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Master of Science in Counseling


  • 24 months to complete the program
  • Among lowest tuition in region
  • Choose Addictions, Clinical Mental Health, or School Counseling
  • Learn from a Christian perspective
  • Be part of a small class led by caring faculty
  • GRE not required if undergrad GPA is 3.00
  • Assistance finding practicum and internship placement

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Employment & Licensure Success

As of December 2017, Milligan’s School Counseling graduates have a 100% licensure rate and job placement rate (for those actively seeking employment in their field).  The Clinical Mental Health Counseling graduates have a 94% NCE pass rate and 90% of those desiring a job in the professional field of mental health counseling are employed.

Our Mission

The MSC program at Milligan College will prepare graduates to demonstrate excellence as servant leaders in the field of professional counseling.

Program Objectives:

  • Students demonstrate excellence in professional counseling knowledge and skills and advance to candidacy. (short-term objective)
  • Students complete the program, begin professional careers, and obtain professional licensure. (mid-term objective)
  • Alumni are successful as evidenced by being LPCs in good standing, becoming site supervisors, and taking on leadership roles in professional and at large communities. (long-term objective)

Options

Milligan offers three concentrations in the MS in Counseling program:

Convenience

Classes are scheduled in late afternoons and evenings. The program consists of six full semesters, including two summer sessions. You can complete the program in two years or go at your own pace. A new class of students enrolls each fall semester and follows a fall-spring-summer rotation, finishing after the second summer. Courses meet on the main campus of Milligan College in Northeast Tennessee, and some courses are available online.

Caring Faculty

Our caring faculty are dedicated teachers, experienced professionals, and trusted mentors who invest time, energy, and ideas to inspire you and help you reach your highest potential. They are dedicated Christian professionals who go above and beyond to challenge you and stretch your mind. They bring real world experience into the classroom every day because they continue to work in the fields they teach. Small class sizes provide personal interaction, exceptional training, and hands-on lab experience that will prepare you for success as a Licensed Professional Counselor or school counselor. Teaching you is more than a job to our faculty — it’s a mission.

Affordable

Tuition for the M.S. in Counseling program at Milligan College is $460 per credit hour, which is one of the most economical counseling programs in our region and is even priced below the local state university rate. Financial aid is available for graduate students. Learn more about the types of aid available and your payment options »

Accreditation

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program (MSC) at Milligan College is accredited by The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) (1001 North Fairfax St, Suite 510, Alexandria, VA 22314; 703.535.5990).

Curriculum

View all details and course requirements for this program in the Milligan College Catalog (link below). The Milligan College academic catalog is the official, authoritative source for all academic requirements and policies. Any discrepancies in curricular requirements from other sources will default to the Catalog.

CATALOG »

The Milligan Counseling Center

The Milligan Counseling Center offers counseling services for the health and well-being of our campus community and provides an internship or practicum experience for Master of Science Counseling students. Learn more about the Counseling Center and how to schedule an appointment »

Early Acceptance Program: MSC

The Early Acceptance Program (EAP) provides Milligan undergraduate students with a unique financial and academic opportunity to apply and commit early to the MSC in order to receive lower tuition rates and secure their spot early in the program. Learn more »

Addictions Counseling

As drug abuse continues to climb, our state and country need trained counselors to help those who are suffering from addiction and related problems that go hand in hand with addiction.

This program will prepare you to be a licensed addictions counselor. Addiction counselors are professionals that work with children, teens, and adults suffering from drug abuse problems and other addictions. Together with the client, they identify the addiction, point out the associated behaviors and implement a plan of recovery. With the client, they work on the problems that drug abuse causes and confront emotional and behavioral problems that exist. Addiction counselors treat the addiction at its core and track the progress that the client makes along the recovery journey. Addiction counselors keep the client and the family of the client up to date on treatment information, drug information, and the progress being made. It is their job to educate people about drugs, drug treatment and life after treatment. If necessary, they also arrange treatment at facilities that offer mental health counseling, healthcare, and other coordinated services. The main focus of an addiction counselor is the client’s recovery.

