MEd in Professional Counseling, Clinical Mental Health Counseling Concentration

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The MEd in professional counseling, clinical mental health concentration is a 60 credit masters program leading to eligibility as a Licensed Associate Counselor (LAC), the first step towards obtaining the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) credential in the state of New Jersey. (NOTE: A passing score on the National Certification Exam is required in order to apply for the LAC and/or LPC.) The program consists of a common core of 42 credits, 12 credits specific to mental health counseling, plus six credits of electives.

Currently, in order to be an approved counselor for TRICARE (the military medical system) you must be a fully licensed counselor (LPC) who has graduated from a CACREP accredited Masters program and who has qualified to be a CCMHC. Effective January 1, 2022 a Masters degree from a CACREP accredited Masters program will be required in order to obtain any certification issued by the National Board of Certified Counselors. These certifications include National Certified Counselor (NCC), Certified Clinical Mental Heath Counselor (CCMHC), Master Addictions Counseling (MAC), and National Certified School Counselor (NCSC).

View Requirements and Course Descriptions in the University Course Catalog
Click here: Professional Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Concentration, MED 

Admission Requirements

  • Cumulative grade point average of no less than 2.75 on 4.00 scale or a master’s degree from an approved college/university.
  • Essay
  • Two professional letters of reference.
  • Interview with counseling faculty and writing sample.

Application Deadline

August 1st: Fall semester
December 1st: Spring semester
*Applications received after the deadline will be reviewed on a space availability basis

*International students are advised to apply by:
April 1st: Fall (September intake)
November 1st: Spring (January intake)


Professor Michelle Hinkle
Program Director, Department of Special Education, Professional Counseling, and Disability Studies

Additional Information

In order to graduate from the program students must successfully complete a student portfolio as well as passing the comprehensive exam. In addition, mental health students wishing to apply for the Licensed Associate Counseling (LAC), the first step to the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) credential, must pass the National Certification Exam (NCE) (the licensing exam in the state of New Jersey). Since the Professional Counseling program is a CACREP accredited program, students may take the NCE at William Paterson University during their internship semester. The exam is typically given in April. After successfully completing 60 credits, the student portfolio, the comprehensive exam, and the NCE, students are eligible to apply for the LAC.

*Please be advised that admissions requirements, curriculum, and course schedules are subject to modification.

There are approximately 92 matriculated students in the Professional Counseling Program (2021-2022). Of those students, approximately 80% identify as female, 15% identify as male, and 10% identify as non-binary. The racial make-up of students is approximately 50% White, 32% Hispanic, 10% Black/African American, 1% Pacific Islander, 1% Asian, 1% Multi-Racial, and 14% unidentified. Approximately 95% of matriculated students graduate from the program in the expected time frame, three years for full time students and four years for part time students. We have a program completion rate of 95% along with a job placement rate of 95% for our students/graduates.

In 2022 there were 4 graduates from the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Concentration and 9 graduates from the School Counseling Concentration. Out of the 13 graduates, all students completed the National Counselor Exam (NCE), resulting in a program pass rate of 87%, with Clinical Mental Health Counseling Concentration students achieving a 100% pass rate.