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What is an Intern? Defining “Intern” and “Counseling Internships”

When you hear the word intern, you probably think of a time between sophomore and junior year of college when students can “try out” their chosen profession. This is not the case in the counseling world when it comes to counseling internships. When you choose a Licensed Professional Counselor Intern (LPC-I) or Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Associate (LMFTA) in the state of Texas, you are getting a professional trained to help.

Interns and associates in Texas receive their license to counseling only after completing an undergraduate degree (bachelor’s degree) and a master’s degree. The master’s degree must be in counseling, psychology, or a related field. University programs are accredited by a national accrediting body that insures course work is rigorous and comprehensive.

In addition to their master’s degree, licensed interns and associates in Texas have passed the Texas State Board of Examiners Licensing Exam for Licensed Professional Counselors or Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists.  This is a national exam that covers not only the core components of their field but also federal requirements. Once the interns and associates pass their exam, a board of professional counselors that are licensed and highly trained supervise them for 3000 hours. These professionals oversee each and every case.

What you may not expect when you hire an intern is the wealth of experience. Many counselor interns have come from other fields including medicine, business, and university-level teaching. For example one counselor intern earned her medical degree and completed training in obstetrics and gynecology. Another intern logged over 12 years of experience as a professional psychotherapist in Mexico and Europe.

Counselor interns and marriage and family therapist associates are qualified, experienced providers. Because they are generally not paid by insurance, your diagnosis and treatment plan will never be shared unless you request it. When it’s time for help, confidently call on them.

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