The Opioid Crisis

Every day, more than 130 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids. The misuse of and addiction to opioids—including prescription pain relievers, heroin, and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl—is a serious national crisis that affects public health as well as social and economic welfare. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the total “economic burden” of prescription opioid misuse alone in the United States is $78.5 billion a year, including the costs of healthcare, lost productivity, addiction treatment, and criminal justice involvement.

Approximately 10% of all people, regardless of culture, will experience a substance use disorder at some point in their life. In the United States, approximately 2.1 million have an opioid use disorder. Closer to home, Tennessee continually ranks in the top 5 U.S. States in terms of substance abuse rates. One of the causes of addiction is emotional trauma, especially childhood trauma.  Approximately half of those people will go without treatment.

Drug overdose deaths continue to increase in the United States:

  • Roughly 21 to 29 percent of patients prescribed opioids for chronic pain misuse them.
  • Between 8 and 12 percent develop an opioid use disorder.
  • An estimated 4 to 6 percent who misuse prescription opioids transition to heroin.
  • About 80 percent of people who use heroin first misused prescription opioids.
  • Opioid overdoses increased 30 percent from July 2016 through September 2017 in 52 areas in 45 states.
  • The Midwestern region saw opioid overdoses increase 70 percent from July 2016 through September 2017.
  • Opioid overdoses in large cities increase by 54 percent in 16 states.

In-Demand Profession

These statistics indicate that there is a growing need for substance abuse and other counselors.  The U.S. Department of Labor expects the demand for Substance Use Disorders/Addiction Counselors to grow by 22% by 2024.

Most addiction professionals are employed in the following industries: outpatient care centers; mental health and substance abuse facilities; individual and family services; local government; general medical and surgical hospitals; psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals; and private practice. Many other addiction professionals work in prisons, probation or parole agencies, juvenile detention facilities, halfway houses, detox centers and employee assistance programs.

Add-On for Current LPCs

Current licensed clinical mental health counselors can add on the addictions subspecialty in as few as two semesters. Request more info »

Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC)

After completing the Master of Science in Counseling degree and completing a minimum of two years (at least 10 hours a week) of supervised professional experience, graduates are eligible to sit for licensure in Tennessee as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Reciprocity agreements may allow TN licensure to apply in other states. Students should check other state requirements before applying to the program. Read more about Licensed Professional Counselors »

Partnerships

Milligan’s addictions counseling program enjoys support from some of our state’s leading healthcare organizations including Ballad Health and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee, whose lead gifts provided the start-up funding for the program.

Curriculum

The addictions subspecialty is a two-year (six semesters), 60 credit hour curriculum that prepares graduates to pursue licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) with a subspecialty in addictions counseling. Courses are offered on the Milligan campus, with some hybrid (online and on-campus). Courses include those needed for a broad understanding of mental health counseling (42 credit hours in human behavior and development, evidence-based practice, effective counseling strategies, ethical practice, and other core knowledge areas), as well as six courses (18 hours) necessary to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to address a wide range of issues in the context of addiction counseling. Because Milligan is a Christian college, part of the required coursework includes an ongoing discussion and examination of the theoretical and practical aspects of the integration of faith and learning.

Click here to view the curriculum »

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SOURCES:
https://www.naadac.org/what-is-an-addiction-professional
https://drugabuse.com/drug-abuse-careers/
https://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/opioids/opioid-overdose-crisis
https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db294.htm
https://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/opioids/opioid-overdose-crisis

Clinical Mental Health Counseling

This program will prepare you to use a combination of mental health and human development principles, methods, and techniques to help people achieve mental, emotional, social, and career development and adjustment. You will be able to work in a variety of settings, such as private, institutional, community, Christian, military, or nonprofit, providing counseling to individuals, couples, families, groups, and organizations.

Emotional and Mental Health

Counselors help people cope with emotional and mental problems stemming from marital and family issues, antisocial behavior, occupational stress, interpersonal relations, and bereavement. Professional counselors help clients identify goals and potential solutions to problems, improve communication and coping skills, strengthen self-esteem, and promote behavior change and optimal mental health.

Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC)

After completing the Master of Science in Counseling degree and completing a minimum of two years (at least 10 hours a week) of supervised professional experience, graduates are eligible to sit for licensure in Tennessee as a Licensed Professional Counselor. Reciprocity agreements may allow TN licensure to apply in other states. Students should check other state requirements before applying to the program.

Read more about Licensed Professional Counselors »

In-Demand Profession

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of mental health counselors is expected to grow by 24% between 2008 and 2018, much faster than the average for all occupations. Medial annual wages of mental health counselors in 2014 are $40,580. Industries employing the largest numbers of mental health counselors include local government, other health practitioners, outpatient care centers, individual and family services, and residential mental health and substance abuse facilities.

Accreditation

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program (MSC) at Milligan College is accredited by The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) (1001 North Fairfax St, Suite 510, Alexandria, VA 22314; 703.535.5990).

Curriculum

The clinical mental health counseling program is a two-year, 60 credit hour curriculum that prepares graduates to pursue licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). The curriculum consists of 42 credit hours of required coursework in human behavior and development, evidence-based practice, effective counseling strategies, ethical practice, and other core knowledge areas; 9 credit hours of clinical experience (practicum and internships); and 9 elective hours from selected topics such as crisis intervention, substance abuse counseling, child and adolescent counseling, child sexual abuse, end of life issues, and physiological psychology and pscyhopharmacology. Because Milligan is a Christian college, part of the required coursework includes an ongoing discussion and examination of the theoretical and practical aspects of the integration of faith and learning.

CATALOG »

School Counseling

The program will prepare you to pursue licensure as a school counselor. The school counseling curriculum consists of 48 credit hours for licensed teachers or 54 credit hours for students without teaching licensure. Both the licensure and non-licensure tracks include  supervised internships in elementary and secondary schools that provide direct experience. Because Milligan is a Christian college, part of the required coursework includes an ongoing discussion and examination of the theoretical and practical aspects of the integration of faith and learning.

In-Demand Profession

Employment of school and career counselors is expected to grow by 19 percent from 2010 to 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Rising student enrollments in elementary, middle and high schools are expected to increase demand for school counselors. As enrollments grow, schools will require more counselors to respond to the needs of their students.

Curriculum

The School Counseling concentrations (Concentrations Two and Three) are either a two-year, 48 credit hour curriculum (for those students who are already licensed teachers) or a two-year 54 credit hour curriculum (for those students who are not licensed teachers). The curricula consist of 27 credit hours in core courses in human behavior and development, effective counseling strategies, ethical practice, and other core knowledge areas; 9 credit hours of clinical experience (practicum and internship); and 12 hours in courses involving counseling and assessment of children and adolescents and other issues specific to educational settings. Those students who are not licensed teachers complete 6 additional hours in curriculum methods and education of exceptional students.

CATALOG »

Admission

NEXT start date: fall 2020

APPLY NOW »

How to Apply

In order to be considered for admission for this program, the minimum requirements and steps are as follows:

DISCOUNTED PRE-REQ COURSES

You might be able to take some prerequisite courses at Milligan at a reduced rate. Learn more »

  1. PREREQUISITES: An undergraduate degree that includes the following prerequisite courses:
    • At least 9 hours of psychology courses, including General Psychology, Developmental Psychology, and Research Methods or Statistics
    • Computer Competency (3 hrs) (can be fulfilled through documented computer competency)
  2. UNDERGRAD DEGREE: Completed baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited college with overall undergraduate grade point average of 3.0.
  3. APPLICATION: Completed application with personal statement.  Apply online!
  4. TRANSCRIPTS: Official transcripts from every college attended whether or not the applicant graduated from that school must be mailed by your college(s) directly to Milligan.
  5. GRE: The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required if an applicant’s overall undergraduate grade point average is 3.00 or higher. If not, request that your official GRE scores be sent to Milligan’s Office of Graduate & Professional Studies. Milligan College’s GRE code is 1469.
  6. REFERENCES: Two professional or educational recommendations will be requested from within the online application.
  7. INTERVIEW: On-campus interview scheduled for qualified applicants.
  8. INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: This program is approved by SEVIS to accept international applicants. International students must complete the application requirements for this program AND the international application requirements and immigration/visa process outlined here » 

