Substance Abuse Counseling

Substance Abuse Counselor Certification

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Help Change Lives

Are you prepared to show warmth and empathy to a client struggling with drug or alcohol abuse? Are you able to commit to your client’s health while maintaining your own well being? If so, then a career as a certified substance abuse counselor may be right for you.

As a substance abuse counselor, you will play a very important role in the life of your clients. You will provide them with information and support to overcome their chemical dependency by applying the 12 Core Functions of a Substance Abuse Counselor.*

MWCC’s Substance Abuse Counseling program trains students to become a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC) so they are ready to sit for the IC&RC International Examination for Alcohol & Drug Counselors (ADC). It also prepares students to take the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for Licensure of Alcohol and Drug Counselor II (LADC II) certification exam.

What Jobs Can You Get With Substance Abuse Counselor Certification?

Drug abuse counselor education prepares you to work with those struggling with addiction. It is a challenging but extremely gratifying job. You can see people change their lives and overcome obstacles that seemed insurmountable.

Substance abuse counselor certification in Massachusetts qualifies recipients for a range of jobs in the counseling field. You might work at a clinic, an inpatient or outpatient facility, a private practice, or even for the government.

Why Pursue Substance Abuse Certification?

Over the past decade, a rise in opioid addiction has made national headlines. Massachusetts has suffered from this problem, with nearly 30,000 deaths in 2018 alone from opioid- and heroin-related causes. Substance abuse counselors can help address this disturbing trend. When you study with us, you receive tools to help treat people with opioid and other addictions and guide them toward a new path.

Many people are inspired to pursue this career after seeing what’s happening on the news. If you feel driven to make a difference, getting your drug abuse counselor education is a smart option that will help many people. Qualities of a good substance abuse counselor include:

  • Patience.
  • Standout communication skills.
  • The ability to listen without judgment.
  • Confidence.
  • Self-motivation.


Your courses will address alcohol and drug abuse assessment and counseling, clinical evaluation, treatment planning, case management, and education for patients, families, and the greater community. The 8-course program ends with a 300-hour practicum that offers you an opportunity for on-the-job experience while also earning supervised hours that can be applied to qualify for state certification.

Continue to a Degree

Students who complete this 8-course substance abuse counselor certificate may choose to apply their credits toward the A.S. in Human Services, completing their associate degree with just 8 more courses.

Why Attend a Community College?

Community colleges provide a more transitional educational environment than traditional four-year colleges. They are more nurturing and supportive, making them ideal for those students who are just leaving high school, returning to school after many years away, or balancing family duties with school responsibilities.

The small class sizes encourage students to ask questions and seek individualized answers. Our teachers care deeply for our students and want them to succeed. By attending The Mount, you can start your substance abuse counselor certification online!

The Benefits of Choosing Our Substance Abuse Certificate Program

Pursuing a substance abuse counseling certification at our school in Gardner, MA, sets you up for success. We offer a high level of support and guidance to our students. When you attend MWCC, you don’t have to do it all alone. Our drug and alcohol abuse counselor training and certification are designed with the busy, modern student in mind. That student may be a veteran who just finished their military service or a grandparent looking for a career change.

Whoever you are, there is a place for you at MWCC. We hold substance abuse counseling online courses to help you gain certification through the flexible schedule you need. We also provide:

  • Child care for parents so they can attend classes.
  • Career services to help you find a job after you get your substance abuse counseling degree.
  • A food pantry for students in need at our Gardner, MA, campus.

The small class sizes are equivalent to a private university, but our price tag isn’t. You will spend much less on our programs than you would at a four-year college. We offer affordable education that won’t leave you with years of debt.

Learn more about the certificate for substance abuse counseling at MWCC by requesting additional information or applying online today. It only takes a few minutes to fill out our application, and there is no fee and no essay requirement.


*The 12 Core Functions of a Substance Abuse Counselor

  1. Screening
  2. Intake
  3. Orientation
  4. Assessment
  5. Treatment Planning
  6. Counseling (Individual, Group, and Significant Others)
  7. Case Management
  8. Crisis Intervention
  9. Client Education
  10. Referral
  11. Report and Record Keeping
  12. Consultation with other Professionals in Regard to Client Treatment/Services