Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy

Marriage and family therapy is a recognized mental health discipline specializing in working with children, adolescents, and adults, either individually or together, within the context of systems theories. Unlike other mental health disciplines where you may take one or two classes in how to work holistically and relationally with clients, the entire program focuses the training and education to work within this paradigm. Individuals who complete the academic and clinical requirements earn a Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy.  

During the program you will be eligible to apply for a training license to practice therapy, and with additional post-degree hours of supervised work experience you can apply for full licensure as a marriage and family therapist. This degree specifically provides graduates with expertise in working with individuals, couples, and families. Additionally, this training also provides excellent preparation for other forms of clinical and administrative work in social and human service agencies.


Program Highlights

In so many ways the MFT program at Edgewood College embodies the values of the Dominican mission: truth, justice, compassion, partnership, community. Our pursuit to provide education and training based on scholarship and evidence based practice is grounded in the mission of truth. In striving for justice we train our graduates to appreciate, work with, and empower disenfranchised populations. Through the clinical work at our Family Therapy Center we partner with and support other agencies by providing compassionate therapeutic services to those who would otherwise not have access in and around the greater Madison community.

Study without sacrificing your work and home life.
Our classes are held in the evenings year around. Our program offers full-time and part-time class schedules; talk with your advisor about which schedule might work for you and your family. Most students complete the program in two years.

Be part of a unique learning community.
In our cohort-based program, you will have the opportunity to work in a team setting.  New cohorts begin each Fall semester. Enrollment is limited to allow for small class size and individual attention.

Learn from exceptional faculty.
All MFT faculty members have extensive clinical experience in their subject area, and maintain active clinical work in addition to their teaching. This provides students of the program excellent training and instruction by faculty with hands-on, real-world experience in their respective fields. Several of the faculty are nationally recognized for their outstanding contributions to the field and their patients.

Participate in advanced clinical training and internships.
The program includes a 12-month internship where you will work with a variety of individuals, couples and families from the community. In Madison, Edgewood College also operates The Family Center, which provides students with a venue to meet their required clinical hours providing low-cost, high-quality, supportive therapy for individuals, couples and families.

Qualify for licensure
Obtaining your MS-MFT degree at Edgewood College qualifies you to apply for licensure in Wisconsin. Learn more about the requirements and process to receive a license as a Marriage and Family Therapist in Wisconsin. If you are planning to apply for licensure outside of Wisconsin, we can assist you in that process and answer questions you might have about how your Edgewood College MFT degree and internship experience would meet license requirements in other states. 

Degree Requirements

Program Requirements

To receive the Master of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, students must have:

  • Earned 48 credits in prescribed marriage and family therapy courses;
  • Completed the interdisciplinary studies requirements;
  • Maintained a 3.00 grade point average in those credits;
  • Successfully completed a minimum of 500 clinical contact hours (which must include 300 direct contact hours), plus 100 hours of supervision prior to graduation. 

Degree Requirements

All courses carry 3 graduate credits. Also an Independent Study course is available if needed and should be arranged with the Director of the Program.


MFT600 Intro to Systems Theories
MFT605 Intro to Marriage & Family Therapy Models
MFT610 MFT Approaches and Groups
MFT615 Psychology of Trauma and Stress
MFT620 Diversity & Inclusion 
MFT625 Couple’s and Sex Therapy
MFT630 Psychopathology & Psychopharmacology
MFT635 Assessment
MFT700 Research Methods
MFT720 Community Intersections
MFT740 Working with Children & Adolescents
MFT745 Collaboration & Contemporary Issues
MFT750 Internship I
MFT760 Internship II
MFT770 Internship III
MFT780 Internship as needed 
MFT800 Ethics & Social Responsibility 

Tuition and Financial Aid

Attending graduate school is one of the best investments you will ever make in yourself and your future. While the benefits related to personal development and growth are priceless, you can also expect your MS-MFT degree to expand your career options and enhance your earning power in the marketplace.

The job outlook for Marriage and Family Therapists is excellent. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the occupation will grow by 15% by 2024, faster than the average for all occupations. Learn more.

Remember, completing your MS-MFT degree is an investment in yourself and your career. Be sure to consider not only the total cost of your education, but think about how that total breaks down in terms of monthly costs, which can make your investment feel more manageable and affordable.

Financing Your Edgewood College MS-MFT Degree

Graduate tuition for the 2021-22 year is $1052 per credit (effective Summer 2021).  Please note that costs are expected to rise. 

