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San Diego State University

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 Welcome to the School Counseling Program!

       Congratulations Class of 2016!



School Counseling at Commencement 2015
Left to Right: Dr. Joey Nuñez Estrada, Dr. Trish Hatch, Dr. Laura Owen, Dean Joseph F. Johnson Jr.

Program Design

The program consists of two years of full-time graduate study.

Students enter a 60 unit Masters of Science (MS) degree in Counseling with a specialization in School Counseling and the California Pupil Personnel Services (PPS) credential for School Counseling.

Students begin taking courses in Summer prior to the Fall Semester. First year students have class onsite in schools a minimum of one day per week. Second year students are on school sites a minimum of two full days a week.

Program Mission

The mission of the SDSU School Counseling program is to prepare school counselors to become leaders, advocates and systems change agents in our diverse schools. As an integral part of the total educational program for student success, school counselors learn to design, develop, implement and evaluate their comprehensive school counseling program to ensure that every student receives developmentally appropriate competencies in academic, career and personal/social development. School counselors become professional student advocates who promote equity and access to a rigorous education for every student and who work to prevent and remove barriers to learning. Our School Counseling graduates develop themselves as culturally competent leaders in educational reform and social justice in the schools and communities they serve.

School Counseling Program to Host

White House and SDSU Logos


We are proud to announce that San Diego State University school counseling faculty and students  will be hosting the next "invitation only" White House Convening focused on school counseling and college access at SDSU on November 17-18, 2014.  

The Reach Higher initiative is the First Lady's effort to inspire every student in America to take charge of their future by completing their education past high school, whether at a professional training program, a community college, or a four-year college or university.  In today's economy, a high school diploma just isn't enough. Students have to reach higher, which is why the First Lady is working to rally the country around the President's "North Star" goal — that by 2020, America will once again have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.  The Reach Higher initiative will help make sure all students understand what they need to complete their education, including:

  • Exposing students to college and career opportunities
  • Understanding financial aid eligibility that can make college affordability a reality
  • Encouraging academic planning and summer learning opportunities
  • Supporting high school counselors who can help more kids get into college


Last January, the President and the First Lady asked hundreds of college presidents to increase college opportunity for all Americans. He asked them to help because a college degree remains one of the surest pathways into the middle class in America, and is an especially powerful engine of social and economic mobility.

Over this decade, nearly 8 in 10 new jobs will require some postsecondary education or training beyond high school. And of the 30 fastest growing occupations, half require a college degree. At the same time, college graduates earn an average of 77 percent more per hour than a high school graduate. President Obama set forth a goal early in his first term to guide our work in education – to lead the world with the highest proportion of college graduates by 2020.

That’s why the Administration has continued to follow up on the January College Opportunity Summit commitments, as well as move toward new ones.  The Administration announced in August that the White House will host another College Opportunity Summit on December 4, 2014. The goal of this conference (SAN DIEGO)  will build on the work launched in the first College Opportunity Summit last January, while launching initiatives in new areas. The December summit will focus on building sustainable collaborations in communities with strong K-12 and higher education partnerships to encourage college going, and supporting colleges to work together to dramatically improve persistence and increase college completion, especially for first-generation, low-income, and underrepresented students. 

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Program Details

  • Download the Sequence of Study for Full-Time Students
  • In addition to classes, students are also required to work in different schools sites immediately into the program. With the help of a site supervisor, students are able to develop their counseling skills and focus on student's academic, personal/social, and career development.

We are looking for prospective students who:

  • Have a desire to counsel and guide students in academic, career and personal/social development in school settings
  • Are passionate advocates for students in schools
  • Demonstrate interest in working with diverse children, adolescents and their families in school
  • Are motivated, empathetic, committed and responsive to working for social justice and equity in school and community contexts
  • Have skills in critical thinking, professional writing ability, are good oral presenters, and are intellectually flexible and insightful
  • Are responsible for their own learning
  • Demonstrate a professional demeanor, are dependable, and ethically appropriate
  • Are self aware and culturally competent
  • Demonstrate a willingness to contribute to the learning of others
  • Show courage and commitment to work on their own personal issues that may interfere in their work with clients
  • Have the desire to be a leader in systemic change