Higher Education Emphasis

The higher education emphasis (48 credit hours) provides course work and experiences for those who plan to seek employment in post-secondary settings such as community colleges, technical colleges, community colleges and center systems, public and private colleges, and universities. In addition to the core courses within the program, there is an opportunity to explore the history and structure of student services, student developmental theories, specific offices and positions within the field, and competencies and skills necessary to work as a student development professional. The program is built on requisite counseling skills that are essential to the success of student affairs professionals. Regardless of the administrative programming or counseling responsibilities students may seek, these counseling skills will provide a good foundation for success. State licensure is not required for those seeking a degree in higher education counseling.

While there are numerous and diverse opportunities in the field of student development, entry-level positions are most often found in residence life, admissions, financial aid, career services, academic advising, and special programs (e.g., offices providing services for international students, orientation) on college and university campuses. Beyond the entry-level positions, there are many opportunities to specialize or remain a generalist in student affairs work. These career moves, when built on a solid academic preparation, frequently lead to high-level administrative positions in divisions of student affairs including but not limited to Director, Dean of Students, or Assistant Chancellor (Vice President) for Student Affairs Administration.