Most MFT students are working professionals who take courses part-time. 48 total credits are required to complete the degree. Students complete the program in 2 years.

Financial Aid

Graduate students are eligible for financial aid in the form of Federal Stafford Loans. Learn more about Stafford Loans, including eligibility requirements and application instructions.

Graduate Student Financial Aid

Our admissions and financial aid counselors have worked with thousands of students who have questioned how they could afford to complete their graduate education. They will use their experience to suggest creative solutions for financing your education. We work with students and organizations to manage tuition reimbursement plans, extend tuition discounts to various corporate partners in the region, offer third party billing and monthly payment plans, and work with veterans to maximize their available aid.

Admission Requirements

  1. Provide evidence of a baccalaureate or more advanced degree from a United States regionally accredited or equivalent post-secondary institution with a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for regular admission status. The cumulative grade point average is computed on the highest degree held at the time of application to the Edgewood College graduate program.
  2. Complete and submit graduate application.
  3. Request that official transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate academic credits received from any post-secondary institutions be sent directly to Edgewood College Graduate and Professional Studies.
  4. The MFT Program Reference Form must accompany two letters of recommendation from individuals qualified to comment on the candidate's potential for success as a therapist.
  5. The MFT program requires a two-page typewritten statement indicating motives and professional goals for pursing a degree in MFT. The written statement should include:
    • Interests and motivation for wanting to be a therapist
    • Ability to succeed in graduate school
    • What preparation, either through coursework, internship, volunteer work, or
      job experience, has been undertaken that provides basic therapy skills.
  6.  Applicants must also submit a resume.
  7. Applications will be reviewed upon completion. The Associate Dean and Program Administrator may request an interview at that time.
  8. An Orientation Day for newly admitted student will be held in August.
  9. International Students may have additional admission requirements. Learn more.


The Marriage and Family Therapy Program begins the fall (August) of each academic year. It is a highly-competitive cohort-based graduate program with rolling admissions opening September 1st for the next year’s Fall cohort. Applicants are strongly advised to apply early as applications are reviewed and spots are filled throughout the year.

New Student Orientation

An Orientation Day for new students will be held in August.  

Transfer Credits

You may submit up to 12 semester hours of graduate credit for consideration of transfer to Edgewood College for application to a degree program. Approval of the respective department is required. To be considered for application to a degree program, a course must have been taken within the past five years. For more information about transfer credits, please contact your admissions counselor.

Meet Your Faculty

Morgan Abraham
Morgan Abraham
Interim Program Director, Marriage & Family Therapy Master's Program
BS in Social Work, Minor in Psychology University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, MS is Counseling, Option in School Based Family Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy

Associate Marriage and Family Therapist, Associate Professional Clinical Counselor, Pupil Personnel Services Credential, Child Welfare and Attendance Credential


Specialty Interests:
Suicide Prevention and Awareness, Domestic Violence, Formerly Incarcerated, Mindfulness, Women's Issues, Parenting, Adolescents, and LGBTQ allied.

Misc. Interests:
Hiking, walking my dog, yoga, cooking, and golfing

Vanessa Verran
Clinical Coordinator

Education: Bachelors in Family Social Sciences, University of Minnesota Twin Cities, MS Marriage and Family Therapy, Edgewood College

Credential: MFT, AAMFT Approved Supervisor Candidate

Certifications/Memberships Held: AAMFT Preclinical Fellow

Specialty Interests: Narrative therapy, couples therapy, personality disorders, and supervision. 

Misc. Interests: Theater, hanging out with her children, and reading. 

Melinda Bailey
Melinda Bailey
Adjunct Faculty

BA Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana; Ph.D. Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana

Licensed Psychologist No. 0465

Certifications/Memberships Held:
National Register Listed, American Psychological Association, Wisconsin Psychological Association

Specialty Interests:
Individual, couple, and family therapy, anxiety, stress, trauma, medical issues, pain, mind-body issues, mindfulness, experiential methods.

Misc. Interests:
Running, storytelling, photography, and my two dogs

Judi Culver
Clinic Director-The Family Center

BS in Psych and Criminal Justice, Master’s in Counseling, Lakeland College

LPC, LMFT, AAMFT Approved Supervisor

Certifications/Memberships Held:
AAMFT Clinical Fellow, Prepare and Enrich facilitator

Specialty Interests:
Clinical Specialist and Supervisor at The Family Center, Adjunct professor at Lakeland College – teaching Multiculturalism and Group Counseling:

“I enjoy working with the LGBTQ population, with those coping with grief and loss, life crisis and transitions, and corrections issues.”

