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Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA)

Fall - March 10
Fall Admission Only

The Department of Psychology offers a 60 credit (2 1/2 year) program leading to the Master of Arts (MA) in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and is designed to fulfill the educational needs of those wishing to be licensed as Mental Health Counselors. The Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is registered with New York State as a licensure qualifying program and is accredited by the Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council (MPCAC) for the period of August, 2016 through August, 2026.

Mental health counseling is a field within the practice of professional counseling. Mental health counselors work with individuals, families, and groups to address and treat emotional and mental disorders and to promote mental health. The settings in which mental health counselors work are diverse and include the following: hospitals, private and public outpatient facilities, schools, agencies, employee assistance, industrial and organizational settings, advocacy, substance abuse treatment facilities, criminal justice, and private practice.

The core faculty who teach and supervise student progress are concerned about the vicissitudes, the challenges, and the difficulties inherent in the human condition; our curriculum reflects these concerns as well as fulfills New York State requirements for licensure as a mental health counselor.

We continually address cultural and social problems as they emerge and change in our diverse and challenging world. We teach our students to carry out their professional responsibilities in ways that promote social justice. We intend to prepare students to work with children, adolescents, adults, families, groups, and organizations using their highly developed cognitive and affective skills. We believe that counseling professionals ought to have a lifelong learning commitment that will support their continual inquiry into new ways of helping people.

Contact Information

Dr. Frances Melendez

Program Coordinator

Dr. Frances Melendez
Building 4S Room 106
Email Dr. Frances Melendez

Applicants to the program are expected to have a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from an accredited institution with a 3.0 undergraduate average, a minimum of 15-19 undergraduate credits in the following areas of psychology:

  • General or Introductory Psychology
  • Child or Adolescent or Developmental Psychology
  • Psychopathology or Abnormal Psychology
  • Personality Theory
  • Methods in Psychology or Experimental Psychology
  • Statistics for the Social Sciences.

All CUNY licensed health professions programs will consider students to be eligible for admission consistent with the regulations of the New York State Education Department (NYSED) that make professional licensure available not only to U.S. citizens but to non-citizens so long as they are “not unlawfully present in the United States,” including those with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and those who are permanently residing in the United States under color of law (PRUCOL).

Graduate Application:


Request official transcripts from all US institutions attended to be sent to CAS. International Transcripts (For those who studied outside of the U.S.) will need to be evaluated by World Education Services (WES) or  Education Credential Evaluators (ECE).  The evaluation must be sent directly to CAS.  There's a link in the Academic History section of the application to order your official evaluation. 

Application Fee:

Submit a $75.00 non-refundable application fee.  The fee must be paid online via the CAS application system.  Applicants who are veterans of the United States Military Service, currently on Active Duty or members of the National Guard or Reserves, may obtain an application fee waiver.  Veteran applicants must submit proof of their Veteran/Military status (ie., DD-214, Current Military ID Card, or Deployment or Pre-separation orders).  Please send proof to  Once we receive your proof, we will issue a fee waiver.

Letter of Intent:

A one-to-two page letter of intent, detailing interest in the field, academic and related experience (if any) and the reason(s) for selecting this field of study.

Letters of Recommendation:

Two letters of recommendation are required.  At least one letter should come from a current or former professor.

English Proficiency Examination:  The TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE exam is required of students for whom English is a second language.

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): Minimum required score are 600 (Paper), 250 (Computer), or 100 (Internet). For additional information or to register for the exam, please visit the TOEFL website at Our institutional code is 2778.
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS): We will only accept the academic exam scores. The minimum required score is 7 (overall band).  For additional information or to register for the exam, please visit the IELTS website at
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE): Minimum required score is 68. For additional information or to register for the exam, please visit the PTE website at
  • Duolingo English Test: Minimum required score is 100. For additional information or to register for the exam, please visit the Duolingo website.

Interview and Writing Sample:

After initial review, applicants may be selected for an on-site interview and on-site writing sample