Rehabilitation Counselors in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) work with persons who experience functional impairments and disabilities associated with mental health, physical, and/or psychosocial challenges affecting employment, independent living, or personal adjustment. and utilize various professional counseling and clinical modalities to promote and support optimal functioning, independence, personal adjustment, adaptation to disability, community reintegration, and recovery. Basic Requirements: United States Citizenship: Non-citizens may only be appointed when it is not possible to recruit qualified citizens in accordance with VA Policy. Education: (1) A master's degree in rehabilitation counseling or clinical rehabilitation counseling from a rehabilitation counseling program accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP). If the applicant's degree was granted prior to July 1, 2017, the program must be accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education. OR (2) A master's degree in counseling or clinical rehabilitation counseling from a college or university accredited by a national or regional accrediting body accredited by Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) OR (3) A master's or doctoral degree in a related field of study with course content that emphasized rehabilitation, counseling, disability, therapy, health, employment, wellness, or human development from a college or university accredited by a national or regional accrediting body accredited by CHEA. OR (4) Foreign graduates with a degree acceptable by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC). Certification: Current, full and unrestricted certification as a certified rehabilitation counselor (CRC) from the CRCC to practice vocational rehabilitation counseling. Exception: RC graduates from an approved counseling or rehabilitation counseling program who otherwise meet the basic qualification requirements and the additional degree requirements for CRC certification by the CRCC, but do not possess the required certification, may be appointed, pending certification, as a graduate RC on a full-time temporary appointment not-to-exceed two years under the authority of 38 U.S.C. § 7405(a)(1)(D). English Language Proficiency. Must be proficient in spoken and written English in accordance with VA Handbook 5005, Part II, Chapter 3, Section A, paragraph 3.j. Physical Requirements: See VA Directive and Handbook 5019. Grade Determinations: GS-09 Experience. None beyond the basic requirements. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs). In addition to meeting the experience or educational requirements for this grade level, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: (a) Knowledge of human development and behavior, medical, psychosocial, and vocational aspects of disability and differential influences of environmental and cultural factors to assist persons with disabilities in determining suitable vocational goals. (b) Knowledge of history, philosophy and disability rights legislation in the field of rehabilitation to apply in the practice of rehabilitation counseling. (c) Ability to synthesize assessment and diagnosis information in conjunction with labor market trends and community/educational resources to develop an effective individual service delivery plan. (d) Knowledge of caseload management strategies to maximize an individual's independent functioning from assessment through provision of post-employment services. (e) Ability to employ person-centered job development strategies to facilitate successful job placement. (f) Knowledge of assessment tools and methods, functional capacity evaluations and specific vocational preparation to evaluate transferrable skills, residual capacities and needs for accommodations and assistive technology. GS-11 Experience. Completion of one year of professional experience equivalent to the next lower grade level directly related to the position being filled. OR Education. A doctoral degree in rehabilitation counselor education or related field (e.g. rehabilitation psychology) from a CACREP accredited institution or from an institution accredited by a national or regional accrediting body accredited by CHEA. Demonstrated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs). In addition to meeting the experience or educational requirements for this grade level, the candidate must demonstrate all of the following KSAs: (a) Knowledge of physical and psychological disabilities, appropriate accommodations and assistive technology principles to mitigate and reduce or eliminate barriers to integrate into the community. (b) Knowledge of counseling theory, medical and psychiatric terminology and signs and symptomology of suicidal and homicidal ideations, to communicate appropriately with community health care professionals to provide useful input to other team members and employers in relation to the Veteran and/or his/her family's psychosocial needs and to recommend and help implement suitable treatment plans. (c) Ability to use evidence-based and evidence informed vocational and professional counseling practices to include individual placement and support (IPS), customized employment and supported employment models and motivational interviewing skills to promote self-awareness, adjustment to disability, enhanced job retention and successful integration to the community. (d) Knowledge of career development processes and job analysis methodology to determine essential functions of jobs, worksite modifications and/or