Drug and Alcohol Recovery Counselor (DARC)

Welcome! The Drug and Alcohol Recovery Counselor (DARC) program provides education and training to those seeking employment, job advancement and increased marketability in the substance abuse profession. Students learn the techniques of professional counseling and gain an understanding of the disease process of addiction, the environmental and familial risk factors contributing to alcohol and other addictions, public health issues, the continuum of care and the counselor code of ethics. Students also have the opportunity to apply their classroom learning in a clinical setting by participating in one semester of a clinical internship.

CT State Manchester was the first in Connecticut to offer the DARC program in 1971, and the program continues to enjoy its reputation as a leader in training recovery professionals. The DARC program is an academic degree program and not a certification process. The DARC associate of science degree is a recognized entry-level credential for employment in the field and meets the academic requirements for credentialing as an addiction counselor in Connecticut.

While in the internship portion of their degree program, students are encouraged to apply to the Connecticut Certification Board (CCB) for their Counselor-in-Training (CIT) credential. This credential helps students better understand the certification process and to improve their marketability as addiction professionals in the making. State certification as a drug/alcohol counselor requires an individual to have three years of paid work experience as a substance abuse counselor. For more information on the CIT credential and the certification process, visit the Connecticut Certification Board website.

Learn more about the degree and certificate in this area of study.

Many graduates of the DARC program will transfer to a four-year college or university to complete advanced degrees in counseling and related disciplines. By starting their course work at Manchester, they are able to take advantage of the Manchester’s high quality instruction and more affordable tuition and fees. Students who are thinking of transferring are encouraged to meet with the DARC Program Coordinator, to discuss how courses transfer to other institutions.

Career Information

Learn about a career as a Drug and Alcohol Recovery Counselor


Kimberly Platt, Program Coordinator
Drug and Alcohol Recovery Counselor