Why do I need to get certified?

Certification in the fields of alcohol and drug counseling, co-occurring disorders, prevention, clinical supervision, and criminal justice is designed to establish policies and procedures that help protect the citizens of Minnesota by ensuring that certified professionals working in a wide range of professions are providing safe and competent services to the public.

Certification is designed to:

  • Assure the public that a minimum level of competency for quality service has been met by certified professionals
  • Provide a method whereby the highest professional standards can be established, maintained, and updated
  • Increase professional respect and recognition
  • Enhance the role of the professional
  • Assure an opportunity for ongoing professional development
  • Promote a diverse workforce through career ladders
  • Promote professional and ethical practice by enforcing adherence to a Code of Ethics
  • Provide recourse for clients who may have been treated incompetently or unethically by a certified professional




Certifications mark professionals who are specialists in the field.  Employers may use certification as a measure in considering advancement/promotions.  Some employers consider certification in hiring decisions and request certification upon employment.

Certification may provide you with greater recognition by employers.  In tough job markets, certification might give you the edge over the competition.  Consider seeking certifications in a variety of specialty areas that you are qualified for to demonstrate a wide skill set.

When certified at the reciprocal level, you enjoy the benefit of being able to easily transfer your credential to other IC&RC boards that recognize the same credential.  Greater mobility can increase job opportunities.

Certification does have limitations:  It does not guarantee quality and integrity by itself.  It does, however, unite and set direction for professional responsibility and growth.