Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (Client/Patient)


Recruitment #240321-9147SH-001


Looking for an exciting opportunity to make a real impact?
If so, join our team of dedicated professionals at the State of Connecticut!

Join the State of Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (Client/Patient)! We are recruiting for two (2) experienced and qualified individuals to join our team! Dive into a world of impactful mental healthcare, where your skills and compassion make a difference. Explore the details below and seize the opportunity to be a part of something meaningful!

  • FACILITY: Whiting Forensic Hospital (WFH)
  • ADDRESS: Middletown CT
  • SCHEDULE: Full-time (40 hours weekly), Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 
      • #139741: will rotate between Dutcher, Valley View Café, and Page Hall
      • #137835: will work within Whiting Units 4 & 6
  • Join an Award-Winning Team: Be part of the prestigious Forbes-ranked State of Connecticut, recognized as one of the Best Employers of 2023. Experience national acclaim for providing unparalleled job growth, competitive benefits, and flexible schedules.
  • Platinum Healthcare Excellence: Enjoy the nation's top-rated healthcare plan for state employees and their dependents. Our Platinum Healthcare Plan, ranked the best by Georgetown’s Center on Health Insurance Reform and endorsed by Ellen Andrews, Ph.D., ensures comprehensive coverage and well-being for you and your family.
  • Secure Your Future: Benefit from our robust pension plan and explore supplemental retirement offerings, ensuring a secure and comfortable future for you and your loved ones.
  • Invest in Your Education and Future: As a Public Service Loan Forgiveness employer, the State of Connecticut supports your educational journey. You may qualify for student loan forgiveness after just 10 years of dedicated service. Learn more here.
  • Time for What Matters: Embrace a healthy work-life balance with generous paid time off, including 13 paid holidays per calendar year. Prioritize your well-being and make the most of your personal time. 
  • Unlock Your Potential: Grow professionally with a range of development opportunities. The State of Connecticut is committed to nurturing your skills and helping you reach new heights in your career.
  • Cultivate Balance: We believe in a healthy work/life balance for all our employees. Join us in fostering an environment where your professional and personal lives harmonize, allowing you to thrive in both.
    • Use therapeutic skills to effectively implement client care according to the Nursing Care Plan
    • Work collaboratively with professional staff to maximize the effectiveness of work performed in a maximum security environment.
    • Lead groups of clients and support staff in rehabilitative, educational and recreational activities
    • Utilize effective therapeutic interventions to facilitate the achievement of the highest level of functioning in clients 
    DMHAS is a health care agency whose mission is to promote the overall health and wellness of persons with behavioral health needs through an integrated network of holistic, comprehensive, effective, and efficient services and supports that foster dignity, respect, and self-sufficiency in those we serve.

    WFH specializes in providing inpatient services to individuals involved in the criminal justice system or are not yet ready to be safely treated in less restrictive settings. Services are provided to individuals who are admitted via Psychiatric Security Review Board (PSRB) commitment, criminal court order for restoration of competency to stand trial, civil commitment or transfer from the Department of Correction.  Discharge options are dependent on legal status and the purpose of admission. The hospital consists of 91 maximum security beds and 138 enhanced security beds.  

    Start With Us. Stay With Us. Grow With Us.

