Hampton University appears in our ranking of the 20 Best Master’s in Pastoral Counseling Online Degree Programs.
Hampton University (HU) offers a variety of specialized programs within the psychology and counseling discipline. These include two bachelor’s of arts degrees, one in psychology and one in counseling in addition to six master’s programs, two graduate psychology tracks, and one counseling doctorate degree. Undergraduate students who are unsure of their exact area of interest within the profession often choose the BA in psychology program to gain a broad foundation in the field. These students complete introductory courses like Theories of Personality and Developmental Psychology as well as more specialized electives like Political Psychology or Sport and Exercise Psychology. Individuals whose career goals definitely involve becoming a counselor or therapist may instead opt for the interdisciplinary studies counseling program through the Education Department in the School of Liberal Arts and Education. This program combines psychology, sociology, and education classes to give graduates a well-rounded introduction to counseling topics and background information regarding important issues facing couples and families.
Graduate students who plan to apply for a professional counseling license have many specialty options at Hampton University. These programs are offered through the Department of Counseling in the School of Liberal Arts and Education and include master’s of arts degrees in community mental health and student affairs as well as pastoral, school, and addiction counseling. New graduate students who are unsure of their desired area of emphasis begin in the general counseling track and later transfer to their chosen concentration in order to obtain a professional license.
The other two graduate degrees are post-master’s programs. The education specialist track provides current counselors with advanced practical study in the field and is offered either entirely online or on-campus. The doctoral program, Counselor Education and Supervision, prepares graduates to train new counselors and is offered online with some campus visits required. Finally, in the College of Psychology, there are two additional related master’s programs, the MS in Psychology and the MS in Marriage and Family Studies. These two programs have a greater emphasis on completing and interpreting research in the field. Before graduation from any of these programs, students must complete experiential learning activities either in the form of internships or practicums so that graduates have both the education and experience to thrive professionally.
Hampton University, located in Hampton, Virginia, near the Chesapeake Bay, is one of the most prominent African American universities in the United States with the U.S. News and World Report ranking it the 27th best southern regional university and third on its list of Historically Black Colleges and Universities. During the Civil War, after it was declared that any slaves entering Northern territory were considered free, many African Americans made the journey to nearby Fort Monroe. The unofficial beginnings of Hampton University were in 1861 when Mary Peake began educating these newly freed individuals in basic studies including reading and writing. The school’s official inception, though, was in 1868 as Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute with the mission of giving African Americans the education they needed to thrive and teach others in their community. The school underwent many changes but continued to provide an education to disenfranchised individuals including 40 years of Native American education after release from their imprisonment in the early 1900s. Today, the private university enrolls about 4500 students and holds true to its historically black roots with the African American population at about 92% of the total. There are almost 100 individual programs ranging from certificate-level to doctoral degrees, and many Hampton alumnae use this education to become prominent members of their communities with Booker T. Washington as one of the most recognizable.
In order for students to receive federal financial grants and loans, they must attend an accredited school. Along with providing this eligibility, accreditation also provides assurances to students that they are not only receiving an adequate education but also that the institution has the financial resources and proper organizational structure to remain solvent and run effectively. Hampton University has been accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) since 1932 and last completed the recertification process in 2008. In addition, the HU graduate counseling programs are accredited by a specialized organization, the Council of Accredited Counseling and Related Education Programs (CACREP). This certifies that students receive the necessary training to successfully enter the counseling profession and are prepared for all licensing examinations.
Hampton University emphasizes their comprehensive approach to admission decisions meaning that the admissions board considers factors like community involvement, extracurricular activities, and academic achievement equally. Prospective undergraduate students are advised to pursue a rigorous high school class schedule, though, and are required to complete at least four English, three math, and two natural science, foreign language, and social science courses. In addition, applicants must submit scores from either the ACT or SAT tests unless their high school GPA is 3.3 or greater or they are in the top ten percent of their class. To apply for admission, a completed application includes these scores, transcripts, $35 fee, letter of recommendation, and short essay along with an optional photo and tweet-like caption. Graduate admission requires a prior undergraduate degree, and applicants need to include their transcripts, personal statement, GRE score, and two letters of recommendation. Students applying for the doctoral counseling program also must possess a current professional counseling license.
At Hampton University, full-time undergraduate tuition runs approximately $23,000 per year with total costs including room, board, and fees totaling nearly $40,000. Full-time graduate students in one of the counseling programs can expect to pay about $12,000 per semester for tuition. To help offset these costs, HU does offer a variety of merit-based scholarships based on previous academic achievement. In addition, graduates can opt to participate in the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program offered by the federal government. This program cancels the remainder of a professional’s student debt after a specified amount of time working in designated high-need areas in addition to on-time loan payments. Hampton University staff in the Office of Financial And and Scholarships help students understand their options, arrange for any necessary federal loans, and provide resources detailing private scholarship and grant opportunities.