2019-2020 Graduate Catalog

Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MACMHC) - Maryland

Degree: Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling – Maryland (CMHC-MD)

Program Mission: The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program in Maryland has a 5-point mission statement built on a foundation of T.R.U.S.T.

  • Training highly skilled professional counselors to whom pastors will confidently refer their members for mental health counseling.
  • Reaching out to serve the underserved with particular emphasis on counseling the military community, minority communities, and communities of faith.
  • Unifying the church and society by preparing counselors to provide treatment and advocacy across doctrinal, denominational, racial, ethnic, and gender lines.
  • Striving to be made all things to all people while remaining under Christ’s law.
  • Transforming the field of counseling by translating our faith into our professional practice through intellectually credible innovation and research.

Program Description:

The Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (Maryland) degree program provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary to help diverse people in a wide range of challenging circumstances within the context of clinical mental health counseling. Our students learn about the biological and environmental causes of mental illness and are trained to provide evidence-based treatment that integrates faith into counseling theory and practice. The program is designed to prepare students for state licensure as a professional counselor in Maryland, Washington D.C., and Virginia.

Program Learning Objectives

The CMHC-MD program has established four major competency areas with specific learning objectives. Graduates of the Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program at the LBC|CSGS Maryland site will demonstrate proficiency in each area and on all objectives.

  1. Professional Counselor Identity & Ethics: The graduate student will intentionally develop a professional identity that emphasizes personal and professional congruency; relies on ethical decision-making; and applies theories, models, and skills of counseling informed by comprehensive knowledge of curricular domains and current research.
  2. Multicultural & Social Justice Competence: The graduate student will demonstrate the ability to recognize multicultural and pluralistic characteristics within and among diverse groups nationally and internationally; identify the impact of heritage, attitudes, beliefs, understandings, and acculturative experiences on an individual’s view of others; and respond to the effects of power and privilege on counselors and clients.
  3. Spiritual & Religious Competence: The graduate student will demonstrate the capacity to recognize the contributions of spirituality, religion, and ethnic worldview to shaping diverse expressions of Christian faith and psychosocial functioning; translate faith into professional practice through the application of Christian Integration research and models; and develop culturally competent strategies for mental health advocacy in Christian faith communities.
  4. Clinical Mental Health Counseling: The graduate student intern will demonstrate the knowledge and skills necessary to entry-level clinical mental health practice including etiology, assessment, case conceptualization, diagnostic process, and techniques and interventions for treatment while consistently demonstrating evidence of professional counseling dispositions and behaviors; professional oral and written communication; record keeping; and task completion.

Location Offered

Greenbelt, MD

Program Director:

Sophia Ogunlana, EdD

Dr. Sophia A. Ugunlana is a native Marylander who is married and has two children.  She holds a Bachelor’s in Psychology with a concentration in Mental Health and a minor in Religion from High Point University, and is a proud alumna of Capital Bible Seminary.  She also holds a Master’s in Christian Counseling and a Doctorate in Counseling Psychology with a concentration in Counselor Education and Supervision from Argosy University.  Dr. Ogunlana completed an internship with the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) where she worked with patients with a childhood onset of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections (P.A.N.D.A.S.).  She has presented locally and nationally (Johns Hopkins University, Bowie State University, NIMH, the Art Institute of Washington, and American Association of Behavioral and Social Sciences) on the following topics: Women and Minorities Issues, and the Role of Father Involvement; Rates of Rheumatic Fever in the Families of Patients with P.A.N.D.A.S./Sydenham’s Chorea; Thriving and Surviving a Doctoral Counseling Program; and Transitioning from a Master’s to Doctoral Counseling Program.  As a co-author of Selecting and Surviving a Doctoral Program in Counseling, she seeks to further research and find sources for counseling students.  She is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) and has served in the mental health field for many years. 


Resident Faculty:

Sophia A. Ogunlana, EdD

Gary L. Troxell, EdD


Adjunct Faculty:

Matthew W. Bonner, PhD

Anita Graham-Phillips, PhD

Kevin Jackson, PhD

Linda E. Mouzon, PhD


Program Information

Curricular Structure

The Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health – Maryland program consists of 60 credits. The curriculum is designed as follows:

1st Tier Foundation Courses 12 Credits
2nd Tier Foundation Courses 24 Credits
Advanced Courses 15 Credits
Professional Practice Courses 9 Credits
Program Total 60 Credits

1st Tier Foundation Courses (12 Credits)

Must be taken first as part of the Preliminary Acceptance Phase:

