Program overview

Rider’s clinical mental health counseling program provides the foundational knowledge and training for aspiring counselors to obtain licensure and enter rewarding careers within the clinical mental health field. Our expert faculty possess diverse experiences and our program prioritizes clinical field experience. Students will gain the skills to help clients who struggle with anxiety, depression, disordered eating, poor self-esteem, post-traumatic stress disorder, addictions and more. All clinical mental health counseling students take courses that cover the core CACREP content areas and the CACREP clinical mental health counseling specialty area content.

Students may pursue a concentration in dance/movement therapy or choose from a range of electives.

Register for Graduate Open House

Abstract shot of a building

Program features

All students in the clinical mental health counseling program gain preparation for the eight-core content areas of the National Counselor Exam (NCE), required by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) in order to become a National Certified Counselor (NCC). All Students completing the clinical mental health counseling program will also have met the educational requirements for Board Certified Coach (BCC) and for the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and many other states.

Change lives for the better

Become an advocate who empowers clients with diverse identities and cultural backgrounds to reach their potential.

Ready to get started? Visit Information for Counseling Students for more about licensure, certification, internships and more.

Program highlights:

  • Gain extensive and valuable clinical experience as well as self-reflective skills critical to the work of a professional counselor.
  • Clinical mental health counseling students enrolled in the dance/movement therapy concentration use Movement Based Experiential Learning to develop the mind-body connection, understand the healing properties of dance, and gain insights into the creative and transformative processes of dance/movement therapy.
  • Benefit from small classes, with 25 students max in didactic courses and 6-16 students max per clinical and skill-based courses.
  • Clinical mental health counseling students not enrolled in the dance/movement therapy concentration can take two electives and choose from courses in specialty areas of interest, such as play therapy, disordered eating, trauma, and creativity in counseling.
Learn more about our elective offerings
Feet in a dance studio.

Dance/movement therapy concentration

Within the clinical mental health counseling program, students can complete a dance/movement therapy concentration. Students in this concentration combine their passion for dance with a desire to help others. It requires expertise in two different dance/movement forms and a separate dance/movement interview for admission, in addition to other admission requirements.

The dance/movement therapy concentration within this program is approved by the American Dance Therapy Association. Students meet requirements for the Registered Dance Movement Therapist (R-DMT).

Common Careers

All graduates of Rider’s clinical mental health counseling program are well prepared for doctoral programs or counseling positions in community agencies, mental health agencies, hospitals, government facilities, institutions of higher education, corporate settings, and private practice. Students will meet the educational requirements for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in New Jersey and many other states.

Facts and figures

With a 2.5-3 year completion rate for full-time students, a 3+ years completion rate for part-time students and a $70K+ median annual salary for LPCs in NJ ( ZipRecruiter, 2023), this program will prepare you for success. Further data below is updated for AY 2022-2023.

85%

National Counselor Examination for Licensure and Certification (NCE) pass rate

100%

employment rate (Spring '22-Fall '22 graduates)

100%

program completion rate

CACREP-Accredited

Rider’s clinical mental health counseling program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), the premier national accrediting body that ensures excellence in counselor preparation and training. 

The M.A. in counseling and M.A. in clinical mental health counseling programs are on an 8-year accreditation cycle and are CACREP-accredited until March 31, 2031. CACREP accreditation is sought for our programs on an ongoing basis.

A student and professor at a table.

Program requirements

Our clinical mental health counseling program blends traditional classroom learning alongside student participation in counseling fieldwork in a clinical mental health setting. All clinical mental health counseling students take the same 45 credits (36 credits of core courses and 9 credits of fieldwork). Clinical mental health counseling students enrolled in the dance/movement therapy concentration complete a total of 65 credits of coursework and 950 hours of fieldwork. Clinical mental health counseling students not enrolled in the dance/movement therapy concentration complete a total of 60 credits of coursework and 700 hours of fieldwork.

 

Contact

For questions about the clinical mental health counseling program (with or without a dance/movement therapy concentration)

Emmanuel Ahia

Professor, Director of Ed.S. Counseling Services Program, & M.A. Clinical Mental Health Program

Graduate Education, Leadership and Counseling

Bierenbaum Fisher Hall

eahia [at] rider.edu

609-896-5339

Academic Focus: Counseling Services

Contact

For additional questions about the clinical mental health counseling program (with a dance/movement therapy concentration)

Eri Millrod

Assistant Professor II, Director, M.A. Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Dance/Movement Therapy Concentration

Graduate Education, Leadership and Counseling
Department of Performing Arts

Bart Luedeke Center

emillrod [at] rider.edu

609-896-5000 ext. 7067

Academic Focus: Dance/Movement Therapy