New Addictions Counseling Certification and Minor Offered

November 5, 2019
By: Worcester State University News

A new, one-year/two-year Addictions Counseling Certification Program will allow people who work full time to obtain a certificate in Addictions Counseling leading to a formal license with the State of Massachusetts that will help them make a difference within a growing field with strong employment potential.

The certificate focuses on the basic competencies associated with helping people who are recovering and sustaining wellness from substance abuse disorders. It will provide students with knowledge that map the core competencies outlined by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s Bureau of Substance Abuse Services (BSAS). The BSAS has approved the Addictions Counseling Certification Program and recognized Worcester State University as an Addictions Education Provider. The completion of the certificate may lead to licensure in Massachusetts.

The ideal career process is to obtain the addictions counseling certificate, work at a qualified job to fulfill the practicum hours, and then take the licensure exam. Obtaining a license demonstrates the highest form of competence and recognition, which many employers or clients look for in employees within the substance abuse or health care services.

The new Addictions Counseling minor is also available for matriculated student and allows for 18 transferable credits to complete the undergraduate minor. The coursework for the minor can be completed during the four-year undergraduate program of study along with the major degree coursework. Additionally, six additional credits can be taken as two practicum courses after the completion of the core six courses, and will lead to receiving the certificate along with the minor.

The U.S. News & World Report reported that the Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected a 23.2 percent employment growth between 2016 and 2026 for substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors. Increasing the number of admissions and referrals for substance use services is a proposed objective for Healthy People 2030.

For more information about the Addictions Counseling Minor, please contact Cheryl Hersperger at Non-matriculated students who would like to learn more about the Addictions Counseling Certificate should contact Elena Arranz at

Written by Julia Konow, Marketing and Communications intern.

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