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Rehabilitation Counselor

   

Rehabilitation counselors help individuals deal with personal, social, and professional problems associated with disabilities. They assist people with disabilities resulting from accidents, birth defects, illness or diseases, work-related injuries, and the stresses of daily life. They help these people become more self-sufficient by helping them with societal and personal problems, career planning, and by arranging medical care. Rehabilitation counselors evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each patient and design a program that fits with the individual’s abilities. They interview friends and families, evaluate school and medical records, and consult other medical professionals in an effort to determine more precisely what course of action needs to be taken. These counselors try to build bridges between the often isolated world of people with disabilities and the community that surrounds them. The most important way they do this is by evaluating an individual’s potential for independent living and employment. Once they have conferred with psychologists and other medical professionals about a patient’s capabilities, rehabilitation counselors work with individual employers to identify and modify possible job responsibilities. There main objective is to allow an individual with a disability to live as independently as possible. Anyone interested in rehabilitation counseling should be emotionally stable, sensitive to people’s feelings, and have excellent communication skills.


Work Environment:

 

Rehabilitation counselors are often employed in state rehabilitation agencies or community rehabilitation programs.  Other areas of possible employment exist in schools and universities, independent living centers, drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers, halfway houses, correctional facilities, and residential care facilities.

High School Preparation:

Students interested in a career in rehabilitation counseling should take high school courses in biology, geometry, algebra, English, health occupations/medical professions education, literature, psychology, sociology, computer skills, social studies, and speech.


College Requirements:

Although there are no formal prerequisites, individuals interested in rehabilitation counseling should first obtain a bachelor’s degree in rehabilitation services, psychology, sociology, or other human services-related field. Rehabilitation counselor programs are usually 2-4 years in length, and combine academic work as well as field-based clinical experience. The Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) offers voluntary national certification, which is obtained through passing a national examination and completing the required clinical experience.

Students interested in becoming a rehabilitation counselor should contact schools for information on admission and course of study.

For educational institutions in Mississippi
offering this course of study click here.

Career Outlook:

 

Employment opportunities for rehabilitation counselors are expected to be excellent well into the future. The demand for rehabilitation counselors will continue to rise because there are nearly 45 million people in this country with physical, mental, and psychological disorders that prevent them from obtaining or maintaining a job. There are currently not enough students graduating from rehabilitation counseling programs to meet the demand for these professionals. Another rise in employment will result from employers who are increasingly offering rehabilitation services to employees who are injured on the job. Employment will also increase as many counselors retire or leave the profession for other reasons.
 

 

Salary:

 

Average Annual Salary

$31,500

 

Salary Range

$22,800 - $48,000

 

Professional Organizations:

 

National Rehabilitation Counseling Association
PO Box 4480
Manassas, VA

22110-4719
Phone: (703) 361-2077
Fax: (703) 361-2489

http://nrca-net.org/

 

American Rehabilitation Counseling Association
5999 Stevenson Avenue
Alexandria, VA 22304
Phone: 
(800) 347-6647
Fax: (800) 473-2329

www.counseling.

org/arca/

 

Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification

1835 Rohlwing Road, Suite E

Rolling Meadows, IL  60008

Phone: (847) 394-2104

www.crccertifi

cation.com

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