Admission and Financial Aid

How often are applications accepted for the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program?”
Applications are reviewed throughout the year; students are admitted during the Fall (August) and Spring (January) semesters.

What are the admissions requirements?

Medaille College has a rolling admissions policy and students are admitted for the fall and spring semesters.

Successful admissions candidates will generally have met the following selection criteria:

  • An undergraduate GPA of at least 2.75:  The Faculty Admissions Committee reviews the undergraduate record, noting the total GPA, the area of concentration, and the trend of grades. A minimum 2.75 GPA is recommended, although all applications will be reviewed. Students under 2.75 will require convincing evidence of intellectual ability, communications skills, and initiative.
  • A bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited educational institution.
  • Three applicant reference forms PDF: Recommendation forms must be professional (work related) or of an academic manner and must be both the completed recommendation document with a typed, signed recommendation form attached. The committee reviews references of applicants as they contribute to an understanding of the applicant's academic ability, leadership skills, and aptitude for graduate study. All applicants are required to have three forms submitted for review.
  • International students must have a minimum TOEFL scores of 213 (computer version) or 550 (paper version) for applicants whose native language is not English or who have not graduated from an institution at which English is the language of instruction.
  • Relevant experience in a mental health, healthcare or human services setting is preferred.
  • Interview with the Faculty Admissions Committee: Prospective students who pass the initial admissions screening will be invited to participate in an interview with members of the Faculty Admissions Committee. This may be conducted in person or online, depending upon the prospective student’s availability.

Required Documentation

  • Completed application (call our office for a print application or apply online)
  • Professional goal statement: In no more than 3 pages total, write an essay on the following:
    1. Your perception of potential success in forming effective and culturally relevant interpersonal relationships in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program
    2. Your perception of your aptitude and ability to reach the level of demands place upon you in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program
    3. Your perception of the relevance of the Clinical Mental Health Program in meeting your career goals.
      See Guidelines to responding the MHC Professional Statement Application Question PDFfor assistance in writing your statement.
  • Current resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • Official transcripts from all postsecondary schools attended
    • If any portion of a prospective student’s application or supporting documents is found to be falsified or plagiarized, the prospective student will be denied admission into Medaille College.

What if I do not meet the minimum GPA requirement?
Applicants who are concerned about meeting minimum requirements are encouraged to apply.

Where do I send my application materials?
Please submit your application materials to

Medaille College - Amherst Campus
SAGE Admissions Office
30 Wilson Road
Williamsville, NY 14221
Attn: Graduate Admissions-Amherst
Medaille College – Online Campus
SAGE Admissions Office
30 Wilson Road
Williamsville, NY 14221
Attn: Graduate Admissions-Online
Medaille College - Rochester Campus
Admissions Office
1880 South Winton Rd
Rochester, New York 14618

Are photocopies or faxes of any of the application materials acceptable?
Photocopies and faxes are acceptable only as place-holders in the initial application; original documents are required to complete your application.

Whom should I ask to fill out the recommendation forms?
References should be individuals who have directly supervised your professional or academic work and who can address your academic and professional skills and abilities. At least one recommendation form should be from a former undergraduate (or graduate) professor with whom you have studied. Other references could include work supervisors or directors or board members of organizations for which you have volunteered.

I have applied for graduate study and would like to know the status of my application?
For more information, contact the Amherst Campus at (716) 932-2568 or the Rochester campus at (585) 272-0030.

When will a decision be made on my application?
Once your application is complete, it will be submitted for review by the Faculty. It usually takes 2 - 3 weeks to receive an admission decision. Once a determination is made, you will be sent a letter indicating the admission decision.

I have questions about your program. Can I make an appointment to talk with an admissions counselor?
Yes. We recommend pre-admissions counseling appointments for all of our applicants. For the Amherst campus and Onliine campus, please contact an admissions counselor at (716) 631-1061. For the Rochester campus, please contact an admissions counselor at (585) 272-0030.

How long should a professional/personal goal statement be?

  • Completed application (call our office for a print application or apply online) 
    • Professional goal statement: In no more than 3 pages total, write an essay on the following 
      • 1) Your perception of potential success in forming effective and culturally relevant interpersonal relationship in the (Clinical) Mental Health Counseling Program 
      • 2) Your perception of your aptitude and ability to reach the level of demands place upon you in the (Clinical) Mental Health Counseling Program) 
      • 3) Your perception of the relevance of (Clinical) Mental Health Program in meeting your career goals


Can I apply to more than one program at a time?
No, you can only apply to one program at a time. If you need assistance in deciding which program is the best for you at the Amherst campus, please contact one of our Graduate Admissions Counselors at (716) 631-1061. At the Rochester campus, please contact an Admissions Counselor at (585) 272-0030.

Is a deposit required once I am admitted?
Yes, in order to hold your spot in the program, you are required to submit a $100 deposit upon acceptance into the program.

What is the deadline for applying to your program?
While the college operates on a rolling admissions policy, we recommend that you submit your application and application documentation as soon as possible as classes fill up quickly. Orientation for Spring is near the first week in January and for Fall is near last week in August. Application after Orientation will be considered for the next semester.

