Counselors are professionals that give support services and provide rehabilitation treatments to individuals in need of assistance. Their tasks vary on their specialization. For instance, school counselors deal with students’ problems and career development, while institution-based counselors deal with mental health disorders, addictions, disabilities or traumas. Counselors should distinguish the issues immediately through several sessions, so he/she could give proper help and guidance.
Since counselors have a wide range of expertise, their duties vary largely according to specialization. School counselors’ main task is to develop students’ social, personal and academic escalation. Vocational counselors or career counselors evaluate and help individual make sound career decisions based on their interests and skill set; as well as provide support for others who lost their jobs, career transition and job stress. Rehabilitation counselors help people with both emotional and physical disabilities due from birth defects, accidents, or illness, encouraging clients to promote independence and deal with their physical problems. Marriage and family counselors’ main focus is to understand the person’s problem with their environment; transform behaviors and perceptions, improve communication and acceptance within members of the family; prevent crisis or even save troubled marriages. Mental Health counselors and substance abuse behavioral disorder counselors deal with medical and traumatized patients, whether from any kind of addiction or depression.
Education and Training Requirements
The basic educational requirement of counselors varies depending on what field of expertise and which location he/she will practice. A master’s degree is essential to be a licensed counselor. Some companies provide the necessary training for newly hired counselors. Counselors must partake in workshops, personal studies, and graduate studies to retain their certificates and accreditation.
Knowledge and Skills Requirements
To become an effective counselor, one must possess a great deal of yearning to help people while being able to instigate respect and trust. They are always expected to abide by the code of ethics aligned with their license and expertise. Being emotionally and physically fit to manage an assortment of problems that needs to be addressed on a daily basis and not being stressed is necessary.
Counselors work in the closed office spaces to discuss with clients’ problems all day long. Those working in hospitals may be exposed to diseases and other illnesses. Others who prefer to work in schools may have flexible schedules, while those who work in health organizations, hospitals and private firms may be given a regular 40-hour-per week shift.
Counselors receive annual wages ranging from $29,360 to $82,330 depending on their field of expertise, location of practice and working hours. Additional income for school counselors are attained usually by adding summer jobs in or outside the school.