Frequently Asked Questions & Answers
How far in advance of the
enrollment deadline should I submit my application?
Generally, the admission procedure
requires two full academic semesters for processing applications, credentials,
references, and the required on-campus group interview. Students are encouraged
to begin this process at least two full semesters prior to the desired starting
My GPA is less than the 2.75 or
3.0 that I need; can I still apply?
If you are pursuing the
Mental Health or College/CSP specialization, you will be required to take the
GRE or MAT exam. Then, life experiences portion of your application will be
taken into consideration alongside these scores, and you may be conditionally
accepted. If you are looking to pursue a PK-12 School counseling degree, you will
not be accepted into the school counseling specialization.
I am interested in this
program, but I am not a U.S. Citizen. Can I still apply?
will consider applications submitted by U.S. citizens and permanent residents.
Permanent residents will be required to submit a copy of their passport and
green card as a part of their application. You will need to contact the office
for International Students for more information.
Each program requires applicants to have a minimum of one
year’s experience prior to admission. What counts as experience?
You need to
have a minimum of one year experience, either paid or volunteer, with the age
group of people you ultimately wish to work with, for example, children,
adolescents or adults. Some common experiences include volunteer work with a
crisis line or Hospice, internships completed at the undergraduate level, and
working as a Therapeutic Support Staff. Faculty members in each specialization
will make the final determination as to what counts as relevant experience for
that particular program.
How will I be notified of my
acceptance into the program?
You will be notified of
your acceptance via a letter sent to your home from the Graduate Admissions
Is it possible to complete this
At this time, the entirety of
the coursework is completed at Shippensburg University or amongst our latest cohort (meeting in Harrisburg). Classes run between 4pm
and 9:15 pm, dependant upon the course that you’re signed up for. Your academic
advisor will help you create a plan of work for course completion.
What is the rule regarding transfer credits?
We will accept a maximum of 9 transfer credits with a grade of “B”
or better. Courses that will be accepted for transfer must be graduate classes,
and must have the student’s advisor’s approval. Generally, the credits should
not be more than five years old.
I need to know which of the three specializations I plan to pursue to apply for the
permitted to take up to nine credits in the program without declaring a
particular specialization. Students who need particular courses to prepare them for
licensure will also be allowed to take the courses they need with permission
from the director of the program.
What constitutes full-time status?
credits per semester are considered full time for graduate school. Anything less
than 9 credits constitutes part-time status.
if I start full-time but then need to drop to part-time. Is that okay?
Once you are
admitted to the program you will have up to 7 years to complete the course work.
Once you have declared your intention, your advisor will work with you on
scheduling your courses. You do have the ability to change the length of time it
will take you to complete the program and you will be able to change your
academic plan once admitted.
How long will it take to
complete the program?
Our mental health and PK-12
school counseling specializations are both 60-credit programs. Generally, the
completion of these programs takes approximately 3 years, full-time, including
summer course work. Our College/CSP specializations are 48 credits and usually
require 2 years of course work, including summers.
How many hours per week can I
expect to spend on my homework?
Every student and course is
different, but generally you should expect to spend 5-10 hours per week on
outside readings and assignments.
Do I have to purchase a
All students will need to
have reliable access to a sufficient computer to complete their course work. The
coursework for the department of counseling requires a heavy amount of writing
and researching online articles. Computer labs are available on Shippensburg’s
campus for student use. Every student is also allotted a printing budget.
May I transfer previous
graduate credits into my Shippensburg coursework?
University does accept transfer credits from regionally accredited institutions.
You are only allowed to transfer up to 9 credits that have been completed within
the past 5 years. The grades must have been a “B” or higher. Please talk with
your advisor for more specifics.
If I have questions about scheduling courses, where do I go for information?
Approximately three weeks before scheduling begins, a memo is emailed to all students who are currently taking classes in the counseling program. Students are admitted into classes based on the number of credits that they have completed, with a preference given to students who have more credits. Students must submit their schedules on-line at http://www.ship.edu/counsel/. Schedules are emailed directly to the department secretary for processing. If students want to take classes concurrently with a class that is a pre-requisite, they must obtain permission from their advisor and submit a Pre-Requisite Waiver Form. Any student scheduling a class after the deadline set by the Registrar’s Office will have to schedule through the Registrar’s Office and pay for their classes at the time they schedule. Non-degree students may only schedule non-clinical classes and will only be considered AFTER all active students have been scheduled. In addition, they must receive permission from the faculty member teaching the course.
