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Chemical Dependency Professional

Whatcom Community College offers new certificate and degree programs for students on the path toward certification as a chemical dependency professional (CDP).

Associate in science degree in chemical dependency professional

This associate degree (90-92 credits) prepares students to counsel individuals and families with substance use disorders. This degree is designed to meet the educational requirements for students to become certified as a chemical dependency professional in Washington state. Two specialty options are offered:

General specialty option (90 credits)

Allows students the flexibility to choose elective courses or meet the elective requirement with previously taken courses.

Behavioral health specialty option (92 credits)

Provides additional course content to train students in emerging trends in the behavioral health field. The recommended courses prepare students to work within an integrated healthcare system, with a deeper knowledge of care navigation and topics in psychology or sociology (recommended topic areas identified by local employers).

Certificate in chemical dependency professional

This certificate (65 credits) prepares students to counsel individuals and families with substance use disorders. This certificate is designed to meet the educational requirements for students to become certified as a chemical dependency professional in Washington state. This certificate is for students with a prior degree (associate, bachelor, master).

Certificate of proficiency in chemical dependency professional – alternative training

This entirely online program (15 credits) is designed for licensed professionals under WAC (246-811-076) who are interested in becoming a chemical dependency professional through alternative training. A practitioner must hold an active license in good standing: advanced registered nurse practitioner, marriage and family therapists, mental health counselor, advanced social worker, independent clinical social worker, psychologist, osteopathic physician, osteopathic physician assistant, physician, or physician assistant.

Refer to the Department of Health requirements for full certification.

NAADAC approved education provider_logo

Whatcom Community College has been approved by the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) as an Approved Education Provider to provide the Alternative Training Program for educational credits.

Behavioral health program mission statement

The behavioral health program at Whatcom Community College will contribute to the behavioral health and recovery of individuals, families, and our community by providing innovative education to professionals. The curriculum prepares professionals to treat complex and culturally diverse clients in an integrated healthcare team. Emphasizing a person centered, strengths based approach, this program is grounded in evidence-based research. The program empowers students to maintain high standards of excellence while embodying professional values and ethics.

FAQs

  • What is a chemical dependency professional?
  • Are there additional requirements from the Department of Health for chemical dependency professional credentialing besides educational courses?
  • What are the educational requirements of the Department of Health to become a chemical dependency professional?
  • Who oversees credentialing to become a chemical dependency professional?
  • Can I use previously earned college credits to satisfy the course requirements for either the degree or certificate?
  • Am I eligible for the certificate of proficiency in alternative training?
  • What life experience or training do I need prior to the chemical dependency professional program?
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