How to Become a Counselor in Wyoming - Online Counseling Programs
How to Become a Counselor in Wyoming
As in many other states, counselors in Wyoming who have obtained their licensure are known as Licensed Professional Counselors (LPCs), and those who have yet to complete the supervision portion of the licensure process are known as Provisional Professional Counselors (PPCs).
The state’s premier professional organization for LPCs is the Wyoming Counseling Association, a branch of the American Counseling Association, which was founded in 1954 as the Wyoming Personnel and Guidance Association. Its mission today is “the enhancement of human development throughout the lifespan and the promotion of the counseling profession.”
Licensure for LPCs in Wyoming is managed by the state’s Mental Health Professions Licensing Board. Licensure requirements for counselors in Wyoming, including education, supervision, examination, fees, renewal, and “licensure by reciprocity,” are examined in further detail below, along with salary information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as well as scholarships and loan repayment programs available to LPCs in the state.
Counselor Education in Wyoming
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LPC licensure in Wyoming requires the completion of a master’s or doctoral degree in counseling from a program accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) or the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE). Programs not accredited by CACREP or CORE may be acceptable if they are certified by a regional or national institution recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and meet the coursework requirements below.
Appropriate degree programs will be 60 semester hours of graduate-level coursework, with instruction in each of the following core content areas:
Human growth and development
Social and cultural diversity
Research and program evaluation
Professional orientation and ethical practice
In addition to the coursework listed above, LPC licensure in Wyoming also requires the completion of an internship, practicum, or field experience under clinical supervision. Practicum experience must equate to at least 100 hours over a 10-week academic term. Internship requirements involve the completion of 600 hours of supervised experience reflective of the work of a professional counselor. This requirement is distinct from post-graduate supervision, which is also necessary for licensure.
“Supervision” is shorthand for directed, post-graduate experience in professional counseling under supervision in a work setting. LPC licensure in Wyoming requires the completion of 3,000 hours of supervision for holders of master’s degrees, with 1,200 hours of direct client contact and 100 hours of face-to-face, individual direction from an approved supervisor.
Licensure as a professional counselor in Wyoming requires a passing score on the National Counselor Examination for Licensure and Certification, the National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam, or the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Exam.
National Counselor Examination for Licensure and Certification (NCE)
The NCE is a 200-question, multiple-choice examination administered by the National Board for Certified Counselors. It assesses knowledge, skills, and abilities in effective counseling services.
National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam (NCMHCE)
The NCMHCE tests knowledge of assessment, diagnosis, counseling, psychotherapy, administration, consultation, and supervision. It consists of 10 clinical mental health counseling cases and assesses clinical problem-solving ability by testing identification, analysis, and treatment. It is also administered by the National Board for Certified Counselors.
Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) Exam
The CRC Exam consists of 175 multiple-choice questions across 10 subjects underlying rehabilitation counseling. One portion of the exam tests knowledge regarding counseling, while the other pertains to rehabilitation and disability issues. It is administered by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification.
LPC licenses in Wyoming expire biennially on the counselor’s birthday. License renewal requires payment of the appropriate fees and the completion of continuing education.
Wyoming LPCs are required to complete 45 hours of continuing education (CE) during each two-year renewal period. One academic semester credit is equivalent to 15 hours of CE. Aside from completing courses, CE may be earned through making presentations, though for a maximum of only six hours during each period. Other activities with significant intellectual or practical content with the primary objective of increasing the participant's competence within professional counseling may also count towards CE.
The Wyoming Mental Health Professions Licensing Board has an alternative route to licensure for counselors who have already obtained their licenses in other parts of the United States. This process is called “licensure by reciprocity”. Applicants who directly meet and satisfy Wyoming licensing requirements whom are already licensed in another state, may be issues a license as a professional counselor. For any applicant who needs to complete additional supervised hours may be issues a provisional license of practice.
Description: The American Psychological Association (APA), with funding from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, offers assistance to students enrolled full time in APA-accredited doctoral programs who have a strong commitment to a career in ethnic minority behavioral health services.
Description: This award from the American Psychological Foundation is available each year to one full-time graduate student in good standing at an accredited university who has demonstrated a commitment to stigma issues.
Description: American Addiction Centers offers three scholarships providing financial assistance to full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students pursuing careers in behavioral health and addiction-related studies, including counseling.
Description: Wyoming LPCs are eligible to apply for loan repayment assistance in exchange for working in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) at a site approved by the National Health Service Corps. Funding is tied to HPSA score and is in exchange for two years of full- or half-time service.
Description: The Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students program provides funds to schools, which in turn offer scholarships to full-time, financially needy students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are studying professional counseling, amongst other health professions.