The Rehabilitation Education programs at Emporia State University (ESU) are comprised of a B.S. in Rehabilitation Services Education and an M.S. in Rehabilitation Counseling. In 1959, the campus was made fully accessible for persons with mobility impairments. Established in 1966, the Rehabilitation Counseling program is fully accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education through 2014 (www.core-rehab.org). The Rehabilitation Program offers a 60-credit degree on campus, with 30 or more of the necessary credits available online to accommodate distance students throughout the state. It is the sole graduate-level rehabilitation program in Kansas and Nebraska.
There are presently 16 graduate students in the Rehabilitation Counseling program. The department has 3.5 full-time, tenure-track faculty, with an instructor-to-student ratio of 1:5. All faculty members teaching CORE-accredited curriculum have doctoral degrees in rehabilitation counselor education or a closely related field, and each holds the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC; www.crccertification.com) credential. All students in the Rehabilitation Counseling program are required to maintain a B (3.00) average or greater to qualify for degree candidacy. The cumulative GPA of our graduates for 2013 (9) was 3.75. Student outcomes are evaluated annually using data collected in the program assessment process.
Since 1966, over 500 students have earned an M.S. in Rehabilitation Counseling at ESU. The program has graduated 27 students in the past five years (2008-2013), averaging four to five annually. Despite ESU’s rural location, 22% of graduates from 2008-2013 were from underrepresented groups, including persons with disabilities. Between the years of 2007-2012, 85% of program graduates were employed by Social and Rehabilitation Services (SRS), Veterans Affairs, various non-profit and/or community-based programs, and in private practice and/or for-profit settings in both rehabilitation and counseling.
Certification as a CRC is not a condition of rehabilitation counselor employment in the state of Kansas. The Behavioral Sciences Regulatory Board (BSRB) accepts the National Counseling Exam (NCE) to become a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). Although national certification and state licensure are not required of rehabilitation counselors employed in state and community rehabilitation settings, from 2007-2012, 27% of program graduates chose to obtain the LPC, Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC), or CRC credential.