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Master of Education in School Counseling

Today, school counselors do much more than help students get into college and give advice. School systems look to them as advocates for the success of all students.

The Nicholls State University Master of Education in School Counseling program prepares students to provide a variety of counseling and guidance services in diverse educational settings.

The program emphasizes clinical training and K-12 field experiences while providing the background knowledge necessary for an integrated approach to counseling, collaboration and program development.

Graduates of the MESC program have obtained jobs in various settings and regions in the state

School counselors in PK -12 settings, including public, private, alternative, and charter schools. They have been hired in school systems throughout the region, including Lafourche, Terrebonne, St. Mary, Iberia, St. John, St. James, St. Charles, Assumption, Ascension, Jefferson and Orleans Parishes.

In addition to school counselor positions, graduates have also been hired as behavioral interventionists in schools.

Counseling positions in other agencies, such as Magnolia Services, Options for Independence, Early Steps, Clair House, Nicholls Academic Advising, Lafourche Drug Court, Louisiana Workforce, Lafourche Juvenile Justice and other social service agencies in the area.

Graduates sometimes opt to continue teaching in their school district as a master teacher, directors of curriculum, RTI director, etc.

ASK THE EXPERT

Dr. Chantrelle Varnado-Johnson, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Studies was recently interviewed for a new social work resource website, MSW Online. MSW Online is intended to provide high-quality information for students and early career professionals. Along with degree information, resources include career guidance, scholarship information, where to find internships, and other information related to getting started in social work or a closely related field. 

The Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling programs are accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) effective July, 2014.

The programs’ annual CACREP program outcome reports may be assessed at CACREP Outcomes Report for interested individuals.

The mission statement of the Masters of School Counseling Program is as follows:

The Masters of Education in School Counseling program (MESC) has as its mission the professional training of candidates interested in working as counselors in school settings.  School counseling candidates will acquire competencies to perform successfully as counselors, consultants, advocates and leaders in schools and the community.   The program prepares culturally competent, culturally sensitive and ethical counselors to work effectively in a pluralistic society. The faculty designs and delivers academic and clinical experiences to all students in ways that recognize, respect and value the diversity of students’ backgrounds, characteristics, beliefs, and abilities. The MESC program meets the standards for certification of school counselors as specified by the Louisiana State Department of Education in Louisiana, and also provides training consistent with requirements for licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Louisiana as well as other states.

Chantrelle Varnado-Johnson, LPC-S, RPT, BC-TMH, NCC

Title: Assistant Professor & Coordinator of School Counseling Program
Department: Department of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Studies
Email: chantrelle.varnado-johnson@nicholls.edu
Office Phone: 985-448-4349
Office Location: 255 College of Education and Behavioral Sciences Building
 
 

To be admitted to the Master of Education in School Counseling program at Nicholls, applicants should possess and submit the following:

  1. A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  2. A minimum GPA of 2.50 on the final 60 hours of undergraduate coursework attempted.
  3. An applicant with significant and meaningful experience and a strong academic background may request that the GRE be waived as a requirement for admission.  The request for the waivers shall be submitted in writing to the Graduate Coordinator and the Dean of the College of Education and clearly state the basis for the waiver. A current resume shall accompany the request. A final decision will be made by the Graduate Program Committee.  Applicants who are unable to meet this requirement should submit acceptable score on the GRE.  A minimum score of 335 is required on the formula: GPA on last 60 undergraduate hours times 20, plus the GRE General Test score. Acceptable scores must be submitted within the first semester of entering a Master’s program.
  4. Submit completed program application. Submit three letters of recommendation.  Completion of a Criminal Background Check with “Certified Backgrounds”.

To begin the application process to the Nicholls Graduate School, individuals must submit the following at least one month prior to the semester of admission:

  • Graduate Studies application form (apply electronically).
  • Application fee of $20 (or $30 for international students), in the form of a check or money order payable to Nicholls State University.

Additionally, the following must be submitted to complete the application package:

  1. Official transcripts from all higher education institutions attended, must be sent directly from those institutions.
    Download record request form.
  2. Applicants may be eligible for a GRE waiver, refer to Admission Requirements for information regarding this.  Students who are not eligible for a waiver must have scores sent from the Educational Testing Service to Nicholls State University.  Information on how to register for the GRE may be accessed at this website:  GRE website.
  3. Results of a background check with Certified Backgrounds. (download form).
  4. Applicants will also be required to complete an interview with faculty representatives of the school counseling program.
  5. Applicants must be admitted to the Graduate School prior to applying to the Master of Education in School Counseling program.

