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Become A Program Counselor

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Working As A Program Counselor

  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • $41,208

    Average Salary

What Does A Program Counselor Do At Jewish Community Center

* Remember that feeling of stepping off the school bus at the end of a long day, knowing that the next few hours would be spent with friends, burning off excess energy, creating some great new art, or getting a jump on homework? Remember thinking that the counselors in the after-school program were the _coolest people ever_? Well guess what? You have the opportunity to both relive those great memories from childhood AND be the coolest person in the room as a School Age Program Counselor at the JCC!
* When the kids are in the pool, so are you, leading a friendly game of sharks and minnows or Marco Polo.
* When the kids are in the gym, you are, too, refereeing basketball, facilitating a friendly game of dodgeball, or leading a jump-rope competition.
* If you're the artsy type and some of your best memories include making iron bead creations, you can be the King or Queen of Creativity in the art room.
* Our School Age Program Counselor facilitates both active and passive programming for children in grades Kindergarten through 5th grade in a safe, secure and fun environment

What Does A Program Counselor Do At Institute for Community Health Promotion, Suny at Buffalo State

* Assists in the planning and implementation of all program activities and in the coordination of LPP activities with other pre-collegiate programs operated by Buffalo State College
* Will oversee the LPP component of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative in collaboration with the Buffalo Public Schools and the New York State Education Department.
* Program counselor assists in the implementation of the Mayor’s Summer Youth Program, Workforce Development, other programs associated with LPP partners, the Parent Component, and works with the LPP summer programs.
* The counselor works in the schools with a focus on developing and implementing a structured male focused series of programs and workshops in a college preparation capacity.
* Some Saturday and evening hours required.
* Other duties as assigned

What Does A Program Counselor Do At Wellspan Health

* The following are essential job accountabilities:1 Responds promptly and appropriately to all calls
* Assesses patients immediate needs
* Stabilizes patient using established crisis intervention techniques
* Utilizes suicide precaution check list as appropriate
* Refers to appropriate agency or service
* Follows up on patient condition as outlined in policy
* Responds to emergency mental health problems in the community
* Applies established guidelines of the Mental Health Act
* Discharges responsibilities of a Mental Health Delegate (including attending hearings as necessary)
* Facilitates admission to a psychiatric facility
* Maintains PCPC certification and other BDAP required annual training
* Remains knowledgeable of all licensed county D&A services
* Arranges detox services as needed
* Provides intake for county D&A funded services
* Utilizes knowledge of community services
* Provides information to inquiries
* Remains updated to available community resources
* Assesses the emergency of the need
* Arranges provision of need following policies and procedures
* Notifies CAP or LCCM of authorized provisions following policies and procedures
* Follows policies and procedures regarding Intensive Case Management patients
* Follows policies and procedures regarding Family Focus patients
* Fosters cooperation between crisis counselors and MH/MR case managers (this would include follow-up calls to case managers regarding contact with their patients)
* Remains aware of mandated reporter status regarding child abuse
* Utilizes Childline as appropriate
* Fosters cooperation between crisis counselors and C&Y case managers
* Reports suspected Elder Abuse situations to AAA
* Fosters cooperation between crisis counselors and AAA case managers
* Documents according to department policy.
* Content includes: 1.
* Psychosocial assessment 2.
* Additional patient information as required 3.
* Referral or resolution 4.
* Follow-up telephone contact30 Completes and submits required forms within established time-frame
* Enters patient information (in computer system) promptly
* Replenishes office supplies as needed.
* About WellSpan:
* WellSpan Health is an integrated health system that serves the communities of central Pennsylvania and northern Maryland.
* The organization is comprised of a multi-specialty medical group of more than 850 physicians and advanced practice clinicians, a home care organization, six respected hospitals, more than 15,000 employees, and 160 patient care locations.
* The region's only accredited Level 1 Trauma Center and Primary Stroke Center with an endovascular neurosurgery program.
* WellSpan is consistently recognized by IMS Health as one of the Top 100 Integrated Health Networks in the United States and has been recognized by Health Imaging and IT as one of the nation's "Top 25 Connected Healthcare Facilities." IMS Health is the leading provider of information services and technology for the healthcare industry.
* The Community:
* WellSpan Health facilities are located in multiple counties across south central Pennsylvania and northern Maryland, all offering an ideal living environment to match the quality of work-life balance you’re seeking.
* The area offers abundant outdoor and cultural activities, including restaurants, theatre, golf courses, hiking trails, water sports and historic tours.
* Additionally, our communities are a short drive from several, large metropolitan areas including the Baltimore/DC metro area and Philadelphia.
* If you value a strong sense of community, the more palatable pace of rural living, and the convenience of a workplace close to home, you’ll realize the advantages of considering WellSpan Health as part of your future.
* Required Skills
* Minimum Education
* Bachelor’s Degree OR
* Minimum Experience
* Two or more years of mental health or crisis intervention experience with unrelated bachelor’s degree
* Min Field Of Expertise
* Psychology, Counseling, Social Work or related field of study
* Other Skills
* Excellent human relations and oral/written communication skills; the ability to provide counsel; organizational abilities; analytical skills; visual ability to observe patient behavior and to prepare documentation and written materials; physical prowess in order to assist patients; ability to work under stress; stamina to work for long time spans; knowledge of and ability in the care and handling of patients in a specific age group; knowledge of basic Emergency Room treatment procedures, psychological medications, human behavior, treatment modalities of Mental Health and Drug and Alcohol clients, CASSP Principals, human service agencies and their functions and a thorough understanding of the Mental Health Law
* Other Requirements
* Requires a valid driver’s license in the current state of residence
* Job Location
* Mt Gretna, Pennsylvania, United States
* Position Type
* Schedule
* On Call as Needed
* Additional Scheduling Info
* On call, as needed
* Additional Requirements
* PA Act73 – Child Abuse Clearance