GPC 501Orientation to Professional Counseling Identity, Function & Ethics


GPC 510Human Growth and Development Across the Lifespan


GPC 530Professional Ethics and Legal Issues in Counseling


GPC 583Multicultural Foundations of Counseling


2nd Tier Foundation Courses (24 Credits)

Require Candidacy Phase acceptance or Advisor approval

GPC 505Research and Program Evaluation


GPC 508Counseling Skills in Helping Relationships


GPC 515Counseling Theory and Techniques


GPC 517Biopsychology


GPC 525Assessment Techniques in Counseling


GPC 531Psychopathology & Counseling


GPC 541Group Counseling Leadership Skills


GPC 588Career and Lifestyle Development


Advanced Courses (15 Credits)

Can be taken only after being granted Candidacy and completing the 2nd Tier Professional Courses or by Advisor approval.

GPC 545Marriage & Family Counseling


GPC 555Advanced Techniques of Counseling


GPC 565Clinical Mental Health Counseling


GPC 572Counseling Addictions


GPC 585Trauma-Informed Counseling


Professional Practice Courses (9 Credits)

Require a minimum of 18 credit hours, a GPA > 3.0, and Advisor approval.

GPC 601Counseling Practicum


GPC 602Counseling Internship I


GPC 603Counseling Internship II


Admission Criteria and Application Process

The CMHC-MD Program seeks applicants who meet the following prerequisite criteria:

* An undergraduate degree from an institution accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

* An undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale

* Six (6) credit hours of undergraduate psychology-related courses

* Thirty (30) undergraduate or nine (9) graduate credit hours of Bible coursework.

Exceptions to the GPA and psychology-related course requirements are considered on a case-by-case basis. Applicants not meeting the Bible course requirement can take Bible courses during the program if granted admission.

The application process for the CMHC-MD program has four phases: Initial Application Phase (IAP), Interview phase (IP), Preliminary Acceptance Phase (PAP), and Candidacy Phase (CP).

Initial Application Phase requirements, including those specific to the CMHC-MD program, are as follows:

* Online Master’s Degree Application Form

* Autobiographical Essay addressing the applicant’s spiritual journey, spiritual disciplines, and vocational goals.

* Two professional references (completed by a supervisor, former professor, etc.)

* One spiritual reference completed by the applicant’s pastor

* Official transcripts from each undergraduate and graduate institution attended

* Application fee

Upon review of initial application materials, qualified applicants will be contacted by the Program to arrange an in-person interview. During the Interview Phase, each applicant meets with a Program faculty member. This extensive interview, which lasts up to two hours, is comprised of conversation, role-plays, and an on-site writing assessment. Following the interview, an admission decision is made. Applicants are notified of the results within two weeks.

Preliminary Acceptance Phase

Applicants who succeed in the Interview Phase enter the Preliminary Acceptance Phase. This phase provides provisional acceptance to the CMHC-MD program. During the PAP, the new MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling student must display academic fitness by earning a grade of B or higher in each of the first four courses.

In addition to academic fitness requirements, Instructors will observe and rate each student on various interpersonal and professional fitness standards. Near or upon completion of the fourth course the student will meet with their Advisor to review their PAP performance. Students falling below expectations can be dismissed from the program. An individual remediation plan tailored to the student’s growth needs may also be considered. Failure to satisfy remediation plan requirements will result in dismissal. Successful PAP students may apply to the Candidacy Phase.

Candidacy Phase (CP)

The Candidacy Phase application requires two assessments, background checks, and an online training to ensure the student’s socio-emotional and behavioral fitness for the profession. The assessments (MMPI-2 and 16PF) are to be taken no later than the semester following successful completion of the PAP. Test results will be interpreted collaboratively by full-time faculty. Required background checks and online training are as follows:

  1. Individual State and/or County Background Check
  2. FBI Identity History Summary Check
  3. Child Protective Services (CPS) Background Clearance
  4. Baltimore Child Abuse Center (BCAC) Online Mandated Reporter Training

Once all information is received, the student will be interviewed by a full-time faculty member. Following the Candidacy Interview, recommendations germane to findings are generated. Outcomes include but are not limited to:

* Formal approval as socio-emotionally, academically, and behaviorally fit for advancement to Candidacy.

* Provisionally fit for Candidacy IF various recommendations are followed

* Temporary hiatus from additional classes until requirements have been satisfactorily fulfilled.

* Unfit for candidacy and dismissal from the program.

Statute of Limitation: All CMHC-MD program requirements are to be completed within five years of PAP matriculation. Any petition to extend the statute of limitation due to special circumstances must be submitted to the Program Director by the student.