Students are encouraged to apply to the mental health associate program prior to the semester they begin their studies. Students who plan to major in mental health associate will be assigned the temporary major of pre-mental health associate, with POS code 560, until they are officially admitted to the mental health associate program. The Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration at Takoma Park will assign a matriculated code once students are admitted to the mental health associate program.
This curriculum is designed to educate a mental health generalist who is trained for a variety of related occupations, rather than for a specific job. Students study a core of general education subjects combined with specialized courses related to a wide spectrum of human services. Part of the curriculum consists of supervised field experiences in several different kinds of agencies and institutions in the field of human services such as those in county and state mental health departments, community mental health organizations and agencies, gerontology, hospice, drugs and alcohol rehabilitation, corrections, and school systems, and in culturally disadvantaged areas.
The mental health associate curriculum has three objectives: (1) to prepare the career student who wants a technical curriculum for immediate paid employment upon graduation, (2) to provide the transfer student with an excellent foundation, and flexible background so that study may continue in the field of mental health, social work, or psychology, or some allied field, such as substance abuse, or gerontology, and (3) to permit a student to continue with an education on a part-time basis, while being gainfully employed.
In addition to the scholastic standards required of all students at the College, students in the mental health associate curriculum are expected to achieve a grade of C or better in each mental health and psychology course. Completion of all requirements for this curriculum will lead to the award of the AAS.