Degree in Counselor Education and Supervision Fills Void in University System of Maryland

(BOWIE, Md.) – Bowie State University now offers a new Ph.D. degree in counselor education and supervision this semester to address the dire need for more senior level counselors and administrators to work with students in the nation’s schools.  

The Doctor of Philosophy degree in Counselor Education and Supervision, with a specialization in Social Justice Counseling is unique within the University of Maryland. It will prepare students as future practitioners, supervisors, counselor educators and researchers in the field of counseling. 

 Bowie State joins Hampton University and North Carolina A&T as the third HBCU offering the degree.  The program was developed to align with standards of the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). Bowie State is the only institution in Maryland with CACREP accreditation of master’s degree programs in school counseling and mental health counseling  

Nationwide, the national school counselor ratio was 408: 1 in school year 2021-2022 according to the American School Counselor Association. Research studies show that smaller counselor–student ratios support increases in standardized test scores, attendance, graduation rates as well as a decrease in disciplinary incidents. 

“We’re at a tipping point,” said Dr. Otis Williams, chair of the Department of Counseling & Psychological Studies at Bowie State. “Our public schools are under siege with students regularly bringing weapons, illegal drugs and other contraband to schools every day all across America. And when you throw social media into the mix it can spell major problems for students with learning becoming the last thing on their minds. That’s why this Ph.D. program is so important.” 

Graduates of the new Ph.D. program will be equipped to work in a variety of fields in counseling including a mental health supervisor, researcher, school counselor director, department administrator, high school educator and other roles. 

“I’m very optimistic about our doctoral program,” said Dr. Williams. “Once people know that Bowie State offers a Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision, I expect inquiries and applications for acceptance into the program to increase dramatically.”