Mounia M.





What are the best volunteer/ intern environments for someone trying to get into career counseling?

Should I focus on volunteering with non-profits that provide job placement assistance, resume writing, and the like as those skills will be usuful to me or should I focus on working with organizations that are apart of the mental health industry? #career #career-counseling #internships #volunteering

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Hi Mounia -

To be a Career Counselor you will definitely need to be in an environment where you can be mentored and learn the various aspects of this fascinating career. Having said that you will not really get the level of involvement that you will need trying the for-profit route. Companies may hire you as an entry level HR assistant but they will not have the time to devote to educating you nor will they actually be doing very much in the way of actual career counseling.

Therefore the non-profit route would be my suggestion as these organizations ALWAYS need help and if you are lucky and get in an org where you can be mentored while actually helping you will benefit so much more...

Keep in mind that you will need to obtain certification from an accredited organization to ultimately be considered a credible career counselor and these programs can be both rigorous and have requirements for a minimum number of provable counseling hours. This requirement could be fulfilled working with a non-profit where you may actually be involved(although supervised) dealing directly with clients. This can be a very rewarding career and I wish you luck in beginning your path!


Last updated Feb 19 '17 at 09:56

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My suggestion would be to start to narrow what area of career counceling will be your focus. Volunteer with teenagers and see if high school students will be your focus. Volunteer at a senior center to see if older adults reintering the workplace is your passion. Maybe volunteer at a shelter... You get the idea. Once you have the education requirements, AND have been working with or volunteering with your selected demographic, your chance of being hired in that field improve. Showing you have a passion for people, and give your time to this group of people will make you stand out from others who only accepted postions that were paid, or that took positions only to help their careers...

Last updated Apr 20 at 19:29

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When you are young and starting out, I would recommend a For-profit organization. It is likely that they pay higher. That said, however, any organization that offers career counseling would look good on your resume. If you want to work for a career office at a college, it would be best to volunteer at a college. I don't know what your education level is but colleges almost always require a masters.

Last updated Feb 19 '17 at 09:43

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