I am currently enrolled in a graduate program or I have attended a graduate school in the past. Will my credits transfer?
All colleges and universities reserve the right to accept or deny transfer credits according to their own policies. The program director will make a determination, as part of the admission process.

What are the start dates of your program?
The Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling program begins in the fall and spring semester.

Can I defer my admission?
Medaille College does not offer deferrals. Instead, we will withdraw your file and when you are ready to enroll, you will need to contact the School of Adult and Graduate Education at the Amherst campus at (716) 631-1061 or contact the Admissions Office at the Rochester campus at (585) 272-0030 requesting to have your file reactivated. At that time you need to pay your deposit (if you have not already) and we will move you towards registration. It is recommended that you begin this process 3 months prior to the date you wish to start.

Will I be considered a full-time student?
Yes, every student in the MHC program is considered as a full-time student if they are following the (Clinical) Mental Health Program full time plan.


The (Clinical) Mental Health Program

What is the typical work load for a full-time graduate student?
The work load varies from course to course and student to student. Students can expect to spend on average 10-12 hours per week studying and completing independent work. Students on internship should plan to spend 16 hours per week at the internship site.

What do I do if I have a disability?
If you have a documented disability, register with the office of Disability Services to discuss possible accommodations. They can be reached at (716) 880-2000, ext. 2391. It is your responsibility to initiate contact with them as well as with your professors. As a college, we are committed to providing reasonable accommodations to student with disabilities.


The Mental Health Counseling Field

What is a Mental Health Counselor?
The American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) defines mental health counseling as the provision of professional counseling services involving the application of principles of psychotherapy, human development, learning theory, group dynamics, and the etiology of mental illnesses and dysfunctional behavior to individuals, couples, families, and groups for the purposes of treating psychopathology and promoting optimal mental health. Mental Health Counseling is a distinct profession with national standards for education and clinical practice. The American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) is the primary organization representing Mental Health Counselors. A licensed Mental Health Counselor has met of exceeded the following professional standards: a master's degree; completed a minimum of two years post-master's clinical work (3000 hours) under the supervision of a licensed/certified counselor (or other licensed mental health professional); and, passed a state or national licensure examination.

What can you do with your master's in mental health counseling?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has put together information about the occupational outlook for mental health counselors.

Job Outlook (

  • Employment of mental health counselors and marriage and family therapists is expected to grow by 37 percent from 2010 to 2020, much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment of mental health counselors is expected to grow by 36 percent from 2010 to 2020, much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment of marriage and family therapists is expected to grow by 41 percent over the same period, much faster than the average for all occupations.
  • Insurance companies increasingly provide for reimbursement of counselors and marriage and family therapists as a less costly alternative to psychiatrists and psychologists. People seeking mental health treatment are more likely to see a mental health counselor or a marriage and family therapist over other providers.
  • Furthermore, more people are expected to seek treatment for problems with mental and emotional problems than in earlier decades. As the population grows, the number of individuals entering therapy is expected to increase as well. This trend will cause a continued demand for counselors in mental health centers, hospitals, and colleges.
  • From 2010 to 2020, employment growth of mental health counselors in industries employing the most mental health counselors is expected to be as follows:
    Individual and family services 50%
    Residential mental health and substance abuse facilities 44%
    Outpatient mental health and substance abuse centers 34%
    Hospitals; state, local, and private 17%
    State and local government, excluding education and hospitals 12%


Where do Mental Health Counselors work?

  • County mental health clinics
  • Drug and alcohol programs
  • Hospitals
  • Psychiatric centers
  • College and University counseling centers Pastoral counseling centers
  • Crisis services
  • Hospice and Palliative care services
  • Nursing homes
  • Primary and Secondary Education
  • Non-for profit agencies
  • Research institutes

What do Mental Health Counselors do?

O*Net states: Mental Health Counselors practice with emphasis on prevention. Work with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health. May help individuals deal with issues associated with addictions and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and aging.

What is the difference between a Mental Health Counselor and a Social Worker or Psychologist?
Mental Health Counselors- along with Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Social Workers, and Psychiatric Nurses- are one of the five CORE mental health providers recognized by the National Institute of Health (NIH). In general, psychologists are all doctoral level practioners with a Ph.D./Ed.D./Psy.D. in Clinical or Counseling Psychology. Psychologists receive extensive training in psychotherapy, assessment and research. Social Workers are mostly a masters level profession and they receive broad training in a variety of social services roles, including counseling, but also case management, social welfare and others. Mental Health Counselors, like Social Workers are primarily a master's level profession. Unlike the above mental health professions, Mental Health Counselors are primarily trained to practice counseling and psychotherapy (though MHC's will also receive training in testing and assessment). Naturally, all three of these mental health professions provide many of the same services, often resulting in public confusion regarding respective roles. Because professional counselors and social workers are licensed in almost every state, this blurring of professional boundaries is likely to continue. Counselors and Social Workers may also earn doctorate degrees, though most professionals in these two professions have master's degrees.

Take the next step

Why Medaille College?

  • Convenient class times for working adults
  • Small classes with personalized attention
  • Collaborative learning environment
  • Degree programs taught by faculty working in the field
  • Fully online programs for even more flexibility

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