Mar 5, 2016
Hi all,
First, forgive me if this is not an appropriate topic for this forum or if I've missed a similar thread. I've seen older threads on here about mental health counseling work in California which were very helpful to me but potentially outdated. I'm hoping someone one here may be able to give me some advice, but if the question is too off-topic, I understand.

My wife has completed masters degrees in school counseling and mental health counseling. We are contemplating a move to California (specifically, to San Jose or Santa Cruz) for my work. But we are concerned about the employment situation she would face there. I don't want to move for my sake, only to discover that I've sabotaged her career, which certainly matters just as much as mine!

Can any one answer some or all of the following questions for us?
  • When interning towards an LPCC licensure (i.e. while a PCCI), are you typically paid in California, and if so, how much? I see on some employers websites that they offer "Stipends" to their interns, but they give no more information
  • How competitive are these intern positions? Could she reasonably expect to find one within the first year of moving there? Of course this will vary a great deal depending on local factors, but I'd just like to get a rough estimate
  • How important is it to speak Spanish in these positions? Many job postings we have seen say that it is "a plus" or "preferred," but we're not sure whether this literally means it will be considered a bonus qualification, or if in practice it is impossible to get a job in mental health without being bilingual.

  • Last but not least, does anyone have any advice about what other types of related jobs she might be qualified for and able to pursue? For example, are there other credentials that would allow her to work with students in schools, or in other types of "counseling-like" environments? Her areas of expertise thus far is domestic violence victims and crisis counseling.

    Thanks in advance for your time and thought! It's so hard to know what you're getting yourself into when you move across state lines these days...
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