The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Professional Life Coaching Certificate program has been approved for accreditation by the International Coach Federation, the accrediting body for life coaching. This rare honor makes the UW the only academic institution in the Midwest with an Accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP).

Students in the Professional Life Coaching Certificate Program (PLCC) work toward professional credentialing as a life coach. Through a nine-month series of face-to-face classes and teleconferences, they learn to help people reach their potential and change their lives. Participants include those seeking to become a professional coach as well as practicing coaches who want to improve their skills.

The PLCC is the only program of its kind in the Midwest in a higher education setting. It is unique in offering a cohort model, in which students go through the program together and gain a sense of community.

Those who participated in the 2013-14 Professional Life Coaching Certificate program gave it a unanimous rating of “excellent” in the final evaluation. “The PLCC teaches through a rigorous curriculum, then coaches the participants through the experience,” says Mary Ann Marx, community education coordinator at Sauk Prairie School District. “I have never been in a course that has done such a great job of teaching, nurturing and empowering participants to grow above and beyond what they believe is even possible. This is truly the essence of coaching.”

The International Coach Federation is the sole organization that accredits life coaching programs. The PLCC’s lead instructor, Darcy Luoma, recently received her Master Certified Coach credential, granted to only a small number of experts in the field.

Learn more about the PLCC’s curriculum, requirements and instructors.