Professional Counseling


The Faculty and Administration of the College of Education and Health Professions, in response to the challenging year that we have all had, are waiving the GRE requirement for Graduate admissions for the year (Summer, Fall and Spring 2021-22). We recognize that people may still have difficulty finding the resources and locations to take the GRE and wanted to respond to these challenges.

Welcome to the home page for the Master of Science Degree Program in Professional Counseling!


Matriculation through the M.S. Professional Counseling program provides graduate level training for students interested in preparing for a career in professional counseling in a variety of educational and community settings. The Professional Counseling faculty are committed to facilitating students' achievement of their career goals, and our students find work in K-12 schools, college counseling and career counseling centers, non-profit community mental health agencies, hospitals, and private practice settings. Our vision is to prepare competent practitioners who advocate for their profession and act as agents of personal, family, group, community, and social development. 

The M.S. programs in Professional School Counseling and Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of Houston-Victoria are accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). CACREP was formed in 1981 in cooperation with the American Counseling Association (ACA) to promote the advancement of quality in counselor education programs and grants accredited status to graduate-level programs in the professional counseling field. Matriculation through a CACREP accredited program ensures students will receive quality instruction, clinical experience, and the ability to form a distinct professional identity as a counselor.   In addition, students graduating from a CACREP-accredited program qualify to take the National Certified Counselor Exam, used by most states for LPC licensure.  For students pursuing a doctoral degree, graduation from a CACREP accredited program will meet application preferences in doctoral programs in counselor education.

  • Students who complete the Clinical Mental Health Counseling track meet the educational requirements to become Licensed Professional Counselors (LPCs) in Texas.
  • Students who complete the Professional School Counseling track meet the educational requirements for the Professional School Counselor Certificate (K-12) in Texas. School Counseling track students also meet requirements to apply for the Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC ) credential in Texas prior to August 1, 2017.

Program Admission Policies and Procedures

The Professional Counseling Program within the College of Education and Health Professions follows specific admission procedures for the Master of Science degrees in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with specialty concentrations in Professional School Counseling and/or Clinical Mental Health Counseling. The GRE is not required. Admissions requirements are based on an evaluation by the program's admission committee of the following information:

1. Application: Completed on-line application for graduate admission. Complete online at Apply Texas.

2. Official Transcripts: Official transcripts of all non-UHV coursework and degrees conferred. Send transcripts directly to:

University of Houston Victoria
Attn: Admissions & Student Recruitment
3007 N. Ben Wilson St.
Victoria, TX 77901

Transcripts can also be emailed to

3. Criminal Background Check: Completion of a background check. The Graduate Counselor Education Criminal Background Check Form should be completed and mailed to:

Texas Department of Public Safety
Crime Records Service
P.O. Box 15999
Austin, Texas 78761

4. Statement of Purpose: The statement of purpose must be typed, double-spaced, in Times New Roman 12-pt font. The length of the statement should be 1-2 pages maximum (250-500 words) and should address the following criteria:

1. Your professional goals and the reason you are pursuing education and training in professional counseling, rather than in another mental health discipline (such as psychology, social work, or counseling psychology). Header: “Professional Goals”

a. Describe any significant life events and how they have contributed to the development of your professional goals.

2. Your major strengths and weaknesses with respect to being admitted into this program. Header: “Strengths & Weaknesses”

3. Your perspective on diversity including a) how would you contribute to and benefit from the richness of our Professional Counseling Program, and b) how would you increase inclusion of diversity in the counseling profession. Header: “Diversity”

Applicants must email their statement of purpose (in PDF format) to the School of Education at Applicants should include their full name, UHV student ID (which will be received a few days after the Apply Texas application is completed) on the statement of purpose and in the subject line of the email. Applicants should also include in the body of the email an explanation for what they are submitting so that the College of Education and Health Professions can match it with the applicant’s admissions file.

5. Recommendation Forms/Letters: Submission of (3) three different recommendation forms and corresponding letters are required. Each of the three recommendation forms must have an accompanying recommendation letter that addresses your potential for success in the profession and your ability to complete a graduate program. Each form must be completed it its’ entirety, and each letter must provide clear evidence that addresses the candidate’s potential which will enable the individual to become a counselor. Forms and their corresponding letters of recommendation should be from an academic source, preferably a professor or academic official who is familiar with your academic history and achievement. If you have been out of school for several years, recommendations may come from your employer or supervisor.

Send Counselor Recommendation Form and Letter directly to:

University of Houston Victoria
Attn: College of Education and Health Professions
3007 N. Ben Wilson St.
Victoria, TX 77901

Recommendation Forms/Letters can also be emailed to

6. Program Interview: A program interview with UHV graduate faculty in professional counseling. The purpose of the interview is:

(1) to assess personal qualities useful for graduate and eventual professional work as a counselor; (2) to clarify questions that the committee may have about applicant’s admissions materials; (3) determine whether the applicant’s professional goals are in alignment with the objectives of the program; and (4) to share more information about the program with applicants.

If application materials are deemed satisfactory, applicants will be invited to interview with the admissions interview committee.

All applications must be complete to be considered for admission. All students must gain entry to the Professional Counseling program, School Counseling and/or Clinical Mental Health Counseling, through the admission procedures listed above. Graduate admission to UHV does not ensure students will be admitted to the Professional Counseling Program.

Program Application and Interview Schedule:

  • Term of Admission: Fall
  • Application Deadline: January 31
  • Program Interviews: March
  • Registration Opens: April

Due to adherence to faculty-to-student ratios, applicants may be accepted and waitlisted for spring or summer admission. Registration timelines are set by the UHV Registrar's Office and are subject to change We encourage you to explore our web site. You may contact any of our faculty to inquire about the M.S. in Professional Counseling.

If you have questions about the COUN program and admission requirements contact Philip Garza at

If you have already applied for admission and have questions about the status of your admission materials contact Anette Phillips at

UHV Professional Counseling Faculty:

Katherine Bacon, Ph.D. COUN Associate Professor

Christine Beliard, Ph.D. COUN Associate Professor

Sneha Nayar, Ph.D. COUN Assistant Professor

Monique Rahman, M.S. COUN Assistant Professor

Abrán J. Rodríguez, Ph.D. COUN Assistant Professor

Wayne Smith, Ph.D. COUN Associate Professor