Rural Human Services Certificate

The Rural Human Service (RHS) Program, College of Rural and Community Development, is a 32-credit certificate University of Alaska academic program developed for Alaska village-based human service providers. It is intended for rural residents who are natural helpers and healers in their communities, and it is designed to help further develop skills and credentials in the helping profession.

RHS offers a culturally appropriate training program designed for rural, village-based human service workers. Skills and training are provided in services such as crisis intervention, suicide prevention, community development, and counseling in mental health, substance abuse, interpersonal violence, grief, and healing.

The program is offered over a two-year period, in an intensive cohort model (1, 2, or 3 week classes - see schedules) at four regional sites across the state of Alaska. Students are often employed full-time and return to work after the intensive classes. Students are supported by numerous partnerships and collaborations throughout Alaska.

The program curriculum, built over the course of ten years, has an active advisory council from across the regions.

Detailed PDF Program Guide



The Rural Human Services program promotes, coordinates and delivers high quality skill-based education in human service for students in rural Alaska. The mission and goals of the program include:

  1. Ensure that Rural Human Service graduates are qualified for and attain human service/behavioral health entry-level positions or promotions statewide especially in rural Alaska.

  2. Through the use of a systems approach, ensure that Rural Human Services graduates are well equipped to provide support and counseling in Alaskan communities.

  3. Meet the training needs for entry level behavioral health care workers by using best practice models of instructional delivery through the establishment of RHS learning cohorts statewide.

  4. Blend western behavioral health practices with traditional Alaska Native knowledge and

  5. Expand workforce capacity by providing academic and career paths to human service credentialing.

Program details

Academic level(s)Other
CountryUnited States
Language of instructionEnglish
InstitutionUniversity of Alaska Fairbanks
Fields of studyBasic/broad, general programmes
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