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Counseling Students and Participation in the Kingdom

March 23, 2015

This week as we talk about participation in God’s mission and the impact of 1 Corinthians 9:23, we highlight our redesigned counseling program.  Not only does the program better prepare students to serve as licensed professionals, it also provides the opportunity for students to join God in mission.

The counseling program at Sioux Falls Seminary has evolved in many ways since I graduated in 2008.  Today, we offer a Master of Arts in Counseling degree that prepares and qualifies students for licensure as Licensed Professional Counselors and Licensed Marriage & Family Therapists in South Dakota and surrounding states.  Foundationally, any counseling program should provide the opportunity for a career.  At Sioux Falls Seminary, we provide immeasurably more.

Learning through Integration
Students in the Master of Arts in Counseling program do not just learn how to become competent, ethical, and professional therapists, they learn all of this in the context of Christian theology and doctrinal beliefs.  Our counseling program at Sioux Falls Seminary is run by instructors and professors who are all trained both psychologically and theologically.  All of the instructors and professors are also full-time integrative practitioners who treat individuals, couples, and families at Sioux Falls Psychological Services, the seminary’s full-service counseling ministry.  Course content is taught through the foundational beliefs that all truth is God’s truth and that the love of God is foundational to all academic knowing.

Service to Clients in a Clinical Setting
From the day that Master of Arts in Counseling students begin their graduate work, they are immersed into the practice of clinical therapy.  The Community Counseling Clinic at Sioux Falls Psychological Services is a training clinic.  Through the Community Counseling Clinic, students serve individuals of all ages, couples, and families who have little or no insurance.  Students are supervised at all times by licensed supervisors.  This robust clinical training experience gives them the opportunity to receive valuable experience and, at the same time, serve those who struggle with mental health issues and cannot afford care elsewhere.

Participation in the Kingdom of God
Every counseling student embarks upon their own journey of personal awareness and growth, spiritual formation, and professional development.  As they expand their worldviews, they become lifelong learners of psychology and theology who embrace the demand to participate in God’s mission as they serve, with love and respect, every person they meet.

To become a therapist is to take up the call to love and serve all of God’s people and to bestow grace upon the poor, the meek, and the broken.  Counseling students at Sioux Falls Seminary learn that every person they provide counsel to is part of a larger system of family, friends, and community who are all part of God’s kingdom.

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