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Frequently Asked Questions


I'm interested in the Massage Therapy Program. How do I get started?

Prerequisites include the following:

What prerequisites do I need to complete?

Prerequisite Courses

  • MAS 119 Introduction to Massage Therapy
  • BIO 111 Human Form and Function
  • PED 228 First Aid / CPR

These courses must be completed with a "C" or better to continue and take a seat in the Massage Therapy Program.

Other Prerequisites

  • Criminal Fingerprinting Background Check
  • Urine Drug Screen
  • Medical/Physical Exam

After I complete the prerequisites, can I enroll in any massage classes?

The Massage Therapy Certificate Program is designed as a cohort program which means that once a student has a seat in the cohort they must pass all 6 massage classes during the Fall and Spring semesters to complete the certificate with 33 total credit hours. There are 20 seats available each Fall and Spring semester and even with all prerequisites successfully completed, these seats will fill on a first come, first serve basis.

Our daytime program is 2 semesters during the Fall and Spring it begins in August and ends in May.

  • Monday-Friday 9-11:50 a.m. with the exception of Tuesdays.
  • Tuesday class hours run 9-10:50 a.m. and 12:30-4:30 p.m.

Our evening program is 2 semesters during the Spring and Fall it begins in January. Students have the summer session off and they complete the following Fall semester.

  • Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday - 6-8:50 p.m.
  • Thursday - 6-9:50 p.m.
  • Saturday clinical - 9 a.m. to 12:50 p.m.

Each program potentially may have additional outreach hours.

What are some of the unique features of CLC's program?

  • Small class size - 20 maximum
  • All adjunct-faculty are licensed massage therapists or practicing health practitioners.
  • The group stays together throughout the program, becoming a tight-knit community.
  • Interactive learning environment
  • Utilization of various learning styles
  • Block classes in the morning or evening
  • Wide range of modalities - Eastern and Western
  • Personal growth and transformation oriented
  • Strong communications component integrated into training program
  • Focused on whole person and larger community
  • Community outreach opportunities
  • A.A.S. degree available

What additional resources does CLC offer?

  • CLC offers students the services of a comprehensive Career Placement Center, easy access to the Small Business Administration Center on campus, on –campus library, tutoring, counseling, an office of students with disabilities (OSD) and more.
  • CLC offers Financial Aid if you qualify. Fill out the FAFSA and contact the Financial Aid Office for further information. Scholarships are also available.
  • CLC offers free access to the fitness center with exercise classes at the Grayslake Campus.

How much does the program cost?

Total costs including prerequisites and books approx. $7300 for in-district residents. Prerequisite courses are not included in this estimate. Contact the Registrar and Records Office if you are unclear about your status as a Lake County resident. This program is approved by the V.A.

The Massage Therapy Program includes:

  • Textbooks
  • Student liability insurance through a professional organization ABMP
  • Online national prep-exam
  • Sheets and lotion/oil for the Therapeutic Student Public Clinic

Do I have to buy my own massage table?

CLC provides tables and massage chairs for all classroom and Therapeutic Student Public Clinic hours.  CLC currently has an agreement with a Massage Supply Company that will give our students 20% off the purchase of their table with free shipping.

Can I start with the massage therapy certificate program and then declare the degree later?

Yes, our programs were designed on the basis of a "ladder" approach. This means that all of the coursework you complete for one of our certificates will count towards the A.A.S. degree.

Can I seek out employment once I graduate with a certificate?

The state of Illinois requires Massage Therapists to be licensed. After successful completion of the accredited certificate program a student will be eligible to sit for the Federal Licensing Exam (MBLEx). Once they have successfully completed the exam, they can apply for state licensure.

Are there any additional costs associated with becoming a Licensed Massage Therapist?

  • MBLEX - Federal Board Exam $195
    • The exam is given throughout the state of Illinois. Student will register with the exam board and determine the closest testing center for their convenience.
    • The exam is computer based – students will receive score at time of exam.
  • Illinois Licensure - $175
  • CLC will assist student in the process of filling out the appropriate forms.

Can I work in Wisconsin, too?

Yes, the state of Wisconsin is now a licensed state that requires completion of a 600 contact hour accredited program. CLC 's program will provide the student over 600 contact hours for the option of acquiring Wisconsin licensure as well as Illinois. Completion of CLC's program fits the requirements for majority of states that require licensure.

What if I still have remaining questions?

Schedule a time to meet with the Department Chair, Dr. Joana Pabedinskas

Dr. Pabedinskas a will confirm that you understand the program, its requirements, the demands it makes of students, and the massage therapy field in general.

Go under www.clcillinois.edu/programs/mas and look under the resources link to ABMP, AMTA, and National Certification Exam sites to get a better understanding of the industry and requirements.

Also, consider receiving two or three professional massages, if you haven’t already. Our CLC student massage clinic is open at a discounted rate September through May.

We encourage all students to attend information sessions for wellness coaching and personal training certificates as well.

How do I contact the Massage Therapy Program's Department Chair?

Joana Pabedinskas, Ph.D
Full Time Faculty HWP
Massage Therapy Department Chair
Southlake Campus, Vernon Hills
Phone: 847-543-2029
Email: jpabedinskas@clcillinois.edu