alternative vocational goals given the work history and residual functional capacities of individuals with disabilities. (e) Ability to administer and interpret a wide variety of assessment methods including transferrable skills and labor market analyses to evaluate for individual interests, aptitudes and abilities and to identify suitable vocational goals for the development of an effective individual service delivery plan. (f) Knowledge of marketing strategies to develop collaborative partnerships/Memorandums of Agreement within VA and local business community to enhance employment and/or work opportunities. (g) Knowledge of military culture and specific factors and dynamics associated with Veterans, particularly combat Veterans, to assist those who are returning to community and community based-work. Preferred Experience: Experience working with behavioral health populations. Knowledge about therapeutic work programs. Experience with outreach and strong collaborative skills. References: VA Handbook 5005 Part II Appendix G62, dated July 21, 2020 The full performance level of this vacancy is GS-11. The actual grade at which an applicant may be selected for this vacancy is in the range of GS-09 to GS-11. Physical Requirements: Light lifting (under 15 pounds); light carrying (under 15 pounds); reaching above shoulder; use of fingers; both hands required; walking (6 hours); standing (6 hours); repeated bending (0.25 hours); climbing, legs only (1 hour); both legs required; ability for rapid mental and muscular coordination simultaneously; near vision correctable at 13" to 16" to Jaeger 1 to 4; far vision correctable in one eye to 20/20 and to 20/40 in the other; both eyes required; depth perception; ability to distinguish basic colors; ability to distinguish shades of colors; hearing (aid permitted); mental and emotional stability. ["Rehabilitation Counselor provides personal adjustment counseling, therapeutic rehabilitation interventions, and case coordination services. Uses evidence-informed and evidence-based modalities to aid Veterans with severe disabilities, such as physical, psychosocial, psychological, or neurological barriers, integrate successfully into the community. Serves Veterans who have myriad barriers to overcome and achieve competitive employment, educational, and independent living goals. Provide a variety of professional rehabilitation counseling services such as personal adjustment counseling, therapeutic rehabilitation interventions and case coordination services, utilizing evidence-informed and evidence-based modalities and professional counseling practices to aid Veterans with severe disabilities in achieving competitive employment and educational and independent living goals. Uses effective counseling skills to promote self-awareness, adjustment to disability, enhanced job retention and successful integration to the community. Conduct biopsychosocial assessments using medical records, pertinent disability documentation, observation and interviews with Veterans and their support systems to generate personal, vocational, and educational histories. Selects, administers, and interprets vocational and other psychometric instruments to evaluate abilities, transferrable skills, functional capacity, labor market analyses, aptitudes, interests, values, preferences, and overall work resilience and synthesize into an interpretive data report. Customizes vocational exploration activities to identify self-determined rehabilitation needs and goals. Administers Measurement Based Care instrument to track progress throughout treatment and adjust goals and services as needed. Consult with interdisciplinary teams to enhance coordination of care, ensure medical clearance, and provide for optimal timing of further interventions. Synthesize assessment information to identify barriers to employment and their vocational implications. Completes various quality assurance and improvement activities to improve services provided. Determine clinical need for and capacity to benefit from therapeutic and rehabilitation services to include work restoration/resilience treatment, transitional work placement and/or competitive employment, assistive technology, financial benefits counseling and potential benefits protections. Develop patient-centered treatment plans utilizing Specific, Measurable, Agreed upon, Realistic, and Time-based (SMART) goals and provides ongoing assessment of Veteran's progress. Procures and manages transitional work agreements from community, state, and federal agencies. Monitors worksite compliance with agreements to ensure Veterans are appropriately trained and evaluated consistent with industry standards. Devises solutions to reduce and/or eliminate barriers and meet Veterans' placement needs which may require substantial modification to environmental or functional demands within a work setting. Work Schedule: Monday - Friday. 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM\nTelework: Not Available.\nVirtual: This is not a virtual position.\nFunctional Statement #: 000000\nRelocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized.\nPermanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized.\nFinancial Disclosure Report: Not required"]
Providing Health Care for Veterans: The Veterans Health Administration is America’s largest integrated health care system, providing care at 1,255 health care facilities, including 170 medical centers and 1,074 outpatient sites of care of varying complexity (VHA outpatient clinics), serving 9 million enrolled Veterans each year.