Behavioral Health Apprenticeships

The Health Care Apprenticeship Consortium will begin offering three new Behavioral Health apprenticeship programs in Fall 2022.
The Need 

In 2020, more than 22% of Washingtonian adults reported having some kind of mental illness.

And 25% of them reported not being able to access care. 

The ongoing national behavioral healthcare crisis has illuminated the need for: 

  • A qualified, committed, and skilled professional workforce: Behavioral health needs have skyrocketed as a result of the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic, and our healthcare systems are struggling to meet this demand. As a result, people are waiting too long to access services. 
  • A diversified workforce: Many patients are unable to receive effective care from healthcare professionals who adequately understand their life experiences, speak their language, or have contextual knowledge of their unique social situations. 


A Practical Solution 

The Behavioral Healthcare Apprenticeship Program is a registered statewide apprenticeship program that directly responds to this need and aims to: promote accessibility to services, build a pathway of skilled and diverse candidates, and stabilize the behavioral health workforce through increased employee motivation and retention.

This innovative program offers three career pathways to address specific areas of concern:

  • Behavioral Health Technician: 1 year program
  • Peer Counselor: 1 year program
  • Substance Use Disorder Professional: 2 year program

Click below for occupational overviews of each apprenticeship program, details about limited employer-incentive funding for early employer applicants, and more:

Behavioral Health Technician Apprenticeship overview
Peer Counselor Apprenticeship overview
Substance Use Disorder Professional Apprenticeship overview

Have a question about our apprenticeship programs? Please visit our FAQs page.

I don’t have to worry about missing school to go to work. I’m still doing my regular job at the same time. It was an easy transition into going to school as well with this program. I’m grateful for this opportunity and all who are involved with the apprenticeship program. Without this program, I wouldn’t be able to follow my ideal career path.

Malissa Kautz

SUDP Apprentice, Fall 2022 cohort