Life Coach Training and Certification

We are professionals committed to reaching back, inspiring, and equipping struggling young people to overcome and thrive. We have found research-based life coaching is an ideal outlet to do this work.

Do you have a passion for empowering disadvantaged young people?

Program Overview

Our program includes training, practice, and supervision around core coaching competencies and research-based coaching practice. It is ideal for

  • professionals working directly with underserved youth,
  • professionals leading organizations serving these populations, or
  • those who aim to serve this audience through private coaching businesses or volunteering.

Because socioeconomic disadvantage is a common issue for our audience, trainees who certify through our program commit to coaching one to two pro-bono and/or severe sliding scale clients yearly on a need basis. If you’re okay with that, read on!

Our Coaching Focus

Resource Optimization
Personal Development
Social Development
Structural Support Development

Our work with each client begins with an assessment to understand the client’s needs and goals. From there, the coach tailors the program to the client incorporating relevant focus areas from the four domains above. Focus areas are adjusted for ongoing development as the client progresses.

Coaching clients through resource optimization involves helping the client identify and leverage the internal and external tools presently available to them to begin moving toward their goals. We facilitate self-awareness around concepts like identity, strengths, interests, values, and desires to enhance self-mastery.

Coaching clients through social development involves facilitating social and emotional learning and related competency building. Through this focus, clients become more aware of the functional role of social interactions and relationships to success and well-being.

Coaching clients through personal development involves helping clients enhance their sense of agency to choose goals, act toward chosen goals, and succeed. We support clients as they prioritize self-regulation and tap into self-determined motivation, meaning, and purpose on their way to achievement.

Coaching clients through structural support development involves facilitating goal-orientation for fit in education, job paths, and prosocial groups conducive to goals. We coach clients through the research and considerations necessary to begin to establish self-determined life direction, related planning, and action steps around long-term goals.

Youth Coach Trainee Requirements

Candidates must be

  • 21 years old or older and 
  • hold a bachelor’s degree or higher in any field with 1 year of experience working directly with at-risk youth or
  • hold an associate’s degree or higher in any field with 2 years of experience working directly with at-risk youth or
  • have four years of experience working directly with at-risk youth or young adults.

Is training available in my area?

Training is virtual and available internationally via webinar and telephone conference calling.

Session Schedule

The length of training varies by selected training stages. The weekly time commitment includes a 3-hour webinar/conference call once weekly, required reading, and assigned practice coaching.

Winter 2016 – Saturdays – Beginning February 27: FULL (Facilitator: Leah B. Mazzola, PhD, BCC, ACC)

Summer 2016 – Thursdays – Beginning June 30: FULL (Facilitator: Maggie Steele, MSW, ACC)

Winter 2017 – Saturdays – Beginning January 21: FULL (Facilitator: Leah B. Mazzola, PhD, BCC, ACC)

Spring 2017 – Tuesdays – Beginning April 4: FULL (Facilitator: Maggie Steele, MSW, ACC) 

Fall 2017 – Mondays and Wednesdays – Beginning September 11: FULL (Facilitator: Leah B. Mazzola, PhD, BCC, ACC)

Winter 2018 – Tuesdays – Beginning February 27: FULL (Facilitator: Maggie Steele, MSW, BCC, ACC)

Fall 2018 – Saturdays, 10:00 AM CST – 1:00 PM CST (90 minutes lecture & discussion + 90 minutes practice & supervision) (Facilitator: Leah B. Mazzola, PhD, BCC, ACC)

  • Class dates: September 1, 2018-January 26, 2019
  • Registration is OPEN as of 7/9/18
  • Only 9 slots remaining
  • Registration CLOSES 8/15/18

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Stage 2: Certified Youth Transition Coach

Total USD

  • 40 training hours over 13 weeks
  • Basic coaching skills
  • Training and development in YCI model coaching competencies relevant for at-risk and/or high-risk youth
  • One five-week buddy coaching engagement with a peer trainee as the coach
  • One five-week buddy coaching engagement with a peer trainee as the client
  • Intensive practice and supervision
  • 2-3 opportunities for formal supervision and pass/fail feedback
  • Ideal for youth-serving professionals who will be adding coaching to their work with underserved youth, but have no interest in independent practice or business building
  • Total training tuition is $1,000.
    • Payment plan available for 10% additional fee. Payment plan includes a $275 non-refundable registration fee + 3 monthly installments of $275 each.

Young Adult Client Feedback

Before I started coaching all I saw was why I couldn’t do more with myself. I didn’t even realize that my confidence was so low. I felt like my past was who I was and I always felt like people were judging me without knowing anything about me. My coach helped me to realize that I was really the one judging me and holding me back. The confidence and skills I gained from coaching have completely changed my outlook. I finally feel like I have so much to look forward to and so many options. My coach helped me to stop looking back and make my life happen from here. I can’t even put in words the difference it made for me. – 23-year-old client, Richardson, TX

Stage 3: Certified Youth Mentor Coach / Certified Youth Leadership Coach

Total USD

  • 60-63 training hours over 20 weeks
  •  Stage 1 & 2 content +
  • Introduction to additional evidence-based models for coaching contexts
  • Skills for independent practice and business building considerations
  • Hear from guest speaker coaches and participate in Q&A
  • Final exam (Recorded coaching session submission for evaluation and pass/fail feedback)
  • Ideal for professionals interested in independent coaching practice and business building
  • Total training tuition is $1,500.
    • Payment plan available for 10% additional fee. Payment plan includes a $330 non-refundable registration fee + 4 monthly installments of $330 each.
  • ICF and CCE approved certification as follows:

acsth 200

International Coach Federation Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (63 hours)  

Center for Credentialing Education Approved BCC Training Provider (30 hours)

30-Day Withdraw/Refund Policy: Pro-rated refunds for tuition paid beyond the registration fee are available for trainees who withdraw within 30 days of training start date.

Scholarship opportunities: We offer a small number of partial scholarships on a need basis. Interested parties must apply for consideration.

Are group rates available? Yes. A 15% discount is available for groups of six or more.

We take mental health seriously. We recommend trainees without graduate level training in behavioral sciences take a Mental Health First Aid course prior to training completion. The Mental Health First Aid course is free in some areas or may be completed with a low fee (e.g. $75.00) for the 8-hour course.