Do I Want to Become a School Counselor?

If you love helping people, you may already be looking at a degree in psychology. While just about every job in the world involves some paperwork, you love the idea of your day-to-day interactions being about helping people. You love the thought of sitting across from someone and listening to them, hearing their story. An interest in psychology, however, is only the beginning. If you’ve hopped on board and decided to get your BA in psychology, you still have to decide what you will get your master’s in.It’s not possible to get a psychology-related job without a master’s degree, since the care of human minds is, in many ways, akin to being a doctor or a nurse. You have to be highly trained to give your best care to the individuals you’ll serve, and that means doing a lot of schooling. Your master’s can shape your career path. While you’ll have all four years of your BA to decide what field you want to pursue, you’ll eventually have to pick what psychology route you want to take. But don’t worry--you’ve got great options. If you’re interested in becoming a school counselor, here are a few of the pros and cons.

Challenges of Being a School CounselorWe’ve already mentioned the five- to seven-year degree. That’s a lot of schooling, so you’ll want to be sure (as much as you can be) that a psychology job is right for you. Once you’ve obtained your master’s in school counseling, you still have to work one to two years in a supervised setting, depending on your state’s requirements. Once you’ve put in the school years, and the training years, you’re looking at seven to nine years of preparation. After all that, your salary could be relatively low--some of the lowest school counseling salaries are around $33,000 a year. (But the highest salaries are around $90,000 a year.) While it depends on your experience and your location, you won’t have a lot of control over your yearly salary. When it comes to getting a master’s in school counseling, your desire to help people has to be stronger than anything else. Benefits of Being a School Counselor

We don’t want to scare you off with that list of cons, because a school counseling jobs can be one of the most rewarding professions in the world. You work daily with kids, helping assess their learning capabilities, checking for problems at home, and making sure they’re getting the psychological care they need. And--a massive personal pro--you get summers off. Your job might be high-maintenance for nine months out of the year, but you’ll get the entire summer to relax. Plus, as far as education goes, a school counselor online degree makes it even easier. In the end, you likely considered a job in psychology because of your altruistic nature. A child’s life may take a different course forever because of you, and you’ll be helping people during their formative years. A job with a lot of power for good, school counseling might be the best profession for you.