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Career and Education Opportunities for Substance Abuse Specialists in North Carolina

North Carolina has a population of 9,380,884, which has grown by 16.54% over the past 10 years. Nicknamed the "Tar Heel State," its capital is Raleigh, though its most populous city is Charlotte.

There are currently 1,160 working substance abuse specialists in North Carolina; this should grow by 48% to 1,720 working substance abuse specialists in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for substance abuse specialists, which sees this job pool growing by about 21.0% over the next eight years. In general, substance abuse specialists counsel and advise individuals with alcohol, tobacco, or other problems, such as gambling and eating disorders.

Substance abuse specialists earn approximately $18 hourly or $39,210 per year on average in North Carolina. Nationally they average about $17 per hour or $37,030 annually. Earnings for substance abuse specialists are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Counseling and Therapy in North Carolina and not quite as good as general Counseling and Therapy category earnings nationally. Substance abuse specialists work in a variety of jobs, including: behavioral specialist, certified alcohol counselor, and addictions counselor.

In 2008, there were a total of 5,497,808 jobs in North Carolina. The average annual income was $35,249 in 2008, up from $34,865 the previous year. The unemployment rate in North Carolina was 10.6% in 2009, which has grown by 4.4% since the previous year. Roughly 22.5% of North Carolina residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in North Carolina include beverage product manufacturing, tobacco manufacturing, and pharmaceutical preparation manufacturing. Notable tourist attractions include the Charlotte Museum of History, the McGill Rose Garden, and the Discovery Place & the Charlotteservr IMX DME Thtre.

CITIES WITH Substance Abuse Specialist OPPORTUNITIES IN North Carolina


JOB DESCRIPTION: Substance Abuse Specialist

Substance Abuse Specialist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, substance abuse specialists counsel and advise individuals with alcohol, tobacco, or other problems, such as gambling and eating disorders. They also may counsel individuals, families, or groups or engage in prevention programs.

Every day, substance abuse specialists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in North Carolina include:

  • Career Advisor. Counsel individuals and provide group educational and vocational guidance services.
  • Child and Family Services Worker. Provide social services and assistance to improve the social and psychological functioning of children and their families and to maximize the family well-being and the academic functioning of children. May assist single parents, arrange adoptions, and find foster homes for abandoned or abused children. In schools, they address such problems as teenage pregnancy, misbehavior, and truancy. May also advise teachers on how to deal with problem children.
  • Health Education Specialist. Promote, maintain, and improve individual and community health by assisting individuals and communities to adopt healthy behaviors. Collect and analyze data to identify community needs prior to planning, implementing, and evaluating programs designed to encourage healthy lifestyles, policies and environments. May also serve as a resource to assist individuals, other professionals, or the community, and may administer fiscal resources for health education programs.
  • Marriage and Family Therapist. Diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders, whether cognitive, or behavioral, within the context of marriage and family systems. Apply psychotherapeutic and family systems theories and techniques in the delivery of professional services to individuals, couples, and families for the purpose of treating such diagnosed nervous and mental disorders.
  • Mental Health Counselor. Counsel with emphasis on prevention. Work with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental health. May help individuals deal with addictions and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; suicide; stress management; problems with self-esteem; and issues associated with aging and mental and emotional health.
  • Rehabilitation Counselor. Counsel individuals to maximize the independence and employability of persons coping with personal, social, and vocational difficulties that result from birth defects, illness, or the stress of daily life. Coordinate activities for residents of care and treatment facilities. Assess client needs and design and implement rehabilitation programs that may include personal and vocational counseling, training, and job placement.
  • Social Services Assistant. Assist professionals from a wide variety of fields, such as psychology, rehabilitation, or social work, to provide client services, as well as support for families. May assist clients in identifying available benefits and social and community services and help clients obtain them. May assist social workers with developing, organizing, and conducting programs to prevent and resolve problems relevant to substance abuse, human relationships, or adult daycare.

LOCATION INFORMATION: North Carolina

North Carolina
North Carolina photo by Jan van der Crabben

North Carolina has a population of 9,380,884, which has grown by 16.54% over the past 10 years. Nicknamed the "Tar Heel State," its capital is Raleigh, though its most populous city is Charlotte. In 2008, there were a total of 5,497,808 jobs in North Carolina. The average annual income was $35,249 in 2008, up from $34,865 the preceding year. The unemployment rate in North Carolina was 10.6% in 2009, which has grown by 4.4% since the previous year. Approximately 22.5% of North Carolina residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in North Carolina include beverage product manufacturing, tobacco manufacturing, and pharmaceutical preparation manufacturing. Notable tourist destinations include the Mint Hill Country Doctors Museum, the Levine Museum of the New South, and the McGill Rose Garden.