Please return all application materials to:

Office of Graduate & Professional Studies
PO Box 22
Milligan College, TN 37682

Please feel free to contact the Office of Graduate & Professional Studies to verify the receipt of the above application requirements. If you have any questions, please contact the college at 800.262.8337 or 423.461.8424 or by e-mail.

Expectations and Responsibilities

All students at Milligan are expected to uphold the expectations and responsibilities for student lifestyles at Milligan College. Milligan College adopts specific rules on the basis of the belief that God’s Word, as the final rule of faith and practice, speaks on many matters pertaining to personal conduct. Therefore, behavior that conflicts with Scripture is unacceptable. Historically, communities also have developed guidelines that help put into practice basic moral and social principles. Such standards serve as a guide toward worthwhile goals relevant to one’s academic, spiritual, social, and physical well-being.

Students should consult the Student Handbook for further guidance regarding acceptable personal lifestyle and conduct while enrolled at Milligan College. A student’s matriculation and enrollment at Milligan College is their pledge to uphold the policies and expectations outlined in the Student Handbook and Catalog.

Early Acceptance Program

Early Acceptance Program: MSC

The Early Acceptance Program (EAP) provides Milligan College undergraduate students with a unique financial and academic opportunity to apply and commit early to the MSC in order to receive lower tuition rates and secure their spot early in the program.

 Benefits

  • Locks in tuition rate
  • Secure your spot in the program
  • Lighten your course load during the MSC program by taking 1-2 MSC courses as an undergraduate

Requirements & Process

  1. MILLIGAN UNDERGRAD: Be a Milligan undergraduate student (any major eligible; prerequisites are required)
  2. PARTICIPATION FORM: By fall of junior or senior year, complete and submit (to the GPS Office) the Participation form* for the EAP, which requires approval signatures from both your undergraduate advisor and MSC faculty director
  3. APPLY TO MSC: Complete the MSC admission process, be admitted, and pay deposit by following deadline in order to lock-in that year’s tuition rate:
    • JUNIORS – by APRIL 15
    • SENIORS – by NOV 15
  4. COURSEWORK: Complete the MSC graduate coursework for the Accelerated Plan
    • JUNIORS can take two MSC courses their senior year (one course each semester) in addition to their normal undergraduate course load.
    • SENIORS can take one MSC course the spring of their senior year in addition to their normal undergraduate course load.

*Approval to declare the Early Acceptance Program is not a guarantee of your admission to the Milligan MSC program.

Local Professionals Resources & Information

Milligan College’s Counselor Education Program is in the process of planning additional trainings for area professionals. If you have a suggestion or request for a training you would like to attend, please submit these to Dr. Rebecca Sapp.

Faculty

Dr. Christine Browning

Christine Browning

Associate Professor of Counseling

Phone: 423.461.3513
Contact via email
Office: Baker Faculty Office Center, 104

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Dr. Joy Drinnon

Joy Drinnon

Professor of Psychology; Director of Undergraduate Research

Phone: 423.461.8661
Contact via email
Office: Hardin Hall, 201

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Dr. Angela Hilton-Prillhart

Angela Hilton-Prillhart

Associate Professor of Education; Area Chair of Education; Director of the M.Ed. Program; Director of Teacher Certification

Phone: 423.461.8769
Contact via email
Office: Baker Faculty Office Center, 105

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Dr. Rebecca Sapp

Rebecca Sapp

Associate Professor of Counseling; Director of the Counseling Center; Director of the Master of Counseling Program; Practicum and Internship Experiences Coordinator

Phone: 423.794.3071
Contact via email
Office: Derthick Hall, 106C

Read More ->