ACCEPT Program

The ACCEPT Program is the Addictions Counseling Certificate Experiential Paraprofessional Training Program at Kent State University. It is an enhancement of the Addictions Counseling Certificate Program (ACCP), providing additional experiential training and financial support to a select number of KSU undergraduate students enrolled in the ACCP.

The ACCEPT Program is a Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training Program funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA; Grant # 1 M01HP42441‐01‐00), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services administration. (Total HRSA award to KSU for 4 years is $1,598,289; 60% of which is dedicated to student support.)

The ACCEPT Program at KSU began September 2021 and will continue until at least August 2025. A total of 104 KSU undergraduate students will benefit from the ACCEPT Program over its first 4 years. Students eligible for the ACCEPT Program are those who begin the undergraduate/post-secondary Addictions Counseling Certificate Program (ACCP) in either the Fall semester or the Spring semester and commit to completing the ACCP in 12 months, including completing a 4-credit hour and a minimum of 315 clock hours of supervised practicum at an approved behavioral health organization in Northeast Ohio.

The majority of ACCEPT Program Trainees are Psychology majors. All of the Trainees are preparing to work as addictions counselors.

Year 1 of the ACCEPT Program (2021-22) graduated 17 Trainees, 10 of whom are now employed in the behavioral health field. Employment locations for Year 1 ACCEPT Trainees include Townhall II in Kent, Hitchcock Center for Women in Cleveland, MetroHealth Medical Center’s Office of Opioid Safety in Cleveland, and Meridian Healthcare in Youngstown.

There are currently 17 ACCEPT Program Trainees in Year 2 (2022-23). They began Fall 2022 and will complete their addictions counseling practicum and the ACCP by August 2023.

Applications for a new group of Year 2b ACCEPT Program Trainees are underway. This group will begin Spring 2023 and will commit to completing the ACCP by December 2023. KSU students interested in the ACCEPT Program and wish to be considered for January – December 2023 can apply here: ACCEPT Program Year 2b Application, or scan the QR code below

ACCEPT program application QR code








Each KSU ACCEPT Program Trainee receives the following benefits:

  • $3,000 toward tuition/fees
  • $5,000 stipend during practicum
  • Training in cultural humility, trauma-informed care, and working with families
  • Extensive training and certification in telehealth service provision, offered by, a leader in telehealth training
  • Participation in client simulation practice activities/encounters conducted live/on-ground in The Counseling Center (325 White Hall, Kent campus) and online/asynchronously, including a simulated case conference
  • Career mentoring provided by a graduate student Research Assistant, including resume revision and participating in mock employment interviews
  • Placement in a 13- or 15-week addictions counseling practicum (Fall, Spring, or Summer term) for a minimum of 315 clock hours of supervised practice at a facility in Northeast Ohio that offers integrated health services (behavioral health and primary care)
  • Free life-time subscription to Tevera, a digital portfolio/software package to track all practicum field hours and progress toward licensure as a chemical dependency counselor in Ohio

ACCEPT in the News

The ACCEPT Program is coordinated by five faculty investigators:

Dr. Cynthia Osborn

Dr. Cynthia Osborn, Principal Investigator (PI) and Project Director
Professor, Counselor Education and Supervision


Pic of Joel Hughes, PhD

Dr. Joel Hughes, Co-PI
Professor, Psychological Sciences


Cassie Storlie Headshot

Dr. Cassie Storlie, Co-Investigator
Associate Professor, Counselor Education and Supervision


Dr. Kelly Cichy Headshot

Dr. Kelly Cichy, Co-Investigator
Associate Professor, Human Development and Family Studies


William V. Lechner

Dr. William (Bill) Lechner, Co-Investigator
Assistant Professor, Psychological Sciences

Two master’s students in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CMHC) program are serving as ACCEPT Program Research Assistants for 2022-23:

Jennifer Andio graduated from the University of Akron with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Jennifer decided to continue her education and is currently earning a master’s degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling here at Kent State University.  

Jennifer Andio

Jennifer Andio







Jordan Frederick received her bachelor's degree in accounting at The University of Akron and is currently a graduate student in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program at Kent State University.

Jordan Frederick

Jordan Frederick

The ACCEPT Program is fortunate to have the following behavioral health and primary care organizations as community clinical partners (and serving as practicum sites for ACCEPT Program Trainees):

2021-2022 ACCEPT Trainees

  • MaryLouise Bowers (Kent Campus)
  • Olivia Coontz (Kent Campus)
  • Trinity Delade (Kent Campus)
  • Isabella DeMalio (Trumbull Campus)
  • Matthew Famiano (Kent Campus)
  • Miranda Fedor (Kent Campus)
  • Karen Fritz (Trumbull Campus)
  • Bo Hall (Kent Campus)
  • Alicia Irizarry (Kent Campus)
  • Allison James (Kent Campus)
  • Mackenzie King (Kent Campus)
  • Ashley Kozma (Kent Campus)
  • Jessica Nevinski (Trumbull Campus)
  • Estella Rhinehart (Trumbull Campus)
  • Samantha Sarley (Kent Campus)
  • Gabrielle Shives (Trumbull Campus)
  • Annberlyne Vaughn (Trumbull Campus)
  • Heather Vercher (Trumbull Campus)
  • Taylor Volovar (Kent Campus)
  • Abigail Ward (Stark Campus)
  • Alysha Ziemba (Kent Campus)

View Overview of Addictions Counseling Practicum for ACCEPT Trainees (pdf)