Innovators Guide



Counselor Income Data

Median annual wages of educational, vocational, and school counselors in May 2008 were $51,050. The middle 50 percent earned between $38,740 and $65,360. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $29,360, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $82,330. School counselors can earn additional income by working summers in the school system or in other jobs. Median annual wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of educational, vocational, and school counselors were as follows:

Elementary and secondary schools $57,800
Junior colleges 50,440
Colleges, universities, and professional schools 43,980
Vocational rehabilitation services 35,220
Individual and family services 33,780

Median annual wages of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors in May 2008 were $37,030. The middle 50 percent earned between $29,410 and $47,290. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $24,240, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $59,460. Median annual wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors were as follows:

General medical and surgical hospitals $44,130
Local government 41,660
Outpatient care centers 36,650
Individual and family services 35,210
Residential mental retardation, mental health and substance facilities 31,300

Median annual wages of mental health counselors in May 2008 were $36,810. The middle 50 percent earned between $28,930 and $48,580. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $23,580, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $63,100. Median annual wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of mental health counselors were as follows:

Local government $45,510
Offices of other health practitioners 40,880
Outpatient care centers 37,590
Individual and family services 36,130
Residential mental retardation, mental health and substance abuse facilities 29,950

Median annual wages of rehabilitation counselors in May 2008 were $30,930. The middle 50 percent earned between $24,110 and $41,240. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $20,150, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $56,550. Median annual wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of rehabilitation counselors were as follows:

State government $45,350
Local government 38,800
Vocational rehabilitation services 29,060
Individual and family services 28,290
Residential mental retardation, mental health and substance facilities 25,950

Median annual wages of marriage and family therapists in May 2008 were $44,590. The middle 50 percent earned between $34,840 and $56,320. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $27,810, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $70,830. Median annual wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of marriage and family therapists were as follows:

State government $50,770
Local government 48,220
Outpatient care centers 46,830
Offices of other health practitioners 41,220
Individual and family services 39,690

Self-employed counselors who have well-established practices, as well as counselors employed in group practices, usually have the highest earnings.

Source:  Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition

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