Higher education is required for a fast-growing counseling career

Students who earn a master's degree can enter the fast-growing counseling field.
Students who earn a master's degree can enter the fast-growing counseling field.

A Boston Globe report on the 30 fastest-growing careers reveals that students who complete higher education and become counselors, particularly those that specialize in substance abuse and behavioral disorders, should see a booming job market.

Individuals who enter this field help people who are struggling with alcohol, drugs, eating disorders, gambling and other problems. Counselors work to help their patients identify their behaviors and find solutions for their addictions, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Counselors in general should see an 18 percent increase in employment opportunities, the BLS reports. As people become more knowledgeable about addiction and other problems, substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors in particular will see a 21 percent increase in job opportunities.

As each state has its own regulations for certifications and licensure, the exact amount of higher education a counselor needs will vary. However, the BLS states that most professionals are required to earn a master's degree in the discipline.

Many individuals who are substance abuse counselors also have a great deal of experience. PayScale reports that 44 percent of these professionals have been working in the field for more than five years.

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