We’ll put you on the path to become an LMHC

Our master’s in Mental Health Counseling and Community Psychology is approved by the New York State Education Department’s Office of the Professions. Graduates are eligible to take the exam required to practice as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in New York state.

(We offer a Community Psychology master’s for those not seeking licensure as a LMHC.)

You can earn additional credentials for more marketability:

  • Add a certificate in Forensic Mental Health. This opportunity is designed for students who want to work with individuals with both mental health needs and criminal justice involvement.
  • Apply for the Credentialed Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counselor in Training (CASAC-T) certification, administered by the New York State Office of Substance Abuse Services.
  • Reduced tuition: Our cost per credit is low compared to private institutions. Plus, we offer a 10%  discount for employees of organizations in the RSC Health Alliance or Businesses for a Better Sage program.
  • We are ideal for working adults: Our counseling master’s program is primarily an evening program, with some weekend and online courses. You can complete your degree in three to four years while you work full time.
  • We provide a comprehensive curriculum: You’ll take academic, clinical and research classes in the behavioral sciences and build therapeutic skills under the supervision of licensed professionals.
  • Education delivered by expert faculty: Our full-time faculty have Ph.D.s in counseling, clinical, or community psychology.
  • Diverse offerings: In addition to core courses, we offer courses in family counseling, psychopharmacology, and substance abuse counseling.
  • We combine community psychology and counseling in a way other programs don’t: You’ll learn to work directly with clients and to view mental health from a macro level.

Course Requirements

Credits and Completion

Our master’s in Mental Health Counseling and Community Psychology program is 60 credits and can be completed full time in approximately three years.  The program has been registered with New York State Education Department as meeting the educational qualifications leading to licensure as a Mental Health Counselor in New York State.

Students enrolled in the Mental Health Counseling and Community Psychology Masters Program may also elect to pursue a Certificate in Forensic Mental Health.

This master’s degree in Counseling and Community Psychology prepares students for work as Licensed Mental Health Counselors in accordance with the best practices in education and training recognized by the Master’s in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council. Graduates have a foundation in ethical practices, understand intersectionality of multiple identities and respect multicultural perspectives.

The M.A. in Counseling and Community Psychology Program is accredited by the
Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council (MPCAC) for the period of November 2020 through November 2028.

Number of applicants58
Number of acceptances54
Percent accepted93%
Number of enrollees35
Percent enrolled65%
Number of total students (part-time and full-time)84
Graduates (Aug/Dec/May)19
Number of core full-time faculty7
Faculty to student ratio1:12
Courses taught by adjunct faculty19%
Percent of graduates from 2019 to 2021 who are now Licensed Mental Health Counselors in NYS60%

M.A. in Counseling & Community Psychology 2022-2023

Easily Apply

We offer rolling admission, so apply anytime, and you can start when you are ready — fall or spring semesters.

Application Requirements

Applicants should have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 and should have completed undergraduate courses in Social Science Statistics, History and Systems of Psychology, and three additional courses in behavioral sciences.

  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • A one- to two-page essay describing your career goals
  • A resume
  • An RSC graduate school application
  • GRE scores are not required

“Students with a master’s degree in counseling walk out the door with jobs. There’s such a need for counselors that they have jobs immediately.”

Gayle Morse, Ph.D., Professor
Group of students gathered around a professor

Your Future Career with a Master’s in Counseling

Graduates of Sage’s Mental Health Counseling and Community Psychology program become Licensed Mental Health Counselors and enter private and group practices or join state and county agencies, health care systems, universities, school districts, human service agencies and more.

Learning Experience

Hands-on experiences will build your understanding of psychological research and counseling practice and offer opportunities for professional development.


As a counseling psychology master’s candidate, you will work therapeutically with clients under the supervision of licensed, registered professionals. Recent settings include the Capital District Psychiatric Center, Albany Medical Center Behavioral Pediatrics and the Mid Hudson Forensic Psychiatric Center.


You will also conduct research and may be eligible for research funding from Russell Sage College’s Broughton Graduate Fellowship or Paul Search Research Award in Community Psychology, or from the American Psychological Association.

Professional Networking

Professional organizations and conferences are another opportunity to learn. Our students have presented research at the American Psychological Association’s national and regional conferences and Russell Sage College’s Graduate Research symposium.

Spotlights Pattern
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Associate Professor of Psychology, Chair and Graduate Program Director

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