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Mental Health Worker


Description

Mental health workers work with people who are emotionally and mentally unstable, people who need help when it comes to coping with stress, anxiety, eating disorders, and depression, among other things. Mental health workers can work in private practice, with hospitals, in mental health clinics, and with shelters and other non-profit organizations. Their goal is to see their patients through difficult times, and assist them in setting themselves up as independent and mentally stable members of society.

Mental health workers assist their clients in a number of ways. They meet with each client, assessing the areas for treatment, and developing a treatment plan which can include life skills courses, discussion, relaxation techniques, and medical assistance. Mental health workers work closely with physicians, family members, and other social service workers in order to establish an effective treatment plan for the client. Careful notes about each session and each therapeutic step must be documented, in order for a mental health worker to track the client's progress along the road to recovery.

Mental health workers may also determine client's eligibility for social assistance, insurance, and future therapy sessions.
 
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South University

As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.

Programs Offered:
  • Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA)
  • Psychology (BA)

 

 



  Average Earnings  
Lowest 10% of Earners:
$21,050
 
Median Salary:
$32,850
 
Highest 10% of Earners:
$52,240

  Interests and Skills  
Successful mental health workers are mature, patient, sensitive and non-judgmental, as well as resourceful, emotionally stable, and flexible when it comes to hours, workplace, and client behavior. They are effective communicators and are good at writing detailed, comprehensive reports. Computer skills are also an asset. Mental health workers should have a genuine desire to help all people.
 

  Typical Tasks  
  • Assess needs of new clients and recommend appropriate workshops and programs
  • Provide support for clients' families
  • Help clients manage medications
  • Meet with clients regularly, giving support and discussing any difficulties or problems
  • Refer clients to other social services
  • Run workshops and programs dealing with issues like communication and dealing with stress
  • Assist in evaluating the treatment programs by monitoring changes in client's behavior
  • Communicate information about client with other social service agencies
  • Work as an advocate for social services and public funding of group homes, halfway houses, and clinics
  • Stay informed about new developments in the field by reading professional literature and attending seminars
  • A mental health worker's typical day will involve a lot of listening. The day may involve one-on-one sessions, where the client and the worker try and determine the underlying issues of the client's problems, or group sessions, where a number of people experiencing the same issues can gather and support one another.
  • The worker will try and suggest coping mechanisms and relaxation techniques to help the client along the road to mental health. A typical day may involve meetings with other health care practitioners, writing reports, and developing future strategies for the clients. They will work regular workweeks, with evenings and weekends off, or they may work irregular hours, depending on their clients' needs.

  Workplaces, Employers and Industries  
  • Mental health workers generally work out of an office, either in a private practice, a therapy clinic, or in a hospital. They may also be employed by non-profit organizations, shelters, and private companies.

  Long Term Career Potential  
Mental health workers may choose to switch environments, and try working in group homes, at schools, or with young offenders. They may also choose to go back to school, and become a social worker, counselor, psychologist or nurse.
 

  Educational Paths  
While there is no specific educational path to becoming a mental health worker, most of these individuals have completed a college diploma or university degree in a field such as human services, community services, social work, psychology or counseling.
 

Sources:
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, 2002, http://www.bls.gov/oes/2002/oes_nat.htm

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South University

As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.

Programs Offered:
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CTU Classes Are As Close As The Mobile App.
Take classes with the help of your smartphone, tablet or laptop. CTU’s online bachelor’s programs were ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News & World Report.

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Argosy University, Online Programs

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