The American Counseling Association (ACA) and the American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) are now completely separate associations. It should be well understood that there are many types of counselors nationwide, but AMHCA was the ACA division tasked to support the needs of clinical mental health counselors. Now, AMHCA as a standalone association is the only one that is uniquely dedicated to the academic, internship, supervision, and licensure of clinical mental health counselors. AMHCA supports students, faculty, supervisors, supervised pre-licensed and licensed clinical mental health counseling professionals. As ACA has stated in a recent public release, there was agreement that it was time for the two associations to disaffiliate. ACA and AMHCA will remain sibling associations as we will with other organizations such as NBCC, NASW, NAMI, APA, and more so that we may work on projects of joint importance to the larger behavioral health community.
In the academic community it is of course important for faculty and students to be aware of this change. The need for students to associate themselves early in their careers can be critical to their future as it helps them to feel a sense of identity and to have a voice in decisions that may directly impact their future endeavors. Requests for additional information or materials should be directed to the AMHCA CEO, Mr. Joel Miller, whose email address is email@example.com.
The board members of AMHCA are thrilled to be taking on this new chapter in our association’s history. Given the growth of clinical mental health counseling nationwide, it simply makes sense that mental health counselors have their own association. We remain grateful for the many years of support we received from the ACA and look forward to working with them in the future.