MFT Degrees, Schools, and Careers in Wyoming
In Wyoming, there are a grand total of 12 colleges or universities and only 7 or 8 of those are four-year, degree-granting institutions. It should be pretty clear from that statistic that Marriage and Family Therapy degrees are few and far between in Wyoming. In fact, according to the two primary MFT accrediting bodies, there are exactly zero accredited MFT degree programs offered by schools in Wyoming. Neither the Commission on Accreditation of Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) or the Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) show any accredited MFT-specific degree programs available.
Wyoming is very explicit on its education requirements for licensure. According to state law, applicants for MFT licensure in Wyoming must first earn a graduate degree from a program accredited by either the COAMFTE or CACREP. They do allow for two exceptions. The first is if the MFT degree in question was earned at a school accredited by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), or if the program is "substantially similar" in content and curriculum to programs accredited by either COAMFTE or CACREP. What does this mean for aspiring applicants? It means that if they want to be safe, they should attend a CACREP or COAMFTE-accredited program that will likely have to be outside of Wyoming. If they want to take their chances, there will almost certainly be more proof required and hoops to jump through, but there are alternative routes to earning MFT licensure in Wyoming.
This also means that some clinical health counseling degree programs may also help an applicant qualify for licensure. But remember, these programs are clinical mental health counseling programs that may have plenty of overlapping curriculum with what is required by Wyoming but that's not a guarantee.
Of course there is only one school in Wyoming that even offers a accredited clinical mental health counseling degree and that school is the state's flagship university -- the University of Wyoming. The school actually offers three different accredited counseling degrees and each program may feature curriculum that overlaps with what is required for MFT licensure, but be sure to check with the school before you commit to a decision.
Online MFT Degrees in Wyoming
Students committed to staying in Wyoming aren't entirely without options. There are schools out there offering online degrees in the subject but there are just five that offer accredited online programs. Capella University and Northcentral University are both accredited by the COAMFTE and while Capella only offers an online Master's MFT degree, Northcentral offers two types of degrees, a Master’s degree in MFT and a PhD in the subject.
Messiah College in Pennsylvania offers a specific online Master's track in MFT and Regent University in Virginia Beach also offers a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy online. Both programs are explicitly designed to prepare students for the LMFT exam and for professional licensure. The same is true for the program at Walden University, although the school offers something slightly different -- a Master’s of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. These three programs are accredited by CACREP only.
There are also a number of for-profit universities that offer online MFT degrees. Be careful before applying though as only some will help you qualify for licensure.
Read more about MFT degrees online.
MFT Accreditation in Wyoming
There are two widely accepted accrediting bodies for Marriage and Family Therapists -- the COAMFTE and CACREP. It is important to note that not all CACREP-accredited programs are specifically designed to prepare a student for a licensure in the state. In fact, Wyoming explicitly says that applicants must earn a Master's degree or a PhD from a COAMFTE or CACREP-accredited school in order to even qualify for licensure.
It does allow for other regionally accredited programs that are accredited by CHEA or are substantially similar to the programs and curriculum offered by CACREP and COAMFTE-accredited programs. But this will be tougher to prove however. Accreditation will show employers and other schools that your education met the minimum education standards and that the applicant for licensure has real-world experience in the field.
Career Opportunities for MFTs in Wyoming
Unfortunately, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics has a tough time collecting employment and salary data on jobs in Wyoming and as a result, marriage and family therapists are not even listed in the most recent update of this data by the BLS. But clinical mental health counselors in the state earn an annual average salary of $52,800, which is right around the national average for the profession and roughly $7,000 more than the average salary of all jobs in Wyoming. It is reasonable to assume that most professional MFTs in Wyoming would earn a similar salary.
Marriage and Family Therapists Salary in Wyoming
Table data taken from 2014 BLS (http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes211013.htm)