At the heart of a counselor is the desire to help people overcome brokenness and pursue wholeness in life. Professional counselors support people through their clinical expertise and willingness to invest their time and energy in the lives of others. At Grand Rapids Theological Seminary, our top-ranked Master of Arts in Counseling program integrates a biblical and theological framework with foundational counseling practices to enhance your career.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the counseling field is projected to grow by 29% between 2012 and 2022 which is almost three times the national average for total job growth. Businesses, organizations, churches and ministries also recognize the need to partner with trained and licensed counselors to care for their people. To gain insight into whether the counseling field might be a good fit for you, consider these questions:
- Are you passionate about helping hurting people find hope in a broken world?
- Do you want to help individuals and families through difficult times?
- Does your heart break for the pain that people experience in daily life?
- Are you excited to share the love of Christ with those who need it most?
- Do you like to listen to and help individuals work through big decisions?
- Are you interested in helping those with mental illness learn how to thrive?
Starting in the fall 2020 semester and going forward, we are moving to a HyFlex approach to the classroom experience. HyFlex means hybrid-flexible, and this course design model combines three different learning modalities into one class.
The M.A. Counseling program requires completion of 69 credit hours, including 18 credits in Bible and theology. This degree program is also available in an online format through Cornerstone University. With flexible scheduling options that include on-campus, online and accelerated classes, completion of this self-paced degree program takes approximately two to four years, and 77% of our students receive financial aid.
We encourage you to arrange your course plan in a way that fits your own desired course loads, interests and available dates and times. The average full-time student takes 12 credits per semester; the average part-time student takes six credits per semester.
Hands-On Learning Experiences
The M.A. Counseling program prepares you to apply for your Limited License as a Professional Counselor (LLPC) upon graduation. To ensure your eligibility for the licensure process, our counseling program offers you opportunities to:
- Gain applied experience in practical and clinical settings. This involves completion of 700 hours of practical experience through three semesters of practicum and internships.
- Develop and refine your counseling skills through concentrated study with experienced professors and mentors. In the M.A. Counseling program, our student-to-faculty ratio is 7:1.
- Choose from five areas of counseling specialization, including addictions counseling, trauma counseling and multi-state licensure.
Holistic Vocational Training
At GRTS, you will identify a counseling career that reflects your calling and encourages you to serve others with the heart of Christ. Through Bible and theology courses designed for future counseling professionals, you can expect to develop a solid philosophical foundation and practical ability to incorporate Jesus' message of healing, restoration and redemption into clinical practice.
In addition, you'll develop critical thinking skills by participating in thoughtful discussions with classmates whose diverse denominational and cultural backgrounds offer alternative perspectives and insights.
Practical Career Preparation
Our M.A. Counseling program prepares you to serve others with the heart of Christ. Through the study of more than 30 different theoretical approaches and learning how to diagnose, treat and care for clients, the program readies you for a variety of meaningful career opportunities, including private practice or part-time positions.
Explore Your Calling as a Counselor
Take the next step to consider your vocational calling as a counselor. Call us at 800.697.1133 to request information about our Master of Arts in Counseling program and financial aid options. Or, you may schedule an in-person campus visit.