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Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Counseling

Program

The Drexel Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Counseling (BHC) prepares students for careers in mental health and addictions treatment. We offer a competency-based curriculum that addresses the growing need for skilled, direct service providers. BHC graduates are effective and caring professionals who contribute to the healing and well-being of people in recovery, families, and communities.

Our mission is rooted in the core values of service, compassion, initiative, respect, integrity, competence, and intellectual curiosity. The four-year program includes an optional six-month co-op, described in the curriculum section, and is designed for the full-time undergraduate student.

The College of Nursing and Health Professions is located at Drexel University's Center City Health Sciences campus, home to the Clinical Learning Resource Center. This center features a state-of-the-art standardized patient lab which facilitates student acquisition of counseling skills through structured interactions with actors simulating people in need of mental health or addictions treatment.

What you’ll learn

The focus of student learning in this major is on how to do a broad range of evidence-based practices associated with individual and group counseling, person-centered assessment and treatment planning, psychiatric rehabilitation, recovery-oriented treatment of substance-use disorders, child and family-focused interventions and other essential clinical skills in demand by behavioral health care employers.

Students select courses that reflect individual interests and that meet a variety of pre-professional development needs. High achieving students earn Certificates of Advanced Study that signal specialized knowledge and skill in specific areas of behavioral health counseling.

This unique major offers opportunities for on-the-job learning experiences through selected co-op placements or community service arrangements. Co-op students in the Behavioral Health Counseling major have enjoyed work experiences in a variety of behavioral health settings such as psycho-social rehabilitation centers, addictions treatment clinics, inpatient and partial hospitalization settings, children’s treatment services and related facilities.

What makes the Drexel Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Counseling program unique?

  • Our faculty members are known for their research and clinical practice experience in the Greater Philadelphia region.
  • Skills-based co-operative employment experiences enhance the program with real-world knowledge application.
  • You are part of the Drexel College of Nursing and Health Professions with access to stimulating learning environments and interdisciplinary health care scenarios.
  • Our advanced, skills-based curriculum and innovative hands-on training far exceeds that found at most other undergraduate colleges and universities.  

Career Opportunities

Students confidently enter the workforce immediately upon graduation or go on to graduate school, in areas such as social work, counseling, or psychology, knowing that the quality of their education is well-recognized by leading universities throughout the United States.

Graduates easily find employment in behavioral health settings because they are widely acknowledged by the region's employers as being among the best prepared job applicants. This is particularly noteworthy given the increased employer demand for well-trained behavioral health care professionals.  Graduates typically find immediate employment in areas such as:

  • Psychiatric rehabilitation
  • Family and child support services
  • Addictions counseling
  • Case management and services coordination
  • Individual and group counseling
  • Forensic mental health services
  • Crisis intervention

Starting salaries with a bachelor's degree range from $34,000 to $45,000 per year. 

The behavioral healthcare field is tremendously diverse and encompasses far more career opportunities than listed. Career choices exist at all levels of service—from direct care to administration and policy-making. Students will find tremendous benefit both in the employment listings and outreach offered by Drexel's Steinbright Career Development Center and in the diverse professional career experience our faculty brings to our students.

 

Admissions

For Entering Freshmen

To review admission prerequisites, visit the Admission Prerequisites page. 

To find admissions deadlines, apply online, check out financial aid information, and find the current schedule for open houses, visit the Undergraduate Admissions site.

For Transferring Students

Our transfer policies are specifically designed to accommodate students applying from other colleges. Transfer students may enter the program at any point and transfer a maximum of 90 semester credits (135 quarter credits). The courses and credit values show how many general education credits can be transferred in at the discretion of the program. (Please note: This program is offered in quarter credits, not semester credits. One semester credit is equal to 1.5 quarter credits; therefore, a bachelor's degree worth 120 semester credits is equal to 180 quarter credits.)

To review transfer instructions, visit the Transfer Instructions page.

For International Students

To review transfer instructions, visit the International Instructions page.

Tuition and Fee Rates
Please visit the Tuition and Fee Rates page on Drexel Central

COMPLIANCE

The College of Nursing and Health Professions has a compliance process that may be required for every student. Some of these steps may take significant time to complete. Please plan accordingly.

Visit the Compliance pages for more information.

Curriculum

Behavioral Health Counseling Co-op

Drexel University has long been known for its co-operative education programs, through which students mix periods of full-time, career-related employment with their studies. Co-op employment is a part of the Behavioral Health Counseling curriculum.

Co-operative employment experiences are directed toward activities that will expose students to the various work environments of behavioral health professionals. These work settings provide students with the opportunity to observe mental health and addictions professionals at work, while assessing their own potential and individualized interests in undertaking careers in behavioral health. In the past year Co-op students in the Behavioral Health Counseling major have been selected to work at a psycho-social rehabilitation center, a methadone clinic, and a psychiatric inpatient unit.

The Drexel co-op is paid and unpaid employment selected from a variety of clinical settings that match the interests, abilities, and aptitudes of the student.

For more information about the Drexel Co-op visit the Steinbright Career Development page at http://www.drexel.edu/scdc/

Accreditation

MSA: Accreditation by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools

Program Level Outcomes

At Drexel University we believe that a well-formulated set of Program Level Outcomes [PLO] that support and are consistent with the institutional mission and goals are the building blocks of an effective assessment program. 

