UW-Stout News Story

Graduate program in counseling receives national accreditation

September 6, 2012

The Master of Science program in clinical mental health counseling at University of Wisconsin-Stout has been accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs.

The program prepares counselors for professional service. Students receive training and experience in the assessment, diagnosis, treatment and prevention skills necessary to provide comprehensive services for individuals, groups and families.

John KlemIn April the university was visited by CACREP reviewers, resulting in a two-year accreditation; at the end of that time, the program will be re-evaluated and may receive six more years of accreditation.

The importance of accreditation is multifaceted. “First, CACREP sets a really high bar for excellence, therefore many employers look for students trained from these types of programs,” said John Klem, director.

The accreditation status also makes applying for jobs outside of Wisconsin easier. “Each state has different licensure requirements, and it has been tedious for students to prove to state boards that their program met their requirements. With a CACREP degree, student course work is automatically approved,” Klem said.

Also, for students moving on to counseling doctorate programs, graduating from a university with CACREP accreditation is advantageous, he said.

UW-Stout’s program receives more than 75 applications per year, with about 24 students admitted annually. At present the program has around 50 students. With accreditation the program likely will attract more students, Klem said.

“The program is strong and highly selective with a good reputation,” Klem said.

Two other CACREP clinical mental health counseling programs exist in the state. UW-Stout’s five concentrations make its program different from most others in the country, Klem said. “I constantly receive emails from students who are interested in our concentrations.”

The concentrations are career counseling; child and adolescent counseling; eating disorders; gerontological counseling; and alcohol and other drug abuse counseling. The program also can be completed without a concentration.

For more information, refer to the website or contact Klem, 715-232-1303.


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