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Make Your Impact with a Master of Science Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Northern Vermont University

NVU’s program prepares you for careers that promote individual and community wellness, resilience, and recovery.

A Weekend Format That Works for Working Adults

The master of science program in clinical mental health counseling is designed to be highly accessible to working adults in order to encourage a diverse group of students, including people currently working in mental health, substance use treatment programs, or related fields, people in recovery and their family members, and the general public.

The program combines face-to-face instruction, remote, and distance-learning activities geared to adult learners. We offer intensive weekend instruction in classes one weekend a month for cohorts in Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Wisconsin, and Alaska.

Graduates demonstrate a strong grounding in the knowledge and skills of the counseling profession, as well as in person-centered and strength-based approaches; culturally competent practice in a multicultural and diverse society; integrated, evidence-based clinical practice in mental health and substance use disorders; and a commitment to leadership, systems change, and advocacy in the profession, the community, and the larger society.

The program is administered by Northern Vermont University for all states, and the program offered is identical across sites in terms of curriculum, faculty expertise, and delivery model.

The master of science in clinical mental health counseling offers graduate education for students interested in pursuing licensure as clinical mental health counselors:

  • in a program highly relevant to today’s world;
  • in a format accessible to adult learners;
  • with classes that meet one weekend a month;
  • with faculty who are scholar-practitioners and who bring national and local expertise in clinical mental health and substance use disorders counseling, integrated service delivery, research, and administration;
  • with content that is relevant to a wide variety of clinical mental health and community and private practice settings.

(Program not available for international students.)

The curriculum offers an innovative integrated approach to mental health and substance use disorder counseling. Students also complete coursework for their chosen specialization in counseling for children, youth and families, or for adults, with unique courses in early childhood and family mental health and health/mental health and aging.

Over the course of the program’s long history, the Annapolis Coalition has recognized it as an Innovative Practice in five categories: consumer and family/adult mental health, child/adolescent and school-based mental health, leadership, rural mental health, and substance use disorders treatment and persons in recovery.

Our unique, nationally recognized curriculum will prepare you to meet the educational requirements for licensure as a clinical mental health or professional counselor in each of the locations in which it is offered, as well as surrounding areas. The curriculum also covers much of the content required for certification or licensure as a counselor for substance use disorders, and many of our graduates pursue dual licensure. Licensure is not guaranteed. It is under the jurisdiction of state licensing boards, and you must meet post-master’s practice requirements and pass the required exams.

Our graduates are change agents, clinicians, and leaders in child/family and adult mental health, dedicated to recovery, integrated approaches to mental health and substance use disorders, and evidence-based practices across the lifespan.

The degree requires 63 or 66 graduate credits, including a 100-hour practicum and two or three 300-hour internships (700 or 1,000 hours total of practicum and internship experience), depending on the licensure requirements for clinical mental health and professional counselors in the states where the program is offered.

The master of science in clinical mental health counseling weekend classes are currently held in the following cities and states:

  • Manchester, New Hampshire
  • Brunswick, Maine
  • Williston, Vermont
  • Anchorage, Alaska
  • Wausau, Wisconsin
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Alumni seeking transcripts should contact the registrar at the university that offered the program at the time of their enrollment, either Southern New Hampshire University or Northern Vermont University.

Northern Vermont University’s master of science in clinical mental health counseling is a well-established program, originally developed at Trinity College (Vermont) and then held by SNHU (New Hampshire). NVU took over the administration of this program in 2019.


For more information on this and other graduate programs at Northern Vermont University, contact Graduate Programs Recruiter Edward Bassett at or 802.730.4880

Director, Advisor
Advising: Clinical Mental Health Weekend Format (M.S.)
Assistant Director, Advisor
Advising: Clinical Mental Health Weekend Format (M.S.)
M.S. Clinical Mental Health Counseling


This innovative program is offered face-to-face one weekend a month to diverse student-learning communities on location in Manchester, NH; Williston, VT; Brunswick, ME; Wausau, WI; and Anchorage, AK. The program’s mission is to prepare professional counselors to work as clinical mental health counselors, in community and private-practice settings, to promote individual and community wellness, resilience, and recovery. Our graduates are prepared to meet the needs of individuals with mental health challenges and addiction disorders.

A woman with curly hair, smiling, looking at the camera, with trees and a brick building in background.

The knowledge and relationships I’ve gained from classes, professors, peers, friends and others I’ve met through the program will help me to continually grow…

– Anna Wadlington

Apply Today.

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