before beginning to work.
Upon completion, a Master’s degree in counseling can set you up for a job as a marriage counselor, school counselor, rehabilitation officer, behavior specialist, psychotherapist or researcher. Potential workplaces are hospitals, prisons, schools, industries, correctional facility and community counseling center. As a professional working in these centers, you will be able to counsel clients using scientifically based theories, research in interventions, apply counseling psychology and assist an individual in decision making. Most counselors prefer to be in private practice as it pays handsomely if you build a stable client base.
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