St. Thomas Aquinas College

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Starting Psychology or Counseling Careers at STAC

St. Thomas Aquinas College appears in our ranking of the Top 25 Small Colleges for a Counseling Degree.

The School of Arts & Sciences offers St. Thomas Aquinas College undergrads three traditional human services degrees in Sparkill to launch rewarding efforts that enhance people's well-being from a Catholic worldview. For example, the 39-credit Psychology Major (B.S.) overseen by Dr. Susan Marell trains scientist-practitioners for analyzing behaviors. Since 2007, the 63-credit Therapeutic Recreation Major (B.S.) led by Dr. Linda Levine Madori has achieved job placement over 90 percent for students working with mentally and physically disabled clients. Chaired by Prof. Carol Greiff-Lagstein, the Art Therapy Major (B.S.) has a 51-credit, AATA-approved curricula devoted to the creative expression of emotions. Courses, such as Psych Testing, Intro to Eating Disorders, Developmental Disability, and Gerontology, have a 12:1 student-faculty ratio. Practicum requirements range from 120 to 560 hours at agencies like Northern Manor Rehabilitation, Bergen Medical Center, The Center for Anxiety, and South Orangetown Central Schools. Other opportunities are pursuing the Five-Year Silver School MSW, traveling to Finland, joining Random Acts of Kindness, adding the Autism Certificate, and participating in the Midnight Run.

About St. Thomas Aquinas College

St. Thomas Aquinas College was opened in 1952 by the Dominican Congregation of Our Lady of the Rosary, a Catholic nun order of the Archdiocese of New York. Named after the medieval friar venerated on January 28th for Summa Theologiae, it initially was a teacher training school. Surpassing its 65th year, Aquinas is now a premier private, coed liberal arts ACCU member of the East Coast Conference. Endowed for $49 million, STAC currently enrolls 2,800 Spartans, including Psychology and Therapeutic Recreation B.S. majors, in three schools. St. Thomas Aquinas College occupies 60 acres along Rockland County's Route 340 just 15 miles north of Manhattan with 40+ active campus organizations. Linked to 10,145 LinkedIn alumni, Aquinas has produced Barbara Corcoran, Frank Messina, Craig Zucker, Gordon Chiesa, and others.

The U.S. News & World Report ranked St. Thomas Aquinas the North's 126th best institution with 77 percent retention. On Niche, STAC boasts America's 351st best location, 562nd most valuable tuition, and 575th most liberal academics. The "College of Distinction" lands within Times Higher Education's top 800 overall. WalletHub noticed St. Thomas Aquinas College for the 65th best campus experience and 417th best career outcomes. PayScale recorded a median mid-career salary of $91,700 for STAC grads. College Factual placed Aquinas 394th for male-female diversity with the country's 497th best psychology degree. Washington Monthly named St. Thomas Aquinas College 202nd for community service hours and 338th for graduation rate nationally. Best Counseling Degrees also featured STAC among its top 25 small colleges for undergrad therapy majors.

St. Thomas Aquinas College Accreditation Details

In 2017, St. Thomas Aquinas College successfully passed a self-study review with the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) to keep Level III accreditation valid for eight more years under president Dr. Margaret Fitzpatrick, who received the 2003 Sisters of Charity Elizabeth Seton Award. Based 117 miles south in Philadelphia, this small six-state NYC Metro accreditor is authorized by the U.S. Secretary of Education to evaluate the effectiveness of STAC's 37 baccalaureate, 17 master's, and seven certificate offerings. Aquinas' Art Therapy Major meets the American Art Therapy Association (AATA) standards. Therapeutic Recreation Major courses also fulfill the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation (NCTR) guidelines for CTRS certification.

St. Thomas Aquinas College Application Requirements

Admission to St. Thomas Aquinas College is classified "moderately difficult" on Peterson's because 79 percent of the 1,953 Fall 2017 applicants were triumphant. First-year Spartans aiming for the Bachelor of Science options above need an NYS Regents diploma or other state's equivalent. Earning at least 500 on each section of the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) also qualifies. On average, freshmen hold a 3.01 GPA, 1030 SAT score, and 20 ACT mark. The Honors Program mandates high school averages above 90 and SAT sections over 550 each. Transferring into the Psychology Major (B.S.) requires having 30+ credits remaining for a bachelor's. Non-remedial courses graded "C" or greater would count. International learners with I-20 Certificates of Eligibility need to submit a 500 TOEFL or 65 PTE English score too.

St. Thomas Aquinas College lets undergrads apply every Fall and Spring semester on a rolling, first-come basis. Please note the financial aid priority deadline is February 15th though. Hopeful Psychology, Art Therapy, and Therapeutic Recreation majors can simply file the Common Application online. If necessary, extra materials are mailed to 125 Route 340 in Sparkill, NY 10976. Please contact (945) 398-4100 or [email protected] for further clarification. Tomorrow's mental health advocates should submit the following:

  • $25 non-refundable fees
  • Official final transcripts
  • Best collegiate test scores
  • Common Application essay
  • Two recommendations
  • Résumé of extracurriculars

Tuition and Financial Aid

For 2018-19, St. Thomas Aquinas College is billing full-time undergrads like Therapeutic Recreation B.S. majors $15,575 per term or $31,150 yearly. Studying part-time incurs $955 per credit but excess credits cost $280 apiece. The School of Arts & Sciences charges the $500 general fee and $300 technology fee. Living at the Sparkill campus' dorms like McNelis Commons adds $7,150 for housing. Meal plans for Romano Center Grill currently cost $6,100 each year. Aquinas recommends leaving $1,250 for books and $2,860 for other supplies. Annual bachelor's attendance equals around $47,610 on-site and $34,900 at home.

According to the NCES College Navigator, the Financial Aid Office at Spellman Hall 125 helps 69 percent of full-time STAC Spartans receive median assistance of $16,926 for $20.14 million combined. Collegiate funds include the Freshman Merit Scholarship, Honors Program Scholarship, Aquinas Leaders Work Scholarship, Commemorative Scholarship, Athletic Scholarship, Phi Theta Kappa Scholarship, Brother James Kearney Scholarship for the Blind, and Phentermine Clinics Health Scholarship. The Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program covers full tuition for low-income, first-generation students. New Yorkers pursue the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP), Enhanced Tuition Award, Regents Award, Aid to Native Americans, and more. Filing the FAFSA coded 023580 could garner Pell Grant or FSEOG Grant money up to $9,550 total. The Federal Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant assists dependents under 24 years old of parents killed at war. Federal Work-Study jobs require eight hours per week. Money magazine also ranked Aquinas 188th for an average debt of $22,500 from Perkins, Stafford, and private loans.

Learn more about St. Thomas Aquinas College at the School of Arts & Sciences website.