Master’s in Mental Health Counseling Now Offered at Marylhurst

Low-residency graduate program to meet growing demand for highly skilled counselors

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At a time when the demand for mental health counselors is rapidly growing – job openings are projected to increase by 22.3 percent in Oregon and 19.8 percent nationwide over the next decade, according to the State of Oregon and U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics – Marylhurst University has stepped up to help fill the gap with a new Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling. This low-residency graduate program will prepare students to obtain licensure as mental health counselors.

Offered alongside Marylhurst’s top-ranked counseling and creative therapies programs such as the nationally recognized M.A. in Art Therapy Counseling, students in the new M.A. in Mental Health Counseling program will pursue a more general credential to prepare for a wide range of careers within the mental health counseling field, with the option to take elective coursework in specialty areas such as spiritual care, art therapy and gerontology.

Marylhurst’s new M.A. in Mental Health Counseling program has been designed to align with Oregon’s Licensed Professional Counselor licensure and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) standards.

“While not mandatory for licensure at this time, mental health counseling education in the United States is moving toward the CACREP standard,” said Dr. Laura Beer, chair of the Department of

Counseling and Creative Therapies at Marylhurst University. Graduates will be prepared to sit for the Oregon Licensed Professional Counselor and National Counselor exams, Beer said.

In this low-residency program, Marylhurst students will complete most coursework online, traveling to campus for week-long seminar sessions twice a year. This format allows the student to complete most of the work where they reside, coming together as a community to live and learn together on the Marylhurst campus.

“In the not too distant future, when people think of Marylhurst, they’ll think of us as the place for low-residency graduate programs,” Marylhurst President Melody Rose said. “Our bachelor’s degree completion programs will often be taught by the same faculty who teach at the graduate level, making for a stellar academic experience for all our students,” she said.

“We’re committed to making it easy for students to move through bachelor’s degree completion and into our graduate programs, if that’s what they want to do,” Rose added. “At Marylhurst, we believe that everything should be easy — except the classes.”

To learn more about admission requirements for the M.A. in Mental Health Counseling or to apply, contact Marylhurst University’s Office of Admissions at 503.699.6268 or [email protected].

For more information about the M.A. in Mental Health Counseling and other Marylhurst programs, visit

Founded in 1893, Marylhurst University is a premier, not-for-profit, professionally focused liberal arts and business university. Marylhurst’s community of scholars, professionals and artists offers exceptional master’s degrees, bachelor’s degree completion programs, courses, continuing education and impressive arts, music and cultural events.