Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling
South University Richmond’s Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is designed for those interested in helping people in need. Our coursework is focused on experiential learning that can help you to become a compassionate professional counselor. Our program offers: comprehensive studies of theories and principles, dynamic applications in the field, training in effective assessment and treatment practices, a thorough understanding of the significance of research in the field and competence in ethical, legal, and professional standards
After earning an MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, graduates are eligible to sit for licensure in their state and the opportunity to become certified as a National Certified Counselor by the National Board for Certified Counselors.
South University does not guarantee third-party certification/licensure. Outside agencies control the requirements for taking and passing certification/licensing exams and are subject to change without notice to South University.
Curriculum for South University, Austin; South University, Columbia; South University, Richmond; South University, Savannah; and South University, Virginia Beach campuses only
*Students wishing to move to North Carolina will be able take additional .5 seminar courses to fulfill the State of North Carolina requirements. Students taking these additional courses must following the Coursework Taken Outside a Student's Degree Program policy found in the Academic Affairs Section of the Academic Catalog.
The objectives of the South University, Richmond Clinical Mental Health Counseling program are to recruit eligible students from all areas and provide fair and equitable admissions criteria; make available a variety of instructional models and resources to provide the student with the most effective learning arrangements and to provide appropriate learning opportunities for counseling students that will prepare them to perform their expected competencies in an ethical, legal, safe, and effective manner upon graduation; prepare counseling students to communicate effectively; instill the importance and value of continued education and involvement in appropriate professional and community affairs after graduation; and encourage the counseling students to recognize their own strengths and limitations.
- Students will demonstrate knowledge, comprehension, synthesis, and application of the major theories comprising the foundation of counseling from a historical and contemporary perspective.
- Students will demonstrate an awareness and comprehension of the normal and abnormal mechanisms of change within individuals across the lifespan.
- Graduates will demonstrate an ability to properly identify, assess, conceptualize, diagnose, and treat mental disorders in the context of the accepted diagnostic nomenclature.
- Students will gain an understanding and appreciation of the contributions of quantitative and qualitative research and the synergy among the theoretical, clinical and scientific components of the field.
- Students will explore and understand the impact of their personal view as it relates to their world view and the multidimensional nature of cultural influences as a Counselor Educator.
- Students will develop effective verbal and written communication skills necessary to interface with various constituents including clients, treatment teams, and public entities.
- Student will demonstrate an appropriate level of professional development as evidenced by the knowledge and understanding of pertinent ethical and legal principles in the profession, in addition to current/emerging issues in the field.
- Students will achieve an appreciation and level of proficiency concerning the knowledge, skills, and competencies deemed appropriate for use in the profession as identified by the ongoing need for education and training beyond graduation.
Richmond Campus Core Faculty
Aimee Brickner, Ph.D., LPC, Program Director
Dr. Brickner is the Program Director for Clinical Mental Health Counseling at South University-Richmond. She has a M.A. in Interpersonal Communication from Miami University (OH), an Ed.S in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from James Madison University, and a Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision from James Madison University. Dr. Brickner is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and provides outpatient counseling services at the Charlottesville Counseling Collective in Charlottesville, VA. Her clinical population is diverse and includes many trauma survivors and children in the foster care system. Dr. Brickner’s research interests are in the areas of the intersectionality of trauma and supervision; the distribution of unseen work and emotional workloads in couple’s relationships; and how trauma manifests in different facets of the counseling relationship.
Faye Barner, Ph.D., LPC, CSOTP, LSATP , Clinical Coordinator
Faye Barner is a licensed professional counselor, licensed substance abuse treatment practitioner, and certified sex offender treatment provider. Dr. Barner has worked in the mental health field for over 20 years in both private and community-based settings. Her passions include working with and securing funding for disadvantage population programming as well as developing and implementing adolescent mentoring programs. She is also a professor in Counselor Education and Supervision. She serves as a mentor and clinical supervisor to a host of students and residents in counseling. Her specialty areas are working with adolescence substance use, sex offenders, and domestic violence survivors. Dr. Barner also provides workshops on mental health and substance use. Dr. Barner received her Doctor of Philosophy from Regent University in Counselor Education and Supervision.
Tiffanie Sutherlin, Ph.D., NCC, Assistant Professor
Dr. Tiffanie Sutherlin, PhD, NCC has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from George Mason University, a master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Liberty University, and a doctoral degree in Counseling and Supervision from James Madison University. Dr. Sutherlin’s research is focused on the intersection of spirituality and/or religion and mental health. Dr. Sutherlin has an array of clinical experiences which include university counseling centers, inpatient psychiatric hospitals, and providing intensive in-home therapy. Her teaching philosophy focuses on inviting students to take an active role in their learning by integrating their lived experiences.
Learn More About the South University Program That's Right For You.
Outstanding Education for Remarkable Careers
We're committed to helping our graduates make an impact in their professional and personal lives. We applaud our alumni and the difference they make. Check out what some of our counseling and psychology graduates have to say.
Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs
The Master of Arts (MA), Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program at South University is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP), (Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs, 1001 North Fairfax Street, Suite 510, Alexandria, VA 22314, phone (703) 535-5990.)