Why Study at William James College
Top Reasons to Choose the MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling
The Counseling Department at William James College embraces the diversity of experiences, perspectives, and self-identification of our students as related to race, ethnicity, culture, nationality, sex, gender identity, social class, military status, age, religion and spirituality, disability and physical difference, language, and sexual orientation.
William James College views becoming culturally competent as an ongoing process that evolves with the world around us. Therefore, our faculty and staff work with students to begin their journey toward this understanding and establish the foundation for continued development. We believe it is critical for students to not only have the knowledge and skills needed to work with a range of people, but also the self-awareness needed to establish authentic and trusting relationships with people from varied backgrounds. Thus, we focus on encouraging students’ awareness of their own identities, assumptions, values, and biases; increasing their knowledge regarding specific groups, the impact of oppression on marginalized populations, and implications for therapy; and facilitating acquisition of skills needed to effectively work with individuals from diverse backgrounds and experiences.
The Counseling Department faculty values mutual respect and cultural competence in teaching, mentoring, and practice. We are committed to creating a learning space where all students feel recognized, valued, and supported in their quest for personal and professional development.
Personalized academic advising
We have a ratio of 1:12 advisor:students. Our academic advising is done by our full-time or core faculty. The advisors meet with students at least four times per academic year to guide them through the program and in their professional development, and are available as needed. Many of our graduates keep in touch with their advisors after graduation and continue a mentoring relationship.
Integration of diversity and inclusion in all of our courses
We have a very diverse faculty and student body. Our students range from new graduates to career changers; from very young students to grandparents; from international students to those who have lived all of their lives in Massachusetts; and represent many different ethnic, gender, abilities, religious, and socioeconomic circumstances. In the classroom, case vignettes and role-plays include individuals and families from different backgrounds. We include research and literature relevant to different groups.
Small clinical seminars with a faculty supervisor
No more than 8 students (6 in the family therapy cohort). Students learn skills and discuss their field experiences in a safe and supportive atmosphere, learning to give and receive professional feedback from one another.
Individualized help in finding practicum and internship placements
We have a dedicated full time Associate Director of Field Education who walks you through the process, from resume and cover letter preparation, to selection of sites for application, to interview process, to ensuring that your experience complies with the state regulations for LMHC requirements. We have affiliations with a myriad of organizations that provide services to different populations in Massachusetts, and some sites in New Hampshire and Rhode Island for those students who commute from our neighboring states.
Our faculty not only teach the current theories and practice methodologies in the field, but they are engaged in different aspects of practice: therapy, consultation, assessment, and supervision, among others. They bring their experience to the classroom and draw from the students’ experience in the field to make the classes more relevant.
Courses taught mainly by full-time or core faculty
We have 9 full-time and 1 part-time faculty members who teach the majority of the courses. A few adjunct faculty members complement our teaching staff.
Collaborative versus competitive environment
One of the most important skills in the field of Counseling is collaborating with other professionals, agencies, families, and clients. We foster this skill in our program by creating a collaborative environment as opposed to a competitive, cutthroat, “me-first” place. Students take courses with students from different areas of emphasis, and this contributes to a richer perspective and exchange of ideas.
Close Cohort and Learning Community
Our students feel supported by their peers and the faculty. Our community is guided by the principle of social justice. We are surrounded by people working towards a common goal of making this world a better place to live, and helping others achieve their true potential.
Work while attending school
Many of our students hold jobs while completing our program, and some use their job as placement. Job schedules need to be flexible to accommodate the course schedule and field requirements. Many of the courses are available in a blended (hybrid) format for more schedule flexibility. We work with you to find the right balance.
Life-long Career Services
We offer life-long career coaching services and resources from the moment you join us and for our graduates. No matter where you live, you can speak to a coach through phone, Zoom (online platform), or in person.
First Generation Students Support
We are very proud of our first generation students and graduates. Many of our faculty are also first generation graduates, and we are committed to mentoring first generation students in their adaptation to graduate school and professional life. We value you and the contributions you will make to the counseling profession.
Veteran and Military friendly college
William James College has a unique approach to training military personnel and veterans, and those who would like to work with them. We have the Train Vets to Treat Vets program that seeks to prepare veterans to provide mental health services to their peers, and a concentration in Military and Veteran Psychology that prepares mental health providers to provide services to this population in great need.
Immersion experiences abroad
For students who are part of the concentrations in Latino Mental Health, African and Caribbean Mental Health or Global Mental Health, there are opportunities to do immersion experiences in Ecuador, Kenya, Guyana and Haiti. These experiences during the summer term complement academic work done during the school year.
Free parking on campus
You do not have to fight for a parking space or pay any fee.