6 Month Full-time Certificate Program

Community Mental Health Worker Students

This full-time credit program is recognized as a qualification for employment for mental health worker positions within the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA). As part of a multi-disciplinary team providing client-focused treatment and rehabilitation, Community Mental Health Workers can choose to work in a variety of institutional, residential and community settings.

Career Opportunities:

As part of a multi-disciplinary team providing client-focused treatment and rehabilitation, Community Mental Health Workers can choose to work in a variety of institutional, residential and community settings.

Further Educational Opportunities::

CMHW Graduates can apply academic credits from the CMHW program towards application requirements for VIU’s Bachelor of Social Work program. Please note only 3-credit courses are applicable.

Program Content:

This program consists of the following courses:

  • Community Mental Health Worker I
  • Community Mental Health Worker II
  • Building Therapeutic Relationships
  • Addictions and Mental Health Issues
  • Support Strategies
  • Practice Issues
  • Personal Care
  • Practicum

Course Delivery:

Courses are offered on a full-time basis over two semesters.  Classes are typically four days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.. 

Practicum placements occur during the final six weeks of the course and are full-time @ 35-40 hrs / week.  Practicums are typically during the week although some placements may involve weekend and evening shifts.

Admission Requirements:

The following requirements must be met for entry to the program:

If you do not meet the prerequisites, please contact Student Assessment and Exam Invigilation Services, located at Nanaimo, Cowichan and Powell River, to arrange your assessments.

Proof of successful completion of the following is required in order to participate in the practicum.  It is strongly recommended you complete as much as you can before the start of the program.   

  • Nonviolent Crisis Intervention Seminar (HHNS 010) or equivalent
  • Standard First Aid with Level "C" CPR
  • Foodsafe Certificate
  • Immunizations (Hepatitis B, MMR, Flu, Negative TB screen, Tetanus & Diphtheria, Polio, Chickenpox (Varicella), and Flu Vaccine) - download form here: immunization_requirements.pdf
  • Criminal Record Check - requested through VIU (a special form is provided to all CMHW applicants from Registration).  May take up to 6 weeks to process.
  • HSPnet Consent - download form here: HSPnet_Student_Consent_form.pdf.  Please note students who have a previous relationship with VIHA (i.e., a VIHA email address) must let us know. 

ADMISSIONS UPDATE (Sept 10, 2018):  We may be able to accept late applications from students who have evidence of meeting all admission requirements plus full funding in place so that all tuition and fees are paid before the start of the program.  Please contact Admissions Assistant Carine.Hutchinson@viu.ca if you are interested.

Important Dates*:

Admissions Open / Applications Accepted January 11, 2018
Application & Document Deadline** September 10, 2018
Registration Deadline & Non-refundable $200 Tuition Deposit Due Within 3 weeks of admission offer
Balance of Tuition Due September 11, 2018
Last Day to Withdraw (no refunds will be issued after this date) September 11, 2018
Program Start October 9, 2018
Program End April 6, 2019

* Dates are subject to change

** Late applications may be accepted if there is still room in the program 

Program Fees***:

Tuition: $7723.05

Student Activity and VIU Union Fees: Approximately $300.00

Textbooks: Approximately $650.00

 *** Tuition and Fees subject to final approval

This program is eligible for students loans.  For more information, please see Student Financial Aid & Awards

Graduation Requirements:

Students must successfully complete all seven courses and the practica in the program.

Students are required to attend all scheduled lectures, observations, examinations and practicum hours or may not qualify to receive the program certificate.

How to Apply:

APPLY ONLINE or by using a  paper application for admission.  An application fee is required.

Program Contact:

Deirdre Godwin, Program Assistant

Professional Development and Training (H&HS)

Phone: 250.740.6322

Email: Deirdre.Godwin@viu.ca 

Revised September 10, 2018

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