Professional counselors were excluded from a list of trained personnel qualified to provide campus mental health services.
ACA's letter, copied below, was submitted on October 15, 2015.
In a recent Opinion column titled, “Reading, writing and mental health care
,” Dr. Lieberman advised both parents and students to inquire about campus mental health services when evaluating colleges. Unfortunately, he overlooked a very active group of campus mental health service providers in his advice.
According to Dr. Lieberman, the “most common form of treatment provided by student health services is crisis counseling and psychotherapy.” However, in his list of “trained personnel” who can provide these services, he failed to mention professional counselors, who are currently providing both services on campuses nationwide. Professional counselors have a master’s or doctoral degree and are licensed in all 50 states.
Dr. Lieberman also excluded professional counselors when advising parents and students to look for specific “credentials of the director of the service,” citing instead only psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers.
Professional counselors are passionate, diverse, and committed to helping people from all walks of life and all depths of despair to survive and thrive in today's world. They deserve to be recognized as a strong profession that plays an invaluable role in our society.
David Kaplan, PhD, CAE
Chief Professional Officer, The American Counseling Association (ACA), the world’s largest association representing professional counselors in various practice settings (56,000 members strong)