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Rehabilitation Administration

The demand for professional administrators in the Vocational Rehabilitation field is rising quickly and will continue to increase during the first decades of the twenty-first century. Rehabilitation Administrators manage and direct a wide variety of rehabilitation service programs in the public and private sectors. They often come from the ranks of experienced business administrators and rehabilitation professionals who have leadership qualities, can build cooperative relationships, and can marshal the resources necessary to lead and manage growing agencies.

The mission of Rehabilitation Administrators is to ensure that rehabilitation programs serve people with disabilities in the most efficient and effective ways possible. They apply the principles of business and public administration along with program-specific knowledge on the practical and societal implications of disability. Their responsibilities typically involve planning, programming, budgeting, operations and management, supervision and human resource development, information management, reporting, program evaluation, research, and public relations.

Rehabilitation Administrators must be sensitive to the needs of people with disabilities and have knowledge of rehabilitation and labor law. Successful administrators understand government and how it works, make effective use of public and private financial resources, and have the knowledge and commitment necessary to provide quality clinical counseling services and supervision.


Rehabilitation Administrators are hired from many kinds of private businesses and nonprofit organizations as well as from professional staff in such disciplines as rehabilitation counseling, psychology and education. Most obtain a bachelor's degree, and often a master's degree, in a rehabilitation-related field before entering management. To qualify for first-level, middle, and top management positions, individuals are advised to obtain additional education such as a master's degree in rehabilitation, business, or public administration. Individuals interested in pursuing Rehabilitation Administration may increase their knowledge and skills through in-service and continuing education venues.


There are no mandatory certification requirements for Rehabilitation Administrators, but they are generally expected to have met the certification requirements that are mandatory for the professionals they supervise. The Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) offers an adjunct designation for specialized practice within rehabilitation counseling, the CRC-Clinical Supervisor (CRC-CS) for first-level supervisors of vocational rehabilitation counselors.


Rehabilitation Administrators work in state and federal agencies, nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, medical rehabilitation facilities, and private rehabilitation businesses. Many serve in managerial positions such as supervisor, unit director, planner, human resource development director, district administrator, or grants manager.


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Find out more about Vocational Rehabilitation
(Excerpts from the Careers in Vocational Rehabilitation Booklet)
Who makes a good rehabilitation professional?
Preparing for a Career in Vocational Rehabilitation
Questions about a Career in Vocational Rehabilitation

Vocational Rehabilitation Professions:
Rehabilitation Counseling
  Rehabilitation Counselors
Rehabilitation of Individuals Who Are Blind or Have Vision Impairments
  Orientation and Mobility Specialists
  Rehabilitation Teachers
Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment
  Vocational Evaluators
  Work Adjustment Specialists
Job Development and Placement Specialists
Rehabilitation of Individuals who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
  Deafness Rehabilitation Professionals
  Interpreters for Deaf Individuals
Undergraduate Education in the Rehabilitation Services
  Rehabilitation Practitioners
Rehabilitation Administration
Other Vocational Rehabilitation Professions
  Rehabilitation Medicine, Physiatrists, Rehabilitation Nurses

  Prosthetics & Orthotics
  Rehabilitation Technologists
  Rehabilitation Psychologist
  Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists



Photo showing a woman Vocational Administrator conducting a meeting at a conference table

Photo of Ray Hopking a Vocational Rehabilitation Administrator  
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Interview with

Ray Hopkins
Vocational Rehabilitation Administrator

"Now as an administrator, I focus on affecting policies and practices that will have a positive effect on many people. My greatest satisfaction is in helping others in the profession, especially those new to the field.".