In this weekly feature, the editors of SpringBoard highlight one career in the health care professions–including a basic description, educational requirements, core competencies/key skills needed, and related web sites and professional organizations where you can find more information!
The Director of Pastoral Care develops and manages services designed to meet the religious and/or spiritual needs of patients and their families, as well as hospital team members. The Director may also be used as a resource for the hospital on questions of ethics. As a Director, progression of the department including recruitment, training, and budgeting are key duties of the position.
EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE
A master’s degree in theology, counseling, administration, or a comparable discipline is ideal. Certification by an appropriate clinical pastoral agency and ongoing advanced training in theology, management, or clinical or pastoral skills are required. A minimum of 2 years clinical pastoral experience in a healthcare setting is typically required.
CORE COMPETENCIES AND SKILLS
■ Outstanding interpersonal skills including the ability to effectively communicate with persons throughout the organization and in the community
■ Ability to plan, direct, and evaluate staff
■ Ability to understand and work with representatives from multiplefaith groups
■ Excellent verbal and written communication skills
■ Ability to hold subordinates accountable for organizational goals
■ Ability to develop and maintain a department budget
A Director of Pastoral Care may earn in the range of $60,000 to $100,000. However, this figure varies depending on a number of variables including the size of the hospital and the region of the country in which the hospital is located. Directors of Pastoral Care of smaller hospitals in more rural areas tend to earn less than their counterparts at large, urban hospitals.
Job prospects for Directors of Pastoral Care are reported to be good across the country as this is an important part of every hospital.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
■ The National Association of Catholic Chaplains (http://www.nacc.