NORFOLK, Va. — The Darden College of Education & Professional Studies at ODU is pleased to share that the Online Clinical Mental Health Counseling program and School Counseling program have become formally recognized by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) Board of Directors this January. The face to face program has been accredited since the mid-1990’s. The faculty recently rolled out the new, fully digital curriculum pathway, and the additional CACREP accreditation is a significant leap forward that enhances the program’s impact in the region and beyond.

The CACREP Board reviewed and approved a Substantive Change Report submitted by the counseling program faculty to add digital curriculum pathways for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling specialty areas — a change that reflects ODU's commitment to innovative education and accessibility.

Tammi Dice, Dean of the Darden College, shared, “Achieving accreditation for our fully digital curriculum pathway in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling specialty areas marks a significant milestone for our program. It reflects our unwavering dedication to providing innovative and high-quality education that meets the evolving needs of our students and the counseling profession. This accreditation approval by CACREP validates our commitment to excellence and affirms our position as a leader in counselor education. I commend the faculty and staff for their hard work and diligence in ensuring the success of this endeavor.”

Clinical Mental Health and School Counseling students are exposed to a wide variety of theories and skills, research and assessment techniques, professional identity and ethical concerns, as well as the importance of advocacy and multicultural-social justice principles for working with clients. Our students can expect to be challenged, supported, and encouraged to excel throughout their learning experience toward earning their master's degree,.Careers for graduates of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program are diverse and in demand, with opportunities in fields such as couples and family therapy, substance abuse, behavioral disorder counseling, general mental health counseling. PK-12 school counselors are also in demand, and focus on counseling, group work, psychoeducation, advocacy, and more. 

The impact of the counseling programs is substantial, addressing critical shortages in mental health services in both the community and schools. The digital curriculum pathway promises to extend the program's reach, enabling more students, including those in remote areas, to access this comprehensive education and training. As a result, the program stands to significantly increase the number of qualified mental health professionals in the region, enhancing community access to essential services.

For more information on Old Dominion University's Master's in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program or School Counseling program and to explore the new digital curriculum pathway, visit the program’s page, or contact the Department of Counseling & Human Services at 757.683.3326.