College Counseling is a psychology subspecialty whose practitioners work with students in colleges, universities and community and technical college settings. College counselors emphasize preventive and developmental counseling to enhance students’ personal, social and academic growth. They may also work in specialized areas such as addiction, eating disorders, domestic violence and others.
There are many problems that can stand between a student and their education. As a college counselor, a professional should be mindful of where the students are developmentally, as well as how the brain changes over time. College can be a time of high stress for students and having someone to guide them through their decisions can make all the difference.
What Does a College Counselor Do?
Effective administration of college counseling services largely depends on observation and surveying methods. College counselors are there to listen and guide a student through this very important time in their lives.
A college counselor’s day could involve counseling a student on personal issues that are getting in the way of academic performance. They could also advise as what classes are best for a student’s individual career goals. College counselors share similar responsibilities with high school guidance counselors, but in a somewhat higher-stakes environment.
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Careers in College Counseling
A college counseling degree will should qualify you to work in the Career Center of college, technical or university campus. Each state has multiple institutes of higher learning, and all of these represent job opportunities for the qualified college counselor. However, the field is competitive, and while most schools may hire multiple counselors, some do not.
College counseling salaries largely depend on the size and placement of the university. It also depends on the financial stability. As such, ranges can run a pretty wide spectrum, from $60,000 to nearly $100,000 annually. The market is a competitive one, but if you can secure a position the work is rewarding and often offers good benefits.
Obtaining a College Counseling Degree
Getting your college counseling degree means that you should be well-equipped in coursework related to developmental behavioral science and clinical counseling. A doctorate degree will be required to work at the university level, and likely at smaller schools as well.
Your state’s licensing board will have information on how you can attain full licensure. Many states require onsite training in clinical psychology under a licensed individual. You may also have to take and pass a standardized exam for psychology professionals.