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The School of Behavioral Health & Social Sciences

Welcome to the Pillar College School of Behavioral Health and Social Sciences. Rooted in the Christian worldview, our psychology and counseling programs are designed to empower and equip students with the education and training needed to facilitate the uplift, emotional wellbeing, and psychological health of individuals from all levels of society. Our experiential learning model builds a solid foundation of knowledge, theories, strategies, and skillsets necessary for students to counsel in various contexts. Our goal is to set students up for success in the workforce and to build upon this foundation with further education and training to pursue their desired area of specialization within the many careers available within the behavioral health and social sciences. Our hope is to support and partner with our students as they continue their journey to be effective helpers for individuals and families in their communities through the means of counseling, mentorship, and coaching.

Maxine Bradshaw, B.A., MBA, M.Ed., Ph.D.

Dean, School of Behavioral Health and Social Sciences and Professor of Psychology

Email: [email protected]

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BA Psychology & Counseling

Bachelor of the Arts Degree

The Psychology and Counseling degree is designed to provide students with a foundation for crisis counseling, spiritual formation, coaching, or mentoring ministry. Students may choose to build on this foundation with further education and/or training specific to an area specialization, such as the pursuit of a Master’s or Doctoral degree required to attain state licensure as a professional counselor. Upon successful completion of this program, students will be prepared to serve in a context that does not require licensure.

Students participate in innovative programs and experiences (internships, mentorship, and enrichment training) which allow them to become State Certified as Mental Health First Aid Assessors and Behavioral Assistants.

Unique Benefits & Features:

  • This degree is also offered through Pillar College’s LEAD (Life Enhancing Accelerated Degree) program. Through LEAD, the Psychology and Counseling degree can be completed in as little as 4 Semesters. .
  • Eligibility for membership in the Psychology and Counseling Club. Students engage in therapeutic workshops to practice Psychological and Counseling techniques and learn to facilitate therapeutic groups. .
  • Membership in Pillar College Chapter of Psi Chi (one of the largest honor societies in the United States). Membership offers benefits of scholarships and awards, the opportunity to publish and present at conferences, networking and more. .
  • Strong collaboration. Our partners include the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Division of Injury Prevention to become certified as a Mental Health First Aider, ADAPT, Integrity House, the FBI, DEA, HBO Life of Crime Series, to name a few. .
  • Collaborations with faculty to present at professional organizations such as the American Psychological Association (APA) and the American Counseling Association (ACA). .
  • Collaborate with faculty to participate in research and professional publications. .
  • Solid internships program through collaborations with licensed professionals. .

Click Here To Learn About Psi Chi

Key elements of the program include: developing a biblical and theological framework for counseling with special emphasis on the role of the Holy Spirit as the true Counselor who empowers those who would be effective helpers; acquiring the knowledge and theories that are foundational to counseling and psychology; growing in relationship with God and others; cultivating strategies and skill-sets necessary to counseling in a variety of contexts; and, exposure to various therapeutic approaches to counseling with a special emphasis on Cognitive and Family Systems theories and techniques. 

A Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology & Counseling provides the foundation for: 

  • Careers in Counseling and/or Psychology and Crisis Counseling 
  • Certification as a Behavioral Assistant or Technician 
  • Spiritual Formation 
  • Coaching 
  • Mentoring ministry 
  • Master’s or Doctoral degrees that permit students to attain state-licensure as a professional counselor
     

The B.A. in Psychology & Counseling degree can lead to numerous careers including but not limited to: 

  • Counseling 
  • Rehabilitation 
  • College Teaching 
  • Clinical Practice 
  • Behavioral Management 
  • Behavioral Research 
  • Psychological Testing 
  • Psychiatric Social Work 
  • Personnel Training 
  • Human Resource Management 

Concentration Options

There are three concentrations from which to choose:

Marriage & Family

This concentration will emphasize counseling within the context of family systems and will assist students who wish to prepare to do effective ministry with couples and families. It is geared towards individuals who wish to specialize in marriage and family therapy. This concentration prepares a pathway for students to continue in the Pillar College MAC program which specializes in Marriage and Family counseling, and any other graduate program with any mental health specialty.

Required Courses:

  1. COUN 306 Marriage & Family Counseling
  2. COUN 307 Multicultural Counseling
  3. PSYC 406 Conflict Theory/Christian Peacemaking
  4. PSYC 403 Human Sexuality
Crisis Counseling

This concentration is an integration of faith and psychology. It provides theoretical models and strategies that are necessary to effect change in crisis situations and will enable individuals to move forward in more functional ways. Crisis Counseling is for those who wish to become a professional Christian Counselor, Trauma and Crisis Advocate, Chaplain, or Emergency Volunteer, among other options.

Required Courses:

  1. PSYC 406 Conflict Theory/Christian Peace
  2. COUN 305 Crisis Counseling
  3. COUN 407 Creative Counseling Methods
  4. COUN 310 Life Coaching Skills
Professional Coaching

In today’s fast-paced, always-on world, there is a real demand for accredited, certified Life Coaches to help people manage the many pressures of the modern world. The Pillar College concentration in Life Coaching will equip students with the proper techniques and tools utilized by professionals in this dynamic field. Students will equip students for Accreditation with the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and allow them to begin a rewarding career as a Certified Life Coach.

Required Courses:

  1. Introduction to Coaching
  2. Coaching in Ministry
  3. Life and Business Coaching
  4. Coaching Practicum

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Counseling Master of Arts Degree

Deepen your understanding of human behavior and enhance your career

Impact the World and the Lives of others with A Master’s Degree in Counseling. Complete in as little as 5 Semesters.

The MA in Counseling Program (MAC Program) is designed to provide students with a 60-credit cohort-based, comprehensive academic and experiential education. Training is provided in the field of counseling and the specialty area of marriage, couple, and family counseling from a Christian worldview. Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge of the counseling profession, counselors’ personal dispositions, clinical expertise, and cultural proficiency for preparation to provide mental and emotional wellness services to clients/families from culturally diverse backgrounds. The MA in Counseling Program meets the requirements of the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) and the New Jersey Licensure as a Licensed Associate Counselor (LAC) and Licensed Professor Counselor (LPC).

MAC Licensure and Graduation Requirements

*Core Curriculum Courses

  • COUN 545: Introduction to Addiction & Recovery Counseling
  • COUN 550 Counseling Skills
  • COUN 580 Orientation to Professional Counseling
  • COUN 590 Group Process and Practice
  • COUN 645: Pharmacology & Physiology of Drugs and Alcohol

*Marriage, Couple & Family Courses

  • COUN 620 Marriage and Family Counseling I
  • COUN 625 Marriage and Family Counseling II

The MA in Counseling Program is designed to prepare counseling graduates for success in careers in:

  • Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling .
  • Clinical Mental Health Agencies (public and private settings) .
  • Psychiatric Hospital Units/Treatment and Case Management .
  • Private Practice .
  • Educational Institutions – including academic advising, college counseling services, student affairs/campus life and career counseling centers .
  • Churches and Parachurch Ministries, Church Counseling Ministries and Services .
  • Pursue a Doctoral degree in Counseling.

MAC Licensure and Graduation Requirements