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Career and Education Opportunities for Mental Health Counselors in South Dakota

South Dakota has a population of 812,383, which has grown by 7.62% in the last 10 years. Nicknamed the "Mount Rushmore State," its capital is Pierre, though its most populous city is Sioux Falls.

Currently, 220 people work as mental health counselors in South Dakota. This is expected to grow 34% to about 290 people by 2016. This is better than the national trend for mental health counselors, which sees this job pool growing by about 24.0% over the next eight years. In general, mental health counselors counsel with emphasis on prevention.

The income of a mental health counselor is about $17 hourly or $36,110 yearly on average in South Dakota. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $17 per hour or $36,810 annually on average. Earnings for mental health counselors are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Counseling and Therapy in South Dakota and not quite as good as general Counseling and Therapy category earnings nationally. Jobs in this field include: chemical dependency therapist, therapist, and certified alcohol and drug counselor .

In 2008, there were a total of 566,490 jobs in South Dakota. The average annual income was $38,644 in 2008, up from $36,428 the preceding year. The unemployment rate in South Dakota was 4.8% in 2009, which has grown by 1.7% since the previous year. About 21.5% of South Dakota residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in South Dakota include nonstore retailers, gasoline stations with convenience stores, and sign manufacturing. Notable tourist attractions include the Old Courthouse Museum, the Deals Publications Inc, and the Pettigrew Home & Museum.

CITIES WITH Mental Health Counselor OPPORTUNITIES IN South Dakota


JOB DESCRIPTION: Mental Health Counselor

Mental Health Counselor video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, mental health counselors counsel with emphasis on prevention. They also work with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental health.

Every day, mental health counselors are expected to be able to piece together evidence to, in some sense, diagnose what is going on in a situation. They need to evaluate problems as they arise. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in South Dakota include:

  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Substance Abuse Specialist. Counsel and advise individuals with alcohol, tobacco, or other problems, such as gambling and eating disorders. May counsel individuals, families, or groups or engage in prevention programs.

LOCATION INFORMATION: South Dakota

South Dakota
South Dakota photo by Dean Franklin

South Dakota has a population of 812,383, which has grown by 7.62% in the last 10 years. Nicknamed the "Mount Rushmore State," its capital is Pierre, though its most populous city is Sioux Falls. In 2008, there were a total of 566,490 jobs in South Dakota. The average annual income was $38,644 in 2008, up from $36,428 the previous year. The unemployment rate in South Dakota was 4.8% in 2009, which has grown by 1.7% since the previous year. Roughly 21.5% of South Dakota residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in South Dakota include nonstore retailers, gasoline stations with convenience stores, and sign manufacturing. Notable tourist attractions include the Pettigrew Home & Museum, the Sioux Falls City, and the Old Courthouse Museum.