These completed forms should be mailed to:

Chantrelle Varnado-Johnson, LPC-S, RPT, NCC
Department of Psychology, Counseling and Family Studies
P.O. Box 2075
Thibodaux, LA 70310

  • Students are encouraged to consider applying for graduate assistantships that are available for students fully admitted to the program. Applications may be accessed at https://www.nicholls.edu/graduate/
  • Visit the Nicholls catalog for more information regarding admission to the Master of Education in School Counseling program.

Graduate coursework includes 60 academic hours plus nine hours of practicum/internship credit. Graduate courses required for the degree are as follows:

Foundations Core Courses
COUN 501 (3)– Introduction to School Counseling
COUN 511 (3)– Theories of Counseling and Psychotherapy
COUN 519 (3)- Advanced Lifespan Developmental Psychology
COUN 549 (3)- Professional Issues and Ethics in Counseling
Advanced Concentration Coursework
COUN 500 (3) – Basic Facilitative Skills
COUN 504 (3) – Adult & Child Psychopathology & Diagnosis
COUN 505 (3) – Analysis of the Individual
COUN 510 (3) – Theory and Procedures in Group Counseling
COUN 520 (3) – Introduction to Counseling Practicum
COUN 522 (3) – Interventions for Diverse Needs
COUN 523 (3) – School Counseling Practicum I
COUN 526 (3) –  Introduction to Marriage and Family Therapy
COUN 527 (3) – Career and Lifestyle Development
COUN 530 (3) – Counseling Strategies with Children and Adolescents
COUN 534 (3) – School Counseling Internship I
COUN 535 (3) – School Counseling Internship II
COUN 551 (3) – Applied Theories
EDFR 501 (3) – Educational Research or
PSYC 507 (3) – Statistical Analysis and Research Methods
PSYCH 523 (3) – Crisis Prevention and Intervention
COUN 595 (0) – Master’s Comprehensive Examination
 
Electives: Candidates must complete three semester hours of the following course.
COUN 502 (3) – Introduction to Mental Health Counseling
COUN 509 (3) – Clinical Sexuality for Mental Health Professionals
COUN 512 (3) – Cognitive Behavior Theory & Applications
COUN 520 (3) – Introduction to Counseling Practicum
EDLE 535 (3) – Using Inquiry and Data to Lead Change
EDAS 535 (3) – Program Evaluation
COUN 537 (3) – Substance Abuse Counseling
COUN 550 (3) – Special Topics in Counseling. May be taken multiple times if topics differ.
EDCI 512 (3) – Exceptional Children
EDCI 557 (3) – Behavioral Intervention
EDCI 558 (3) – Social & Emotional Needs of the Gifted
EDCI 513 (3) – Advanced Methods in Classroom Management
EDLE 536 (3) – Program Eval & Implementation for School Improvement
EDLE 508 (3) – Practice of School Leadership and School Improvement
EDUC *421 (3) – Current Practices and Strategies in Teaching

In addition, candidates must successfully complete a master’s comprehensive examination.

Learn specifics about degree requirements and graduate coursework

The Clinical Mental Health and School Counseling Programs conduct annual program evaluations to ensure that students are meeting the standards established by CACREP.  Annual reports are available for viewing on this page.

Program Outcomes Report 2018-2019

Program Outcomes Report 2017 – 2018

Program Outcomes Report 2016 – 2017

Program Outcomes Report 2015-2016

Program Outcomes Report 2014-2015

Program Outcomes Report 2013-2014

Program Outcomes Report 2012 – 2013

Graduate Student Program Handbook​

Program Advisors

Dr. Chantrelle Varnado-Johnson, LPC-S, RPT, BC-TMH, NCC

Title: Assistant Professor & Coordinator of School Counseling Program
Department: Department of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Studies
Email: chantrelle.varnado-johnson@nicholls.edu
Phone: 985.448.4349
Office Location: 255 College of Education and Behavioral Sciences Building

Dr. Amanda Johns, LPC-S, NCC

Title: Assistant Professor, CACREP Liaison, Practicum Coordinator
Department: Psychology, Counseling, and Family Studies
Email: amanda.johns@nicholls.edu
Phone: 985.448.4357
Office Location: 269 College of Education and Behavioral Sciences Building

Dr. Jessica Fanguy Cortez, LPC-S, NCC, NCSC

Title: Associate Professor & Coordinator of Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program
Department: Psychology, Counseling and Family Studies
Email: jessica.fanguy.cortez@nicholls.edu
Phone: 985.448.4352
Office Location: 267 College of Education and Behavioral Sciences Building