Enhance your livelihood through improving the mind, body and spirit of others.

Research demonstrates that massage relieves pain, reduces stress, and provides relaxation plus significant benefits for physical and psychological conditions. Massage Therapists work to improve the health and well-being of their clients through the manipulation of muscle and connective tissues in a variety of techniques.

Licensed Massage Therapists may work as small business owners, as independent contractors or employees in spas or salons, in corporate offices, or in hospitals or other medical settings. The TCL Massage Therapy program prepares graduates to succeed on the paths of their choice.

The Program

The TCL Massage Therapy program offers a daytime schedule for courses. The TCL Massage Therapy program offers a daytime schedule for courses. The Daytime schedule is a full-time course load organized within three full days per week (avg. 8.5 hours per day), completed in three semesters (Fall/Spring/Summer).  Students build a strong academic foundation as well as developing refined technical skills, and the TCL Massage Therapy program has maintained a 100% completion rate for the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Exam (MBLEx) for over a decade.

Graphic by the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards.

Students interested in the Massage Therapy program are invited to visit the campus, speak with our current students, and schedule time to observe class in session. For more information contact Denise Van Nostran, Director of Massage therapy,

Technical College of the Lowcountry’s 750-hour, three-semester, 31-credit-hour Massage Therapy training program is offered entirely at the New River Campus in Bluffton.

Courses include Anatomy and Physiology, Kinesiology, Pathology, Swedish Massage Principles and Practice, Deep Tissue and Muscle Energy/Stretching Techniques, Pregnancy Massage, Aromatherapy and Spa Treatments, Sports Massage, Chair Massage, Reflexology, plus Supervised Student Clinics and Professional Practicum (Internship).

The TCL Massage Therapy program may be included in a General Technology Associates Degree, allowing students to obtain a two-year degree if that is their goal. Please speak with your Health Sciences advisor for more information.

Certify Your Skills

Successful completion of the Massage Therapy program, including coursework and supervised clinical practice, makes students eligible for the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination offered by the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards, fulfilling requirements for licensure in the state of South Carolina.

Accreditation & Accolades


The Massage Therapy program of the Technical College of the Lowcountry is the only program in the State of South Carolina to be awarded accreditation by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA). COMTA program accreditation applies rigorous standards specifically for the Massage Therapy curriculum, program management, and teacher qualifications. Out of the nearly 1,500 massage schools in the U.S., fewer than 100 have achieved and maintain COMTA accreditation.

Program Director Denise Van Nostran serves as Vice-Chair of the South Carolina Massage Therapy Panel, and has been appointed to the 11 member Commission for Massage Therapy Accreditation, the governing body responsible for evaluating accreditation applications from massage therapy programs across the nation.

The Technical College of the Lowcountry is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate degrees. Degree-granting institutions also may offer credentials such as certificates and diplomas at approved degree levels. Questions about the accreditation of Technical College of the Lowcountry may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website ( 

Important Dates

The application period for the Fall 2024 goes through  May 28, 2024. Visit for more information.

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  • Quick Facts


    TCL’s Massage Therapy program is the region’s best and most affordable option.


    The 750 hour Massage Therapy program is completed within three semesters.


    Employment for Massage Therapists will continue to grow.


    South Carolina’s annual mean wage for massage therapists is $43,050 according to 2022 reports from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That average includes both full-time and part-time massage therapists. Earnings can increase substantially with time and experience. In addition, employment of massage therapists is projected to grow 32 percent from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations


    Total Program Tuition: 31 credits x $214 per credit = $6,634.

    Remember, this is before S.C. Lottery Tuition Assistance and other financial aid, which could drop your costs by more than half. In fact, after financial aid, many TCL students attend for free. See more about paying for TCL.

    *Based on Fall 2022 in-state, in-service-area tuition. Your actual cost may differ. Does not include fees, books and other costs. Qualifications vary; all subject to change.


    “Our graduates are in demand. Because of COMTA accreditation, our successful track record, and the employment opportunities in our area, students are relocating here to enroll in the program.”

    Denise Van Nostran

    Program Director


    Important Additional Requirements

    All Massage Therapy credit hours must be in-class with supervised instruction; distance learning may not be applied to this program.

    Applicants interested in the Massage Therapy program must first complete the college admission application process. The student will then make an appointment to meet with a Health Sciences Advisor. Acceptance into the college does not guarantee admission into a health sciences program. Applications for admission to the Massage Therapy program may only be obtained from Health Sciences advisors. Call 843.525.8267 for additional information and to schedule an appointment with an advisor.

    Is this program for you?

    Yes, particularly if you:

    • Enjoy work that involves movement and fitness
    • Have a compassionate, caring spirit for others
    • Have an interest in holistic health
    • Want to be part of a profession that is highly in demand
    • Seek flexible employment options

    Program Dean

    Joey Swearingen

    Dean, Health Sciences


    Beaufort Mather Campus, Bldg. 4, Rm. 109


    Denise Van Nostran

    Director of Massage Therapy / Instructor


    New River Campus, Bldg. 50, Rm. 221