The trainee's internship experiences must represent a reasonable balance of activities undertaken by a clinical psychologist, including activities such as direct assessment and treatment, group and individual contact, consultation, program development, program evaluation and research. A variety of different treatment approaches and client populations should also be available. However, we recognize that the range of experiences will vary widely. The decision about whether the activities are appropriate will take into account the student's career goals.
The UC Santa Cruz CAPS internship is designed to offer supervised experiences to interns from Counseling or Clinical Psychology doctoral programs who are interested in developing clinical, crisis, outreach, and consultation skills with a diverse University student population. The internship program provides a wide range of intensive supervised experiences in individual and group psychotherapy, crisis intervention, consultation, and outreach programming. Our training program is committed to the development of psychologists sensitive to and able to work with individuals from diverse backgrounds using a community psychology model of intervention. A professional staff with diverse backgrounds is dedicated to providing a high-quality educational experience within a student services agency. The program is designed to develop and enhance the psychotherapy skills of psychology interns, with emphasis on providing short-term individual and group psychotherapy and crisis interventions to undergraduate and graduate students. CAPS emphasizes a community psychology model of intervention in its services, and interns will gain experience in primary prevention by working as part of a team of psychologists providing outreach and consultation services. The goal of our training program is to support the development of interns as entry-level psychologists who can practice as generalists in a variety of settings and have expertise working with a college student population.
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CAPS is committed to an ongoing process of intern evaluation and program evaluation throughout the year. Our goal is to assist interns in their professional development as psychologists, as well as receive feedback that will enhance and improve our training program each year. The evaluation process begins during intern orientation when interns are asked to assess their skills and competencies to identify areas of strengths and areas of growth so that training goals and objectives can be developed for the year. Interns receive formal written feedback from their primary supervisor at the end of fall, winter, and spring quarter, about their performance in the areas of assessment, brief individual and group therapy, behavioral health and stress reduction services, triage and crisis intervention, professional ethics and legal mandates, diversity, and outreach, and consultation. The primary supervisor gathers input from all training staff who work with the intern and integrates this feedback into the formal written evaluation each quarter. In addition to this formal feedback, it is expected that verbal feedback will be continuously provided during the supervision process. The Director of Training sends a copy of this evaluation, plus a letter summarizing the intern's progress on internship, to the intern's Academic Training Director in their home program. Communication with the intern's home program occurs at the end of each evaluation period.
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The consolidation of an intern's professional identity as a psychologist is a cornerstone of the internship experience, and a primary goal of the internship program is to assist interns in developing a professional identity as a psychologist. To help interns make the transition from student to professional, they are provided opportunities to participate in all of the professional activities of a University psychologist and given help in assimilating these experiential activities with their academic learning. Our goal is to assist interns in establishing a professional identity that emphasizes competent clinical decision-making, multicultural competence, and sound ethical awareness and judgment.
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The internship year is a time of transition from a trainee to an entry-level professional psychologist. In respecting individual differences among interns, we provide comprehensive, intensive, and flexible training and supervision to facilitate each intern's further development and professional integration of both clinical skills and outreach and consultation skills.
The major training goals and objectives of the internship include:
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The internship is based on the principle that the practice of psychology is based on the science of psychology. Throughout all aspects of the internship program, we train interns to develop skills and knowledge in utilizing research and theory to inform their practice of psychology. Interns are asked to present their dissertation progress at a staff meeting and are required to conduct a program evaluation project in the summer that integrates research with counseling center practice. The model of scholarly inquiry can promote the development of both the philosophy and the behaviors necessary for interns to integrate research and practice as professionals in psychology.