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Counselor-in-Training (CIT) Program

Serenity Lane Treatment Center
Home Other Drug/Alcohol Related Programs Counselor-in-Training (CIT) Program

Become a certified substance use disorder counselor (CADC I) through Serenity Lane’s 1-year counselor-in-training program. Currently accepting applicants.

Train to become a drug treatment counselor

Become a Certified Substance Use Disorder Counselor

Serenity Lane’s Substance Use Disorder Counselor-in-Training (CIT) Program has been training substance use disorder counselors for over thirty years. This program began when the first Serenity Lane board realized that a pool of well-trained counselors would be necessary to meet the increased demands of substance use disorder.

Serenity Lane offers free training for one full year and we offer a low interest loan of up to $10,000 to offset living expenses while you attend the program. You will receive top quality instruction and experience that you will use for career enhancement over a lifetime.

To Qualify:

To qualify for the counselor-in-training program you must have at least a high school diploma or equivalent. If you are in recovery, you must have two years in recovery attested to by a letter from your sponsor.

To Apply:

Application materials can be obtained in the following ways:

  • Download materials from this website.
  • Call Serenity Lane at (541) 687-1110 and ask that a program application packet be mailed to you.
  • Pick up materials in person from our Coburg campus.

Download Application Materials

CIT Application Letter
Sample Resume

Return the completed application to:

Mailing Address:
Serenity Lane
Clinical Director
PO Box 8549,
Coburg, OR 97408

Physical address:
Serenity Lane/Clinical Director
1 Serenity Lane
Coburg, Oregon 97408


Your application will be reviewed, then if deemed appropriate for the program, you will be called for a personal interview with the program coordinator. You will have an opportunity to speak with a current trainee and at least one other clinician. Your references will be checked.

Once you have been accepted into the CIT Program you will be invited for a three day orientation. During the orientation you will get acquainted with Serenity Lane, our policies and expectations of you as a counselor trainee.

Come join us for the most fulfilling, life-changing work you will ever do!

Program Basics

The year is divided into 4 three-month rotations giving participants experience in a variety of treatment settings. Hours and duties change as you progress through the program.

Your training includes experience hours earned by job shadowing a Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor and performing tasks under their direct supervision.

  • Participate in group sessions with counselor mentor.
  • Learn group and individual counseling skills.
  • Write initial treatment reviews & plans, discharge plans, progress notes and recovery support plans at their counselor mentor’s direction.
  • Develop case management skills and other group counseling techniques.

As an Substance Use Disorder Counselor-in-training you may also learn additional skills at the following sites:

Our training also includes classroom instruction by a Certified Substance Use Disorder Counselor.

Some of the instruction given includes:

  • Basic counseling skills and counseling theory
  • Group counseling skills
  • Pharmacology of substance use disorder
  • Ethics and professional responsibility
  • Biopsychosocial Assessments & Evaluations
  • Relapse Prevention & Intervention Techniques
  • Multicultural perspectives and diversity issues

At the end of the training program, graduates celebrate the completion of more than 1900 experience hours and 170+ classroom training hours. This training will prepare you to apply for certification as an entry level counselor. The Mental Health & Addiction Certification Board of Oregon (MHACBO) administers the exam certifying the candidate as qualified to practice at the level of CADC I.

History of the Program

Dr. Thomas Kerns, Serenity Lane’s founder, remembered his own residency training to become a doctor and suggested that this type of “hands on” instruction was a good model to follow. Serenity Lane’s CIT Program was born with a lone candidate who went everywhere and learned everything that could be learned about this demanding work.

From that humble beginning, our CIT Program has grown and changed to encompass all aspects of substance use disorder treatment and the evolving demands of this highly specialized profession.

Get help today:   Get help today: 1 (800) 543-9905 or
Submit a Confidential Inquiry.
Non-profit treatment centers for
alcohol and drug addictions.
Treatment facilities located in:

Coburg, Eugene, SE Portland, SW Portland, Salem, Albany, Bend, and Roseburg, OR and Vancouver WA