    Selection Plan

    Please read or watch our Applicant Tips on How to Apply!
    To Apply:
    • In order to be considered for this job opening, you must meet the Minimum Qualifications as listed on the job opening. The minimum experience and training requirements must be met by the close date on the job opening, unless otherwise specified.
    • You must specify your qualifications on your application. You will be unable to make revisions once you submit your application for this posting to the JobAps system.
    • In order to comply with Public Act 21-69, the State of Connecticut is no longer asking for resumes during the initial application process.
    • All application materials must be received by the recruiting agency by the time specified on the job opening for the position for which you are applying. Late applications may not be submitted and will not be considered. Exceptions are rare and limited to documented events that incapacitate a candidate during the entire duration of the job posting time period. It is the candidate’s obligation and responsibility to request an exception and provide a legally recognized justification to accommodate such exception. Requests should be made to
    • This position will be filled in accordance with contractual language, reemployment, SEBAC, transfer, promotion and merit employment rules.
    Important Next Step Information for After You Apply:
    • Although applicants will receive correspondence via email, as a backup they are also encouraged to sign on to their Personal Status Board on a daily basis to monitor their status, view all emailed notices and complete tasks required in the recruitment process.
    • This posting may require completion of additional referral questions (RQs). You can access these RQs via an email that will be sent to you after the posting's closing date or by visiting your JobAps Personal Status Board (Certification Questionnaires section). Your responses to these RQs must be submitted by the question's expiration date. Please regularly check your email and JobAps Personal Status Board for notifications. Please check your SPAM and/or Junk folders on a daily basis in the event an email provider places auto-notification emails in a user's spam.
    • Note: At any point during the recruitment process, applicants may be required to submit additional documentation which support their qualification(s) for this position. These documents may include: a cover letter, resume, transcripts, diplomas, performance reviews, attendance records, supervisory references, licensure, etc., at the discretion of the hiring agency.
    • The immediate vacancy is listed above, however, applications to this recruitment may be used for future vacancies in this job class.
    • Interviews will be limited to candidates whose experience and training most closely meet the requirements of the position.
    • Candidates who are offered and accept a position with the State of Connecticut are bound by the State Code of Ethics for Public Officials and State Employees which is available at
    • For current state employees, salary calculations are not necessarily comparable from one of the three branches of state government (i.e., Executive, Legislative, Judicial) to the other.
    Connect With Us:
    • Due to the large volume of applications received, we are unable to provide confirmation of receipt or status during the recruitment process.
    • Updates will be available through your JobAps portal account. If you have any questions pertaining to this recruitment please contact Alyssa Hovanec via email at


    In a state facility or institution this class is accountable for providing vocational rehabilitation counseling services to a caseload of clients and/or patients.


    • Evaluates patients for vocational rehabilitation services; 
    • Establishes community contacts; 
    • Facilitates vocational training and retraining; 
    • Works with treatment teams to assist individual patients in achieving social, emotional and vocational stability; 
    • Maintains case records and other pertinent material; 
    • Prepares state and federal reports concerning rehabilitation services rendered; 
    • Administers and interprets psychological tests pertaining to vocational abilities; 
    • Refers clients to in-hospital rehabilitation modalities such as pre-vocational evaluation, industrial and recreational workshops; 
    • Follows up on placements made in institution or community; 
    • Carries an on-going case load; 
    • May administer Employee Assistance Program; 
    • Performs related duties as required.


    • Knowledge of
      • principles and practices of rehabilitation counseling, interviewing, psychological and occupational testing; 
      • symptoms of alcoholism and rehabilitative remedies or treatments; 
      • community resources; 
      • occupations and labor market in assigned area; 
    • Skills
      • interpersonal skills; 
      • oral and written communication skills; 
    • Considerable ability to gather, analyze, and evaluate significant case information pertinent to rehabilitation of an individual; 
    • Ability to write complete and concise case reports; 
    • Supervisory ability.


    Six (6) years of technical or professional experience in rehabilitation counseling or related counseling fields which involve dealing with emotional problems of individuals or vocational adjustment.


    • College training may be substituted for the General Experience on the basis of fifteen (15) semester hours equalling one half (1/2) year of experience to a maximum of four (4) years for a Bachelor's degree.
    • A Master's degree in rehabilitation counseling, vocational or educational guidance or a closely related field may be substituted for one (1) additional year of the General Experience.


    • Bachelor’s degree in human services, psychology, social work or sociology
    • Experience working with individuals with mental health/substance use disorders in a hospital/inpatient setting
    • Experience with job coaching, vocational training, resume and cover letter writing, and pre-vocational training in group and individual sessions              
    • Experience writing progress notes and treatment plans



    The State of Connecticut is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and strongly encourages the applications of women, minorities, and persons with disabilities.


    As defined by Sec. 5-196 of the Connecticut General Statutes, a job class is a position or group of positions that share general characteristics and are categorized under a single title for administrative purposes. As such, a job class is not meant to be all-inclusive of every task and/or responsibility.