According to the US Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2012, in the year 2012 there were 22,448,000 veterans living in the United States. The Census compendia also states the total number of veterans living in Maryland in 2010 was 471,000.
According to the US Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2012-2013, employment of mental health counselors is expected to grow by 36 percent from 2010 to 2020, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. Under managed care systems, insurance companies increasingly are providing for reimbursement of counselors as a less costly alternative to psychiatrists and psychologists. In addition, there has been an increased demand for mental health services as individuals become more willing to seek help.
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs in June 2010, out of 593,634 patients treated by the VA, 171,423 deployed Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans were diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The projected number of veterans living in Anne Arundel County for the year 2011 was 58,434. The Annapolis Veterans Center's Mark Chapin reports that approximately 80 percent of veterans returning home now are suffering from readjustment issues. Currently the Annapolis Veterans Center is treating 300 veterans for PTSD.
In addition to PTSD, there is the issue of treating traumatic brain injury (TBI). According to the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, the number of traumatic brain injuries in members of the Department of Defense between the years 2000 and 2012 (second quarter) is 253,330.
The Veterans Counseling certificate is designed for counselors, social workers, and other practicing human service professionals seeking specialized training to meet the unique needs and complex issues of military and veteran populations in the United States. Paraprofessionals looking for entry-level job opportunities also can benefit from the training this certificate offers.