FAQ

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What is the Addiction & Recovery Counseling Certificate?
This is a 31.5-unit California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals (CCAPP) accredited Certificate that will prepare students to work as credentialed counselors in Drug & Alcohol Programs.  This program is designed for working adults, new and returning students. The Addiction & Recovery Counseling Certificate is funded by the San Francisco Department of Public Health /Community Behavioral Health Service (CBHS).

Why is CCAPP Accreditation important?
Accreditation by the California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals is important because the California Department of Alcohol & Drug Programs now requires all Substance Use Disorder counselors to be certified within five years of registering with a certifying organization.

What do Substance Use Disorder Counselors do?
Substance Use Disorder counselors perform many duties of which the following are but a few: provide clinical evaluations, develop treatment plans, provide referrals, coordinate client-centered services, provide individual, group or family counseling and provide community education and outreach.

What kind of job can I get once I complete the program?
Substance Use Disorder counselors work in variety arenas such as:  inpatient and outpatient treatment programs, residential treatment programs, jail treatment programs, juvenile services, homeless programs, mental health services, harm reduction centered programs, maternal-child health programs, and senior services.

How much will I earn in this career?
The average starting salary for a Substance Use Disorder counselor in San Francisco ranges from $32,000-$50,000 depending on the agency and experience.

How long will the program take?
Part-time students can complete the certificate in 4 semesters. Many students in our program work full time and may take longer to complete the certificate.

Are there prerequisites?
Yes.  Students must take and successfully complete (with a grade of "C" or higher) Health 100: Introduction to Addiction & Recovery Counseling.  This 1-unit course provides an overview of the Addiction & Recovery Counseling field as well as an orientation to the requirements of the CCSF Addiction & Recovery Counseling program.

What is required of me?
This is a vocational training program that requires significant time commitment, discipline, stability, maturity and predictability. As part of the program, you will be required to complete 300 internship hours for CCAPP certification.

When do classes start?
Classes begin every semester.  Refer to City College Class Schedule for specific dates and times. After completing Health 100, classes must be taken sequentially.

How do I enroll? 

  1. Complete the CCSF Application Online or at the Admissions & Records Office. 
  2. Register for class

How to apply to the Addiction & Recovery Counseling (ARC) Program?

  1. Enroll in HLTH 100
  2. Email Eric Lewis, edlewis@ccsf.edu, to schedule an appointment

Where will classes be held?
All classes are held at the Ocean Campus (50 Frida Kahlo Way).

What time of day are classes offered?
Most required classes are held after 5 p.m.*  During the third and fourth semesters, students will be required to complete 300 hours (150 hours x 2 semesters) at an internship site.  For more information, you can obtain a catalog listing and description online by clicking here.

What can I expect to spend?
City College of San Francisco classes are $46 per unit plus a student health and registration fee each semester. (Community College prices are subject to change.) You can expect to spend approximately $2000 for the Certificate program (not counting books).  Extensive financial aid is available to students who qualify (click here for financial aid information).

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Advisory Board: Our advisory board meets annually. Our members are former graduates, current students, employer partners, and CCSF Staff.