Welcome to our Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Program.


The RMHC program & degree are centered around training you to work with individuals who are Deaf and/or have other disabilities, helping them attain fulfilling, productive and independent lifestyles. There are five major components emphasized through your coursework and practical experiences, including:

  • individual and group counseling theory and technique;
  • influence of career acquisition and personal independence on the daily lives of persons with disabilities;
  • social and psychological impact of disability on an individual and family;
  • federal, state, and private service delivery systems for persons with disabilities; and
  • self-awareness on the part of counselors-in-training.


Applicants must already hold a bachelor’s degree, and 2 years of work experience is preferred. This is a 2 year (81 – 90 credit) program that also requires a practical internship and the development of a professional portfolio project.  New cohorts begin each Fall Term, and courses are delivered in an on-campus format.

Choose your degree option

Those five components are grouped into three program tracks that you can choose from.  While each has their own unique set of courses, they also share a common core.

  • Option 1: Rehabilitation Counseling (RC).
  • Option 2: Rehabilitation Counseling for the Deaf (RCD)This option is one of only three deafness specialty programs in the United States.
  • Option 3: Mental Health Counseling (MHC).


Where can this degree take you?

Prospects after graduation
Over the past five years, 96-100 percent of our graduates were employed in appropriate professional fields within six months of graduation. Retention in the field of rehabilitation remains at 94 percent up to five years after graduation.  Here are some of the places that graduates from our program are employed:

Vocational Rehabilitation

  • Alabama State VR
  • Arizona State VR
  • California State VR
  • Georgia State VR
  • Nevada State VR
  • Oregon State VR
  • Pennsylvania State VR
  • Texas State VR
  • Utah State VR
  • Vermont State VR
  • Washington State VR
  • Alternative to Work
  • Commission for the Blind
  • Department of Labor
  • Employment Specialist
  • Social Security Administration
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Veterans’ Administration

Mental Health

  • Addictions Counselor
  • Community Mental Health
  • County Mental Health
  • Criminal Justice Counselor
  • Independent Living

Higher Education

  • Office of Disability Services
  • School District Youth Transition
  • TRIO programs
  • University Counseling Center


CONTACT US: dsps@wou.edu

Dr. Denise Thew-Hackett Program Coordinator RMHC Program thewd@wou.edu | VP: 503-715-0756 Kathy Heide Kathy Heide Administrative Program Assistant Division of Deaf Studies and Professional Studies heidek@wou.edu | 503-838-8322