Counseling and Human Services FAQs

Q: What job categories will I be qualified for with an AS degree in Counseling & Human Services?
A: Graduates of our program are readily employed by a variety of local social service agencies. Some examples of job categories which our graduates secure are: drug & alcohol counselor, family support specialist, case manager, social services specialist, and child abuse worker. 

Q: How long will it take me to obtain this degree?
A: An individual enrolled full-time in the program may earn their degree in five semesters. The completion time for part-time students varies depending on the number of courses for which they enroll each semester. 

Q: How many credit hours are required to obtain this degree?
A: The AS in Counseling & Human Services is a 60 credit hour program. This includes specific courses in Counseling & Human Services, as well as general education and elective courses. 

Q: Is this program “user friendly” for students who are employed?
A: Yes. Most of the courses taught in Counseling & Human Services are scheduled in the evening, usually between 6:00 pm and 8:45 pm. Many courses are also taught in the afternoon. The program is designed to meet the needs of the active adult learner. 

Q: What is practicum?
A: Practicum is similar in nature to an internship. As a practicum student, you will be assigned to a local human services agency to complete no less than 200 clinical, supervised hours per semester. The program has agreements with over 30 diverse agencies in the greater Tampa area at which students may complete their practicums. Each student is required to complete three practicums in order to graduate from this program. 

Q: Can I do my practicum in the evening or on weekends? 
A: No. Most social services agencies operate during normal business hours and it is during this time that qualified agency personnel are available to supervise students. 

Q: Are there any prerequisites for practicum?
A: Yes. Students must complete a minimum of five program courses with a grade of 'C' or better prior to being considered for practicum. 

The required courses are:
HUS 1001 - Introduction to Human Services
HUS 1024 - Abnormal Behavior
HUS 1111 - Interpersonal Skills in Human Services
HUS 1200 - Introduction to Group Process
HUS 1406 - Etiology and Treatment of Substance Use Disorders

Q: Will the courses taken in this program transfer towards a bachelor’s degree at another college or university?
A: Yes. Many of our graduates continue their education for their bachelor’s and master’s degrees. The program has transfer agreements with several colleges and universities in the Tampa Bay area. Please see an academic advisor and visit our Transfer Agreement webpage.

Most of the credits earned for the AS degree in Counseling & Human Services can be transferred towards a relevant bachelor’s degree at the following schools: 
Indian River State College (
Saint Leo University (
University of South Florida (

Q: Is employment readily available to people with this degree?
A: Yes. Graduates from this program are readily employed in the Tampa Bay area. The profession of Human Services is currently one of the fastest growing occupations in the United States, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This positive employment outlook is expected to continue. 

Q: At which HCC campuses are Counseling and Human Services courses taught?
A: Counseling & Human Services courses are only taught at the Dale Mabry campus. However, general education and elective courses may be taken at any HCC campus. 

Q: Can mature adults who have been out of school for several years do well in this program?
A: Yes. Counseling & Human Services is a profession which requires mature judgment and perspective. The average age range for students in this program is mid-twenties through early sixties. Mature adults are encouraged to apply to the program, and they usually do very well. 

Q: After completing the Counseling & Human Services Program, will I be eligible for licensure as a mental health professional in Florida?
A: No. To be licensed as a mental health professional in Florida, an individual must have earned at least a master’s degree in a relevant discipline, must have completed several years of post-master’s supervised experience, and must pass a state administered examination. Most jobs in the human services field do not require an individual to be licensed.

Graduates of the program do satisfy the academic requirements to become a Board Certified Human Services Practitioner (BC-HSP). 

Q: Is financial aid available to students enrolled in this program?
A: Yes. Many students in the Counseling & Human Services Program receive financial assistance from a variety of sources. Student interested in applying for financial aid should contact the Financial Aid Office on any HCC campus. 

Q: When was this program established?
A: The Counseling & Human Services Program was established at HCC in 1974. Over the years it has continued to grow and to develop into an excellent training program, which is very well respected in the local professional community.

The program has been nationally accredited by the Council for Standards in Human Services Education ( ) since 1980, and it continues to maintain this accreditation. It is the only nationally accredited Human Services Program in the state of Florida.