Click here to view the College of Nursing and Health Professions department of Behavioral Health Counseling Program Level Outcomes.

Career Opportunities

Students confidently enter the workforce immediately upon graduation or go on to graduate school, in areas such as social work, counseling, or psychology, knowing that the quality of their education is well-recognized by leading universities throughout the United States.

Graduates easily find employment in behavioral health settings because they are widely acknowledged by the region's employers as being among the best prepared job applicants. This is particularly noteworthy given the increased employer demand for well-trained behavioral health care professionals.  Graduates typically find immediate employment in areas such as:

  • Psychiatric rehabilitation
  • Family and child support services
  • Addictions counseling
  • Case management and services coordination
  • Individual and group counseling
  • Forensic mental health services
  • Crisis intervention
Starting salaries with a bachelor's degree range from $34,000 to $45,000 per year. 

The behavioral healthcare field is tremendously diverse and encompasses far more career opportunities than listed. Career choices exist at all levels of service—from direct care to administration and policy-making. Students will find tremendous benefit both in the employment listings and outreach offered by Drexel's Steinbright Career Development Center and in the diverse professional career experience our faculty brings to our students. 

News & Events

03/15/16

The College of Nursing and Health Professions (CNHP) was well-represented in Drexel Magazine’s 40 Under 40 for 2016. This roundup is the publication’s annual compendium of Drexel’s most innovative, impressive and inspiring young alumni.

Representing CNHP are featured alumni, Zach Stone, BS Behavioral Health Counsing ’11 and Joseph Anton, MS Nursing ’09.

Stone is the co-founder and chief strategy officer at Red Kite Project. He credits Drexel with teaching him methods for behavioral and organizational change that have helped his clients’ overcome obstacles and helped Stone’s business to edge out competitors.

Anton is the vice president of clinical and support services at Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals. Anton credits Drexel with providing him a great foundation of both leadership theory and practical experience.

Congratulations to our #AwesomeAlumni! Click here to read the full article.

02/15/16

Vera Lee Christy, RN (RN ’80, BSN ‘88), a nurse at Waverly Heights Retirement Community in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, was inducted into the International Association of HealthCare Professionals and will be included in The Leading Physicians of the World publication.

Oliver Morgan, PhD (MFT ‘81), professor of counseling and human services at the University of Scranton, was awarded a grant to study "It's All Connected: Integrating the Many Layers of Addiction." 

02/15/16

In less than two months, another round of co-operative education students will embark on their six- month-long professional journeys focused on sampling careers in the health professions and nursing. For some, this will be their first go-round. For others, this could be another step toward landing a job post-graduation.

Let’s meet some of the students who will enter the workforce this spring:

Rachel Bernhardt ‘17

A junior focused on Physical Therapy in the Health Sciences program, Rachel will complete her co-op at Jefferson University Hospital as a Physical Therapy Aide. Her position will focus on assisting therapists with patients, room set-up, vital signs, exercises and clean-ups.

“I knew for a fact I wanted to work in a hospital setting and Jefferson is one of the top-ranked hospitals for rehabilitation. The job also offers lots of patient contact hours which I could not be more excited about!”

Molly Girard ‘17

A junior in the Behavioral Health Counseling program, Molly will complete her co-op at the Belmont Center for Comprehensive Treatment as a Rehabilitation Services Intern. Her position includes assisting psychotherapists with group therapy serving children, adolescents, adults and eating disorder patients in the Rehabilitative Services Department.

“I became interested in Belmont because of the opportunity to work directly with patients in group therapy sessions. I hope to learn more about counseling diverse populations and clients with a variety of different diagnoses.”

Abby Warner ‘17

A junior completing her third and final co-op in the 5-year Nursing program, Abby will head to Penn Presbyterian Medical Center to work in the Trauma Surgical Intensive Care Unit. She will be part of a team that cares for patients who have sustained complex trauma related injuries, neurovascular procedures and neuro-trauma, thoracic, vascular and general surgical procedures requiring care beyond the capabilities of a general surgical floor.

“This job piqued my interest as an opportunity to work in critical care, specifically with trauma and surgical patients. The patient population requires complex, multi-system management, and I think prioritization will be a key skill for me to improve on. I will definitely learn how to work efficiently in emergency circumstances, and I hope to strengthen my assessment skills with the help of the nurses on my unit.”

Madison Young ‘17

A junior in the Health Services Administration program, Madison heads to the University of Pennsylvania to work as an Immunization and Insurance Compliance Clerk. In her role Madison will assist students with understanding their insurance policies and immunization records, and will manage reports and data for administrator’s in the Student Health Insurance Department.

“What interested me about this position was the opportunity to work with students, health professionals, doctors and nurses. I hope to learn about the business side of healthcare, and gain a better idea of what kind of career I’d like to pursue post-graduation.”

Emily Monnoleto ‘17

A junior in the Nutrition and Foods program, Emily heads to the Abramson Cancer Center at the Hospital at the University of Pennsylvania to work as a Clinical Nutrition Quality Improvement Assistant. Emily will join a project focused on improving nutrition for patients being treated with chemotherapy by interviewing specific groups using a validated screening tool to identify malnutrition.

“I’m very interested in clinical nutrition and oncology, and hope to widen my knowledge of both during my co-op. I’m looking forward to gaining more experience by working with patients in a research project that could make an impact on the cancer center.” 
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