New Career Pathway for Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselors Being Created by AHP

Advocates for Human Potential, Inc. (AHP) has been awarded an Apprenticeship Expansion, Systems Building, and Construction Inclusion Grant from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. AHP’s contract is unique because it focuses on expanding the state’s substance use disorder treatment workforce. AHP will create a core operating infrastructure to support Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor II (LADC II) apprenticeships on a statewide basis.
This investment is part of the state’s efforts to support expanded apprenticeship programs across the Commonwealth to meet critical workforce training needs and boost employment opportunities for residents.
LADC II is an entry-level addiction treatment clinician. The plan is to place up to 35 individuals in apprenticeships in year one and 100 individuals over three years.
“The Massachusetts Division of Apprentice Standards is committed to encouraging the development of apprenticeship programs in expansion industries,” said Patrick Mitchell, Director of Apprenticeship and Work-Based Learning with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development. “I'd like to congratulate Advocates for Human Potential for being a recipient of the FY 23 Apprenticeship Expansion, Systems Building, and Construction Inclusion Grant.”

The apprenticeship program offers a new career pathway to becoming a LADC II, as it uses a work-based learning model. This means people are hired first, so they can “earn while they learn” as they fulfill their licensure requirements, making licensure more appealing and accessible. There are few registered apprenticeship programs like this in the United States.

“AHP is thrilled to spearhead this apprenticeship initiative, as it helps to mitigate the persistent shortage of licensed addiction clinicians in Massachusetts and is consistent with our goal of making positive changes in the behavioral health workforce system,” says AHP Director of Strategic Initiatives Jeff Zornitsky. “The LADC II apprenticeships will increase the number of paid professionals available to help people with substance use disorders by making licensing opportunities more accessible and financially feasible.”

AHP will work with several partners on this statewide project, including the Massachusetts Workforce Investment Boards and Career Centers; state-approved LADC II training providers, such as High Point Treatment Centers’ Addiction Training Program; community-based behavioral health provider organizations; and RIZE Massachusetts, a foundation committed to addressing the opioid epidemic. RIZE Massachusetts has generously provided $270,000 over three years to fully cover the individual classroom training costs required to meet state licensing requirements.

“RIZE is committed to bolstering the behavioral health workforce, with a focus on addiction services, to ensure that anyone who seeks treatment, no matter where they live, will have access to quality care and support,” says RIZE President and CEO Julie Burns. "RIZE aims to increase access to the addiction workforce by ensuring that the apprenticeships are offered to interested candidates who identify as BIPOC, LGBTQ+ or any other backgrounds that have been historically underrepresented so that the workforce may better reflect the diversity of the residents of the state.”
If you would like more information about this initiative, please contact Jeff Zornitsky at

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