In April I finished my application for the Doctor of Behavioral Health program at Arizona State. It is an exciting new program that does not have a license to go along with it as of yet, but they take masters level counselors that already have licenses. Which I do have. I hope to get a second license though, the LPC (licensed professional counselor), while I am attending. I tried in 2006 and 2007 to get that license, but first in February, the board lost my application and didn't bother to contact me after I had called them several times and then they lost the money order in September . By the time they had found it I had cancelled the money order and they required me to submit a whole new application and money order.... just in time for the rules to change! I was hanging in there, hopeful that my application would be reviewed before the rules had changed January 1. I was found deficient. Bummer! I had much more to say about it at the time.
I had spent 60K for a masters program that did not meet the qualifications the board wanted and the school did not give me enough guidance to stay a little longer and get the classes finished that I needed then allow me to graduate. While I may not be overly interested in college pedigree's I will say a state school will at least give you decent guidance!
Long story short I was not able to afford a retainer for an administrative law attorney to help me get the license....I was missing psych testing, helping relationship, multicultural counseling (they made me take that over) career counseling, and the chemical dependency class (I have worked in chemical dependency for 2 years by this time) and 100 hours of pre-practicum supervision ( I had 104 hours of supervision). There was no option to test out. I was deficient. Case Closed. Not knowing what else to do, I took out some private loans to pay for classes. I took the majority of those classes, but ran out of money and steam. I was tired of dealing with Sallie Mae to get a loan. I had the credit rating but they made it nearly impossible to get a check to the school on time and twice I had to get loans from family and friends to give the school a deposit even though they had the paperwork showing I had applied for a loan and Sallie Mae had approved it and it was in process.
So this will help me to get that stinking license or if I wanted to take the necessary courses to get a psychologists license in the state of Arizona. Problem is I am not sure of a psychologist program that is not APA approved. I feel like I may be tempting fate, so while I may go that route and get the psychologist classes and extra supervision. I am going to bloody well make sure I have that LPC under my belt first.
I applied for the regular DBH program. And nearly 3 months later they contacted me for an interview. School starts in August! I am excited. It's a cheap doctoral program, I can work and go to classes without too much of a change in my routine. It is a professional program which I prefer. I love school, I want to eventually teach, but I want to get out there with a real license - I have a substance abuse license that keeps me employed but it will not get me into the Health Service Corps, serve my 5 years and have my loans paid for me! Every last red cent will be paid off in 6 years. So I can focus on my life without feeling like a beggar when I call the loan servicing center and keep asking for another postponement of payment because my job at a non profit can't pay me enough to pay for me to live and be able to pay back this enormous debt I owe.
I really find that the price of education is inflated when compared to what people earn. I know I am not the only student or alum that has complained about this. I also know I am not going to be the last.
If you are interested to see if you qualify for the health service corps check out their website: http://nhsc.hrsa.gov/loanrepayment/