Carey Counseling & Consulting, Virtual Alternatives
Brenda Carey

Executive Director,  Clinician, Consultant, Crisis Responder, Credentialed Supervisor

Virtual and Telephonic Therapy 
(910) 520-4393 (24/7)

Credentialed Supervision

As a supervisor to many clinicians since 1997, consider me experienced. Some years ago, a university student of mine called long after he completed our course together.  He begged me to seek the new credential required for supervision. I didn't know the rules had changed. The new information prompted me to consider getting my "S." It took three seconds or less to realize - I wanted my "S"! I have a lot of experiences, case studies... to offer and I truly enjoy working with anyone looking to enter the field.

I followed his advice, did the required work and received the credential. I am honored to work with LPCAs who choose to work with me for two full years (1 hour per 40 hour work week). Students must graduate from an accredited graduate school, pass the National Counseling Exam and apply for their provisional license (LPCA). This is followed by a long-term commitment between LPCS and LPCA. Just as it is in the client/therapist relationship, there should be a good fit with an LPCS (Licensed Professional Counselor and Credentialed Supervisor) and his/her LPCAs (Licensed Professional Counselor Associates). Quarterly, the NC Board reviews the application packets submitted by post graduate students and will grant an LPCA number. Without this number, one is not allowed to count any credentialed supervision hour prior. When the LPCA number is received, there is a date on it, and that date dictates when your supervision hours may begin, or begin to be counted. It's quite a rigorous process. It's also an expensive one. Many companies may offer to pay a portion of their associate's supervision. Military spouses may apply for scholarships. 

In the workplace, there may be a credentialed supervisor for an LPCA to work with and economically, it makes sense. However, imagine many of your issues concern work experience (as I've experienced) - the way clients are handled, personality conflicts with your Clinical Director, the frustration regarding anything company related. Now consider the person you discuss these things with - likely the clinical director. Now perhaps it makes sense because it may be regarded as a conflict of interest. I think most agree, but students choose based on economics and have to most times. Consider fighting for what's best for your career path. Get $1.00 extra an hour to meet nearly have the weekly cost, be creative and advocate for yourself.  At the very least, it does not lend itself to open communication - as it should.  Some associates will add this cost right into their student loans. The cost for supervision is $100.00 per hour. You can see why economics come into play when this is once a week for two years! There is a liability issue on the side of the supervisor and the biggest consideration in the cost per hour. Of course, a good deal of supervision remains discussions on client cases, technique, how to communicate difficult things, ethics, best practices, your counseling style, taking constructive criticism and adapting the necessary changes into your practice. LPCAs have more and more opportunities these days and with that comes responsibility for them and increased supervisor liability. I've had LPCAs right out of school put in private practice to work with young children (2 years and up) with zero experience working with this population or working as a private practitioner. Oh, sorry. I'll leave my biases at the door. I promise. This just helps associates realize or simply consider the liability issues supervisors take on. My mantra, all supervisor's mantras and all clinicians (associates and fully licensed) mantras should always be "Do No Harm."

There are a variety of options for supervising - authorized taped sessions, clinician reports/notes... and in NC, it's written that we meet in "real time" and must "see" one another. The writing is ambiguous, and I credit the foreword thinking of the Board for writing it this way to insure all associates have access to the service they must have for licensure. I know for many, it's difficult to find a credentialed supervisor near you. I'm looking into other licenses to provide supervision elsewhere, but I see LPCs coming together, and maybe, just perhaps, we are reaching the day when a "like licensed" supervisor will meet all state requirements and have the ability to provide supervision for LPCAs in other states. I'm hoping you might consider breaking new ground and looking into your state requirements to see if you might bring a supervisor's credentials to the board and see if the officers might give approval - simply due to the inability to access your requirements in your geographic area.
Well, I'm licensed in NC for now, and if I become licensed elsewhere, you will be the first to know. I'll also seek other credentialed supervisors for our company when the need becomes greater.  Again, utilize any route to contact us, and we will ensure you meet the requirements for full licensure.