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.)

  • Flexible format: Courses are delivered online through a mix of live online meetings in the evenings (particularly clinical courses) and asynchronous courses taken on your schedule. Secure required in-person internships at a location near you with guidance from our dedicated internship coordinator.
  • 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.
  • 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. We also offer courses in family counseling, psychopharmacology, and substance abuse counseling.
  • New concentrations: Three elective courses are built into the program, and you can focus them around one of three specialty areas – Trauma and Acute Care, Couples and Family Counseling, or Substance Abuse and Addiction Counseling – adding a concentration to your master’s degree.

Concentrations and Certificates

You can earn additional concentrations and credentials for more marketability.

Use your program electives toward a concentration in any of these areas:

  • Trauma-Informed Counseling
  • Neuropsychology
  • Choose from either: Risk and Resilience or Psychopharmacology
  • Family Counseling
  • Couples Counseling
  • Choose from either: Child Psychopathology or Intro to Play Therapy (this course must be taken in-person)
  • Alcoholism/Drug Addiction: Vulnerabilities, Dynamics & Problems
  • Chemical Dependence Education & Prevention
  • Neuropsychology

Earn an additional certification:

  • Students who choose to concentrate in Substance Abuse and Addiction Counseling will also complete the requirements for obtaining Credentialed Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counselor Trainee (CASAC-T) certification. The certification is for those who provide direct clinical care services and substance use disorder counseling.

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.

This program is registered with the New York State Department of Education and meets the education requirements for the New York state Licensed Mental Health Counselor credential. Students who want to become licensed in other states will need to research educational requirements specific to the state(s) of interest.

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 (in-person program)

Application Requirements

Now taking applications for a fall 2024 start.

This new program is now taking applications for the fall 2024 semester. Space will be limited so apply by May 15, 2024, for a chance to secure your spot.

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

Your Future Career with a Master’s in Mental Health Counseling and Community Psychology

Graduates of Russell 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.


As a counseling psychology master’s candidate, you will work therapeutically with clients in person under the supervision of licensed, registered professionals. Students will be guided through the process of finding an internship site near them by our dedicated internship coordinator.


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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