About the Pennsylvania Counseling Association


As a State Branch of the American Counseling Association, the Pennsylvania Counseling Association (PCA) promotes and supports the competent, ethical, and culturally inclusive practice of professional counseling in Pennsylvania and protects and advocates for all counselors and the clients we serve.

PCA strives:

  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 vision of the PCA is to represent all professional counselors of the Commonwealth in the continued development of professional identity through advocacy, legislative action, and servant leadership.

PCA is:

  • a vibrant state professional association, with regional chapters, 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, board certification, 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.

All PCA activities and programs are conducted in accordance with the Bylaws PCA August 2019 Revisions, 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.