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Careers in Counseling: Licensed Professional Counselor Jobs 
What is an LPC and What Do They Do?

As awareness of mental health issues increases and individuals continue to seek counseling services, demand for counselors is expected to grow.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of substance abuse, behavioral disorder and mental health counselors—including LPCs—will grow 23 percent from 2020 to 2030. Over the next decade, about 41,000 openings are expected annually on average.

What is a LPC?

A LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor. LPCs are trained to offer assessment, therapeutic interventions, consultation, program evaluation and follow-up services in a variety of settings including schools, hospitals, community agencies, private practices, religious centers, group homes and more. LPCs can also independently practice counseling, meaning they can establish or join a private practice and directly bill insurance companies or receive cash for counseling services.

What are some options for careers in mental health counseling?

Lisa Corbin, PhD, LPC, NCC, serves as director of the Master of Science in Mental Health Counseling program at PCOM—a program that prepares graduates to pursue credentialing to work in the mental health field as a LPC.

According to Corbin, graduates of the program may choose to continue their education or enter the workforce. For those interested in pursuing an advanced degree, popular options include medicine (psychiatry), psychology, law or business. Graduate level certificate programs such as the Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CAADC) or other therapeutic certifications (IFS, CBT, etc.) are another choice for expanding skills.

Jobs for LPCs

For those ready to embark upon a career, Corbin identified several areas in which LPCs are employed:

  • Administration (program manager, program coordinator, program director)
  • Education (career centers, counseling centers, teaching)
  • Medical (outpatient clinics, hospitals, crisis center, specialty care)
  • Advocacy (policy/government, community outreach, national organizations)
  • Social Services (churches, camps, schools, shelters)
  • Insurance (claim review/approvals, chart reviews and auditing)
  • Supervision (supervising people who are preparing for licensure)
  • Research (conducting interviews, facilitating focus groups, applying principles of social sciences research methodology)
  • Consultation, Collaboration and Program Evaluation
  • Other (writing, human resources, military, managing)
How do I find a job as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)?

Regardless of the type of employment an individual chooses to pursue as a Licensed Professional Counselor, Corbin emphasized the value of networking.

“Keep in touch with each other and the people who you graduated with because those people become your colleagues,” Corbin advised.

Volunteering, she added, is another great way to gain experience in the field and launch a career.

“One of the best ways you can network is to get involved in your local or state counseling organization,” Corbin advised.

When searching for a career opportunity to pursue, Corbin suggests keeping an open mind and taking risks.

“Make your own opportunities,” she advised. “Apply for jobs that are out of your reach. You never know what the company might be looking for or how you can sell yourself.”

How do I become a LPC?

For more information about the MS in Mental Health Counseling program and pursuing credentialing as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), please contact the PCOM Office of Admissions or complete our request for information form. Visit the application requirements page to learn about admissions requirements, the application process and the admissions process.

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