Misc. Interests:
Spending time with family, travel, reading and crafts

Alex Iverson
Assistant Clinic Director

BS, Psychology, Edgewood College
MS, MFT, Edgewood College  


Certifications/Memberships Held:
AAMFT Member, AUSA Member, Prepare/Enrich Certification, 

Specialty Interests:
System Theory, CBT and Solution-Focused treatment. I also enjoy working with adolescents, young adults, military service members and military families.

Misc. Interests:
Hiking, Horseback Riding, Poetry, Puzzles, Sci-Fi Movies and TV, Harry Potter fan (House Hufflepuff), spending time with my two wonderful children, and awesome grandparents.

Myra McNair
Adjunct Faculty-MFT program

BA in Biology, MS in Marriage and Family Therapy, with specialties in addiction, infant mental health, parent/child attachment, marriage counseling, trauma-informed practices, and cultural interventions


Specialty Interests:
Owner and founder of Anesis Family Therapy, which was established in January 2016 and currently serves over 200 clients, employs 23 staff members and provides services in English, Spanish, Hmong, and Cambodian. Anesis Therapy is one of the most diverse clinics in Dane County and is rooted in systems therapy. 

In 2017 Myra was featured as an M List recipient as a Health Innovator by Madison Magazine.

listening to music, hiking and being outdoors and by water, hanging with my kids and being silly

Julia Smith
Adjunct Instructor-MFT program

Education: BS in Psychology/Women's Studies/Theater from UW Green Bay 1996, MS Marriage and Family Therapy Edgewood College 2004

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

Certifications/Memberships Held: Certified Yoga Therapist with International Association of Yoga Therapists

Specialty Interests:
Stress Management, Trauma, Movement and Yoga Therapy to treat mental health issues

Misc. Interests:
Fostering animals with DCHS, canning, gardening, movement, yoga, sports

Justin Woodward
Justin Woodward

Associates in Liberal Studies, Undergraduate from Edgewood College in Psychology, Masters from Edgewood College in Marriage and Family Therapy.

Specialty Interests:
Systems, Couples Therapy, Adolescent therapy, Therapy for suicidal adolescents and individuals with Borderline personality disorder, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Experiential Therapy, Structural therapy, Strategic Therapy, Mindfulness, Neuro-linguistic Programming.

Misc. Interests:
Photography, rock climbing, music, astrophysics, particle physics, ecology, natural sciences (especially entomology and herpetology), parenthood, engineering, economics, technological advances, computer science, science fiction, fantasy fiction, eastern philosophy (Taoism and Buddhism primarily).

Joseph Hamilton


BA in Psychology and BS in Organizational Leadership, minor in Theology from Biola University

MS in Marriage and Family Therapy from California State University Los Angeles

Specialty Interests

Cultural/Ethic Issues, End of Life Issues, Parenting, Formerly Incarcerated, Couples, Industrial Psychology

Misc. Interests:

Hiking, spending time outdoors, music, learning, and classic vehicles. 

Cat Stodola
Adjunct Instructor

Education: BA in Sociology UW-Madison 2011, MS Marriage and Family Therapy  Edgewood College 2019

Credential: MFT-IT

Certifications/Memberships Held: PREPARE/Enrich facilitator, AASECT Member

Specialty Interests: Human Sexuality/Sex Therapy, Couples work, Trauma, working with current and formerly incarcerated individuals. 

Misc. Interests: Travel, Educational Podcasts, baking, cross-stitch, and hanging out with my dog.

Debra Polacek
Program Director

Program Information


The Marriage and Family Therapy Masters Program is an accredited training program approved by the International
Accreditation Commission for Systemic Therapy Education.

Recent Program News

  • Aaron Doeppers, MFT
    "I found Edgewood College’s phenomenal MFT cohort and flexibility of the program to be a great way to transition into this field. Therapy has always been a passion of mine, and Edgewood College gave me the personal guidance and hands-on experiences to ensure I excel in my changing career.  I was able to build skills and experience through an internship at The Family Center.  This clinical experience at The Family Center was a meaningful way to live my values of community service and it is an excellent demonstration of this commitment by Edgewood College too.”
    Aaron Doeppers, MFT 2021