TopCounselingSchools.org, a national higher education information website, recently ranked the University of Houston-Victoria’s counselor education graduate programs fourth in Texas.
The website included the UHV School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development’s Master of Education in clinical mental health counseling and school counseling programs in its 10 Top Value Counseling Master’s Degrees in Texas.
The clinical mental health counselor program also received a rank of 12th on the Colleges Values Online’s list of Online Masters in Counseling: Top 30 Values 2016-2017. The program offers a blend of face-to-face, hybrid and online courses.
“UHV’s graduate counseling education programs are focused on training excellent counselors to serve the community,” said Fred Litton, dean of the UHV School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development. “These acknowledgements of our programs’ affordability and excellence are clear validations, and I am proud to see this well-earned recognition.”
The ranking by TopCounselingSchools.org was determined by several factors, including accreditation by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Programs, length of accreditation, program completion rates, tuition, job placement and license examination passing rates. The College Values Online ranking is based on tuition for in-state and out-of-state students.
“One of the benefits of offering a CACREP-accredited program is our students have a marked advantage throughout their careers,” said Elsa Soto Leggett, a UHV associate professor and counseling graduate program coordinator. “UHV alumni have better reciprocity in other states than students from programs that aren’t CACREP accredited as well as first pick of jobs and a wider range of insurance networks.”
Part of what makes the UHV graduate counseling programs stand out is the university’s focus on students working in the field, Leggett said. Students take three courses of internships or field work, which equates to 700 hours of experience. Texas only requires 300 hours.
In addition to the emphasis on gaining hands-on experience, UHV’s counseling faculty members are all Licensed Professional Counselors, Leggett said.
“Our students have the benefit of learning from people who have spent time in the field they are teaching,” Leggett said. “That experience translates into better insight for students.”