I am a non-matriculated student. What do I do?
First, you'll need to submit a letter from a supervisor or former faculty member to the course instructor.Then, speak directly to the instructor teaching the class requesting permission to take the course. Only upon approval can you complete a non-matriculated student registration form through the Registrar's Office found at http://www.ship.edu/Registrar/.
Students will only be considered with the instructor's permission and if there is available room within the class. Contact the Department Secretary for more information @ 717-477-1668.
I have been away from the
academic setting for a number of years. Are there other adult learners in this
University Counseling department is proud of the diversity that exists amongst
our student body. This diversity not only exists ethnically but also includes
age and life experience. No matter where you are coming from you will be sure to
connect with students and faculty in the program.
Is financial aid
you are a full-time student, you are eligible for a graduate assistantship,
which gives you a tuition waiver and a small stipend. Students who have a
graduate assistantship are responsible for paying for textbooks and student
fees. Please note there are more students wanting GA positions than are
available. If you are scheduled for six credits, you are eligible for a Stafford
Loan through the Office
of Financial Aid. If you hold a GA, you can still apply
for a Stafford Loan and receive the money allocated through the loan to pay for
you own living expenses. Please keep in mind that applying after March 1, will
give you a decreased chance of securing a graduate assistantship. More financial
options will be discussed with you at the interview
Is there on campus housing for graduate
For more information regarding on and off campus
housing, contact the Office of the Dean of Students (717-477-1164) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What if something comes up and
I have to withdraw from a course or my entire program?
We recommend that students
remain continuously enrolled. However, we know that at times students have to
stop out of course work. Students can readily pick back up where they left off
at the beginning of new terms (fall, spring, summer). If you need to withdraw
from a course or you want to apply for a leave of absence, please contact
the Registrars Office. You will
also need to contact your academic advisor so that your plan of work can be
Other Questions You May Have
What kinds of jobs do graduates obtain and what is the placement rate of students graduating from the Dept of Counseling & College Student Personnel?
A: Job placement rate is 92% for our graduate students. The following is a list of positions and locations that recent graduates have obtained.
- Assistant Dean for Admissions, Shippensburg University
- Resident Director, St. John's University, Queens, NY
- Career Counselor, Penn State York
- Professional Advisor, Liberal Arts Undergraduate Studies, Penn State University
- Assistant Director of Student Activities, Mt St. Mary's, Emmetsburg, MD
- School Counselor, James Buchanan High School, Mercersburg, PA
- School Counselor, Washington County Schools, Hagerstown, MD
- Outpatient Counselors in Chambersburg and Carlisle, PA
- Alcohol & Drug Specialist, Lebanon Valley College, PA
- Director, Outpatient Community Service Program, Harrisburg, PA
- Counselor, Department of Communications, Arts & Sciences, Harrisburg Area Community College
- Counselor, MECCA Services, Community based substance abuse & behavioral health services, Iowa City, Iowa
- Academic Specialist, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona
Q. What is the department's retention, demographics, faculty to student ratio and number of students in the Dept of Counseling & College Student Personnel program?
A. Number of Students 2008-2009
187 students by headcount
87 fulltime equivalent students
37% take 6 credits
25% take 3 credits
In the fall 2010 enrollment includes:
51% school counseling students
16% college counseling/college student personnel students
33% clinical mental health students
Faculty and Teaching Capacity
8 faculty members teach three 3 credit courses
2 faculty members teach two three credit courses
We offer 332 class seats in the fall, 329 class seats in the spring
We have 9 fulltime faculty members with a ratio of 9.58 students to 1 faculty member
After seven years of academic work, the following percentage of students earned degrees:
Of those who registered in: 2000-2001 – 70% completed degrees in seven years
2001-2002 – 71%
2002-2003 – 76%
2003-2004 – 74%
2004-2005 – 73%
2005-2006 – 74%
2006-2007 – 74%
In 2007 a study was undertaken to determine what percentage of May and August graduates had found employment in six months. It was determined that at least 92% of those who graduated found jobs in 2007 in the field of counseling and college student personnel.
A 2010 survey of 140 alumni respondents who graduated from 1995-2009 indicated that 83.6% were employed in the counseling and college student profession, 86.4 % were employed, 2.1% were doctoral students, and 2.1% were stay at home moms. Hence, 90.6% of our alumni are either employed, continuing their educations, or are stay at home moms.
Demographic Data of Students 2010
94% from PA
.01% International students
9% Black/African American
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