Jaci Settje, transitional living specialist in Memphis, recently earned her LPC-MHSP (licensed professional counselor-mental health service provider) designation.
Licensure has always been the primary goal of Settje’s counseling career.
“I feel like I am promoting the professionalism of the counseling field by choosing to pursue my license as the field is still working toward being noticed in many areas of the country,” she said.
Youth Villages was able to help Settje reach her goal of earning her license. To earn her license, she needed to complete an accredited graduate program and complete a total of 60 graduate credits, including a 250-hour practicum and a 500-hour internship. She also needed to pass four exams and complete a minimum of 1,500 direct contact hours, 1,500 hours of other counseling-related work and 150 hours of licensure supervision. Clinical Services Supervisor Michelle Childs oversaw the licensure process for Settje.
“Jaci was very committed to the licensure process and very ambitious. Despite any work challenges she had, she always made sure she came to supervision and studied for all of the licensure exams,” Childs said. “She managed to get her license in a short time—just over two years. Sometimes it’s hard to add things into an already overbooked schedule, but she did it. She wanted the license and the extra clinical knowledge to be the best counselor possible to the youth she serves.”
Licensure will help Settje as she continues her dream of working with children and families.
“I love the difference I am able to make in the lives of the youth I have worked with and their families. While in graduate school, I was asked, ‘What do you want to do with your counseling career?’ My response was always that I wanted to work with youth and their families to make their lives better together,” she said. “When I found Youth Villages during my job search, I knew it was the right organization for me.”
Settje began working for Youth Villages in January 2011 on the Bartlett Campus. She has worked in her current role as transitional living specialist since March 2014.
“In the transitional living program, some of the young adults I work with have their own children. I guess in a way, I am promoting the relationship between parents and their children for the next generation,” she said.
Settje holds a master’s degree in counseling and psychology in education and bachelor’s degrees in alcohol and drug studies, psychology and American Indian studies from the University of South Dakota.