MS in Counseling

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Rehabilitation Counseling Specialization

The Master of Science in Counseling with a specialization in Rehabilitation Counseling prepares students to work in a variety of settings including state agencies, the Veterans Administration, hospitals, rehabilitation agencies, insurance rehabilitation, for advocacy groups, or as a business consultant. The program provides students with a mix of classroom and field-based experiences to prepare them to be successful in the field. Interns can take the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Exam so that upon graduation they can become a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, the nationally recognized certification in the field. View the Curriculum page for specific course requirements. 

In addition, the program is currently recognized by the Iowa Board of Behavioral Science as meeting the academic requirements for licensure as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Iowa.

Community Ties

The rehabilitation program has strong ties to the community. Professionals from the community are often invited to teach classes or be guest speakers.

Drake is also committed to advancing the field. The National Rehabilitation Institute was established at Drake in 1976. The Institute conducts research, manages federal research and training grants, and provides pre-service and in-service training in the areas of rehabilitation counseling, placement, and leadership.  Drake is also a member of National Council on Rehabilitation Education.  Faculty are members of the Iowa Rehabilitation Association, National Rehabilitation Association, the American Counseling Association, and Nation Council on Rehabilitation Education.

Job Outlook

The American Counseling Association (ACA) recently conducted a comprehensive survey looking at counselor compensation and benefits across the profession.  Survey results indicated that, Rehabilitation Counselors were named the highest paid specialty in the counseling profession and additionally earned better overall benefits. 

According to the ACA study:

  • Rehabilitation Counselors are the most highly paid counseling specialty on average
  • Rehabilitation Counselors earn over $13,000 more than Clinical Mental Health Counselors, Mental Health Counselors, or Community Counselors on average
  • Rehabilitation Counselors receive better overall benefits - employee retirement plan, medical coverage, dental, vision, short-term and long-term disability - than other professional counselors

This program is accreditated by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP).  

Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) logo

Program Contact

Dr. Matt Bruinekool
Associate Professor of Counseling Education

Learn more

Additional supervised experience post-graduate and licensure exams are required after completion of coursework and graduation from Drake University. Information on this process is available in the resources section of the internship course and the Behavioral Sciences board website at the Iowa Department of Public Health.

For more information on certification:

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