Resume

Counselor Resume Example & Writing Guide

Use this Counselor resume example and guide to improve your career and write a powerful resume that will separate you from the competition.

If you’re passionate about helping people and want a career where you can make a difference in people’s lives, becoming a counselor might be right up your alley. Counselors are highly trained professionals who provide guidance and support to individuals and families when they’re facing challenging situations. They’re skilled at listening carefully and asking thought-provoking questions that help people identify their problems and develop solutions that work for them.

As a counselor, you might work with people who are coping with mental health issues like depression or anxiety. Or you could help individuals who are struggling with addiction or other behavioral issues. Or maybe you’d like to help families navigate divorce or family problems. Whatever the case may be, counselors are here to help people make sense of their lives and figure out how to move forward with confidence.

Here are some tips and an example resume to help you write a fantastic counselor resume that hiring managers will love.

David Moore
New York City, NY | (123) 456-7891 | [email protected]
Summary

Licensed professional counselor with more than 10 years of experience helping people through difficult life transitions. Specializes in working with adolescents and young adults, and has a deep understanding of the challenges faced by those in the LGBTQ+ community. Passionate about mental health education and advocating for social justice.

Education
Columbia University Jun '10
M.S. in Mental Health Counseling
Barnard College Jun '06
B.A. in Psychology
Experience
Company A, Counselor Jan '17 – Current
  • Assessed and evaluated clients’ needs, strengths, and limitations in order to develop individualized treatment plans.
  • Provided counseling services for a variety of issues including but not limited to: substance abuse, domestic violence, sexual assault, depression/anxiety, grief/loss, relationship problems, parenting skills training etc.
  • Facilitated groups such as anger management or relapse prevention that focused on specific behavioral goals within the context of recovery from addiction.
  • Participated in case planning with clients and other professionals involved in the client’s care (e.g., physicians).
  • Maintained appropriate documentation regarding all aspects of each client’s treatment plan and progress toward identified goals using standardized forms and procedures required by agency policy and procedure manual guidelines.
Company B, Counselor Jan '12 – Dec '16
  • Assisted clients in identifying and reaching their goals by providing individual counseling, group counseling, and workshops
  • Provided crisis intervention services to individuals experiencing a mental health emergency or suicidal ideation
  • Collaborated with other counselors on case management of high-risk patients requiring intensive care
  • Conducted risk assessments for all new clients as part of the initial intake process
  • Supervised interns and junior counselors while maintaining an active caseload of 10+ clients
Company C, Mental Health Technician Jan '09 – Dec '11
  • Assessed patients for the need of psychotropic medications, conducted therapy sessions and assisted doctors with treatment plans.
  • Observed patient’s behavior to determine if there is a change in their condition which can be reported to physician immediately.
  • Collected blood samples from patients and documented case reports accurately as instructed by physicians and health care professionals.
Certifications
  • Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)
  • National Certified Counselor (NCC)
  • Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CCMHC)
Skills

Industry Knowledge: Psychotherapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Client Relations, Self-Help Groups, Medication, Suicide Prevention, Addictions
Technical Skills: Community Mental Health Center, State Mental Health Agency, Psychiatric Hospital, Outpatient Clinic, Crisis Hotline
Soft Skills: Communication, Empathy, Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, Conflict Resolution, Leadership, Teamwork

How to Write a Counselor Resume

Here’s how to write a counselor resume of your own.

Write Compelling Bullet Points

Bullet points are the most important part of your resume because they’re the only thing hiring managers will read. So it’s crucial that you use them to your advantage by crafting compelling bullet points that highlight your experience, skills, and accomplishments.

The best way to do this is to focus on the results of your work. So rather than saying you “provided counseling services to clients,” you could say you “provided counseling services to 20 clients with a history of violent behavior, resulting in a decrease in violent incidents from 2 per month to 0.”

The second bullet point paints a much clearer picture of the project and its outcome. And it provides a quantifiable result—a 20% decrease in violent incidents—that makes it easy for the reader to understand how impressive this accomplishment is.

Related: What Is a Counselor? How to Become One

Identify and Include Relevant Keywords

Applicant tracking systems (ATS) are used by most companies to help screen resumes. When you submit your resume online, the ATS will scan it for specific keywords related to the job opening. If your resume doesn’t have enough of the right terms, the system might not rank it high enough for a recruiter to see it.

The best way to make sure your resume contains the right keywords is to read through the job posting and take note of the terms that are used most frequently. Then, use those same terms throughout your resume. Here are some common counselor keywords to get you started:

  • Counseling
  • Mental Health
  • Psychology
  • Group Therapy
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Mental Health Counseling
  • Community Outreach
  • Social Services
  • Program Development
  • Case Management
  • Life Coaching
  • Case Management
  • Nonprofit Organizations
  • Youth Work
  • Behavioral Health
  • Behavioral Health Care
  • Motivational Interviewing
  • Working with Adolescents
  • Psychotherapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Event Planning
  • Public Speaking
  • Research
  • Teamwork
  • Teaching
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Communication
  • Leadership
  • Microsoft Access
  • Time Management

Showcase Your Technical Skills

As counselors, we use a variety of technology tools to communicate with our clients. We also use technology to research different topics that are relevant to our work. So, it’s important that we list our technical skills on our resumes.

Some of the most commonly used technology tools by counselors include:

Counseling software, like TheraPro or Proloquo2Go Google Drive Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) Dropbox Facebook Twitter

Related: How Much Does a Counselor Make?

Remember The Basics

As you write your resume, it’s important to keep a few basic rules in mind.

Create Easy-to Scan Sections

There are a few things you can do to make your resume easier to read and understand quickly. Aligning everything to the left, using a standard font type and size, and keeping bullets under 2 lines will help make your resume more skimmable. You should also try to leave some white space on the page to help the recruiter easily scan through your information.

Be Concise

ideally, a resume should only be one page long, but if you have a lot of experience to include, it can be two pages. When trimming down a resume, remove unnecessary information, such as personal details or hobbies. font type and size, margins, and line spacing can also be tweaked to save space on a resume.

Proofread

Proofreading your resume is an essential step in ensuring that it looks its best. There are a few key things to watch for when proofreading: spelling mistakes, punctuation mistakes, and grammatical mistakes. It is also important to be aware of easily confused words. Spell-checking your resume is a good way to catch mistakes, but it is important to have someone else read it over as well.

Consider a Summary

There are a few key reasons why you might want to consider using a resume summary statement. First, it can be a great way to put your past experience and future goals in context, giving potential employers a better sense of who you are and what you’re looking to do next. Additionally, well-written summaries can help to highlight your most relevant skills and experiences, making you stand out from the competition. Finally, they can act as a valuable introduction to your resume, providing recruiters with a snapshot of your qualifications and experience without having to read through the entire document. If you’re looking to make a strong first impression, a well-crafted summary statement is a great way to do it.

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