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How To Become A Program Counselor

Mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists are typically required to have a master’s degree and a license to practice.


To become a mental health counselor or a marriage and family therapist, applicants typically need a master’s degree in psychology, clinical mental health counseling, marriage and family therapy, or a related mental health field. A bachelor’s degree in most fields is acceptable to enter a master’s program.

Counseling programs prepare students to recognize symptoms of mental and emotional disorders and to use effective counseling strategies. Marriage and family therapy programs teach students about how marriages, families, and relationships function and how these relationships can affect mental and emotional disorders.

Many employers prefer to hire counselors who have graduated from programs accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs.


Candidates gain hands-on experience through postdegree supervised clinical work, sometimes referred to as an internship or residency. In training, they learn to provide family therapy, group therapy, psychotherapy, and other therapeutic interventions, under the supervision of a licensed counselor.


All states require mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists to be licensed in the state in which they practice. Licensure requires a master’s degree and 2,000 to 4,000 hours of postdegree supervised clinical experience, sometimes referred to as an internship or residency. In addition, counselors and therapists must pass a state-recognized exam and complete annual continuing education classes.

Contact information for state boards regulating mental health counselors is available through the National Board for Certified Counselors.

Contact and licensing information for marriage and family therapists is available through the Association of Marital and Family Therapy Regulatory Boards.

Important Qualities

Compassion. Counselors and therapists often work with people who are dealing with stressful and difficult situations, so they must be compassionate and empathize with their clients.

Interpersonal skills. Being able to work with different types of people is essential for counselors and therapists. They spend most of their time working directly with clients and other professionals and must be able to encourage good relationships.

Listening skills. Good listening skills are essential for mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists, both of whom need to give their full attention to their clients to understand their problems, values, and goals.

Organizational skills. Good organizational skills are especially important for counselors and therapists in private practice, who must keep track of payments and work with insurance companies.

Speaking skills. Mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists need to be able to communicate with clients effectively. They must express ideas and information in a way that clients can understand easily.

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Program Counselor jobs

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Program Counselor Career Paths

Program Counselor
Direct Support Professional Case Manager Clinical Director
Administrative Director, Behavioral Health Services
11 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Service Director Medical Social Worker
Career Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Program Coordinator Assistant Director Office Manager
Case Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Case Manager Program Coordinator Assistant Director
Center Director
7 Yearsyrs
Case Manager Therapist
Clinical Supervisor
8 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Program Director
Deputy Director
9 Yearsyrs
Substance Abuse Counselor Therapist Program Director
Director Of Residential Services
7 Yearsyrs
Home Health Aid Licensed Practical Nurse Nurse Manager
Emergency Services Director
8 Yearsyrs
Residential Counselor Case Manager Career Manager
Health Care Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Home Health Aid Security Officer Direct Support Professional
Home Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Program Director Specialist Case Manager
Housing Case Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Substance Abuse Counselor Program Coordinator Assistant Director
7 Yearsyrs
Assistant Director Sales Consultant Leasing Consultant
Resident Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Social Worker Specialist Direct Support Professional
Residential Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Residential Counselor Social Worker Program Supervisor
Residential Program Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Program Director Educator Case Manager
Senior Case Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Social Worker Program Manager
Service Program Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Therapist Family Counselor Social Worker
Social Services Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Program Coordinator Social Worker
Social Work Case Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Therapist Program Director
Unit Director
5 Yearsyrs
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Program Counselor Demographics


