About PCA

The Pennsylvania Counseling Association is...

  • a vibrant state professional association, with divisions and special interest groups, advocating for professional counselors and their clients in Pennsylvania
  • a strong voice in Harrisburg for legislation affecting professional counseling
  • an authorized provider of continuing education units
  • an association dedicated to promoting accreditation, boardcertification, and state licensure for Pennsylvania’s professional counselors
  • a dynamic network of Pennsylvania professional counselors

The Pennsylvania Counseling Association (PCA) is a state branch of the Washington, DC-based American Counseling Association (ACA), the national professional association that represents the 526,000-plus professional counselors who live and practice here in the United States. The PCA is also a part of the American Counseling Association—North Atlantic Region’s (ACA—NAR) network of state branches, the ACA—NAR being one of four regional chapters of the ACA. The PCA president serves as the association’s official delegate to the ACA-NAR.

As a state branch of the American Counseling Association, the Pennsylvania Counseling Association accepts the responsibility to serve and represent Pennsylvania’s professional counselors by providing leadership and professional development. The purpose of the association is to enhance human development throughout the life span and to promote professional counseling.

  1. To achieve recognition of Pennsylvania professional counselors as providers of mental healthcare in all human service systems and practice settings.
  2. To achieve access to quality mental health services for Pennsylvanians across cultures at all stages of the life span.
  3. To educate Pennsylvanians about the skills and qualifications of professional counselors.
  4. To provide professional development experiences for all professional counselors in Pennsylvania.
  5. To be a resource for state and local government officials and all community leaders who address the mental health needs of their constituents.
  6. To recruit and train a diverse membership, which includes all professional counselors in Pennsylvania, and to involve each of them in carrying out our mission and realizing our vision.
  7. To recruit as members Pennsylvania graduate students of professional counseling, to involve each of them in carrying out our mission and in realizing our vision, to mentor each of them through the transition from graduate student to professional, and to develop each of them as future leaders of our profession.

The Pennsylvania Counseling Association is an organization of professional counselors who value a collegial community, continuous learning, service to others, visionary leadership, and a commitment to professional ethics and standards of practice.

All Pennsylvania Counseling Association (PCA) activities and programs are conducted in accordance with the  By Laws Of The Pennsylvania Counseling Association, as amended and approved by the PCA Executive Council in February 2008, and in accordance with the by-laws of its parent association, the American Counseling Association (ACA). Furthermore, the PCA has adopted the ACA Code of Ethics, last revised and approved by the ACA Governing Council in 2014. PCA members must agree to abide by this code as a condition of membership.

The PCA Executive Council, consisting of five elected officers and the elected presidents of all PCA divisions, special interest groups, and regional chapters, is the policy-making body of the association. PCA Committees, various other appointed officials, and staff implement that policy.