  • Female

  • Male

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • French

  • Italian

  • Mandarin

  • Chinese

  • German

  • Cantonese

  • Hmong

  • Hindi

  • Arabic

  • Swahili

  • Hebrew

  • Korean

  • Greek

  • Japanese

  • Urdu

  • Somali

  • Akan

  • Indonesian

  • Hawaiian

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Program Counselor

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Program Counselor Education

Program Counselor

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Real Program Counselor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Industrial Technology Education Program Counselor Coral Academy of Science Las Vegas Henderson, NV Jul 19, 2016 $85,527
Rehabilitation Program Counselor North Shore Medical Rehabilitation NY Sep 08, 2014 $62,400
College Program Counselor Columbia College, Inc. Fairfax, VA Apr 13, 2015 $52,853
Asian Program Counselor Metropolitan Jewish Home Care New York, NY Sep 20, 2010 $50,000
Asian Program Counselor Metropolitan Jewish Health System New York, NY Sep 20, 2010 $50,000
Senior Program Counselor Friends of Grace Seniors, Inc. Englewood, NJ Sep 02, 2009 $47,278
University Program Counselor Lado International College Washington, DC Oct 01, 2015 $44,098
College Program Counselor Columbia College, Inc. Fairfax, VA Oct 29, 2012 $42,554
College Program Counselor Columbia College, Inc. Fairfax, VA Oct 31, 2012 $42,554
University Program Counselor BUEI, LLC DBA Harriet Fulbright College Arlington, VA Jul 15, 2013 $42,554
College Program Counselor Columbia College, Inc. Fairfax, VA Apr 15, 2013 $42,554
Youth Program Counselor The National Institute of Family Counseling Vienna, VA Oct 01, 2012 $42,512
College Program Counseler The University of Northern Virginia Manassas, VA May 05, 2010 $41,740
Educational Program Counselor Global Education Institute Inc. Chapel Hill, NC Aug 24, 2014 $41,600
Piano Program Counselor Orchepia School of Music, Inc. Irvine, CA Sep 23, 2015 $41,218
Counselor for ESL Program Washington University of Virginia Inc. Annandale, VA Nov 15, 2015 $40,676
MBA Program Counselor Delaware State University Dover, DE Jan 05, 2015 $39,707
University Program Counselor BUEI, LLC DBA Harriet Fulbright College Arlington, VA Dec 01, 2010 $39,173
Piano Program Counselor Orchepia School of Music, Inc. Diamond Bar, CA Sep 23, 2012 $37,420
Program Counselor New Visions Foundation Santa Monica, CA Oct 01, 2011 $37,420
Program Counselor New Visions Foundation Santa Monica, CA Jan 26, 2012 $37,420
Piano Program Counselor Orchepia School of Music, Inc. Diamond Bar, CA Sep 15, 2012 $37,420
Program Counselor Assistive Technology Resource Centers of Hawaii Urban Honolulu, HI Feb 01, 2012 $36,439
Program Counselor Community Management Assistance C MA Sep 30, 2013 $35,479
Program Counselor John P Holland Community Council, Inc. MA Oct 01, 2010 $35,479
Children's Program Counselor New York Asian Women's Center New York, NY Jul 05, 2012 $34,102

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Top Skills for A Program Counselor


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Top Program Counselor Skills

  1. Aftercare Treatment Plans
  2. Safe Environment
  3. Crisis Intervention
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed aftercare treatment plans, and all required documentation.
  • Performed general cleaning in order to provide a clean and safe environment for residents.
  • Trained in therapeutic crisis intervention and safety care to assist with positive consumer mental health.
  • Report any misconduct or behavioral issues
  • Plan, coordinate and carry out activities while helping campers with personal growth and daily living skills.

Top Program Counselor Employers

Program Counselor Videos

Darryl Cross - Career Guidance Program

A Day in the Life of a School Counselor

Mental Health Counselor, Career Video from drkit.org