Skip to content Skip to main navigation Report an accessibility issue

Counseling Services and Training Activities

Provision of Services

Through instruction, observation, and supervised practice, interns develop the scope of clinical skills and professional competence necessary for providing services at a university counseling center setting. Below are the primary services interns provide at the Student Counseling Center to develop such skills and competencies.

Interns provide therapy to students who present with a wide range of concerns and symptoms within a short-term model of treatment. Interns are allowed a limited number of long-term clients on their caseload, which is determined in consultation with supervisors. Individual therapy is the primary modality in which interns gain clinical experience. Interns are given the opportunity to see 1-2 longer term clients.

Interns co-facilitate a therapy group during the fall, spring, and/or summer semesters. Instruction and provision on group therapy follows a graded, sequenced model. Interns who do not have significant group therapy experience serve as a process observer in the first semester and are supervised by the senior staff co-leading the group (0.5 hours per group session). If developmentally appropriate given their skill and competence level, the intern may co-lead a group with a senior staff member, another intern, or a practicum trainee. Should an intern co-lead a group with a practicum trainee or other intern, they would be supervised by the group coordinator, who is a licensed psychologist. Interns may also design, implement, and/or facilitate a structured group in the spring or summer semester after observing and participating in a structured group facilitated by a senior staff member. This would be done under the supervision of a licensed staff member.

Should an intern not have the opportunity to process observe, co-lead, or lead a group due to group availability, interns will utilize group supervision to obtain simulated practice of group therapy facilitation.

Each semester, interns will have the opportunity to supervise one practicum student in counseling psychology, social work, or mental health counseling. Interns receive training and supervision through the Supervision of Supervision seminar, which begins in August during the intern orientation period, shortly before fall classes begin. The seminar is both theoretical and applied in nature, combining didactic teachings and readings from the professional supervision literature with consultation, case presentations, and observation of tape.

Interns provide initial assessment and intervention, as well as crisis assessment and intervention, through Brief Assessments (BAs), intakes, and crisis coverage. BAs provide students with an initial interview and assessment that typically lasts 15-20 minutes for the purpose of collaboratively determining the most effective and appropriate services to address the student’s needs. Interns are assigned a three-hour BA shift each week, wherein they are scheduled three BA appointments to gain experience with initial assessments and interventions, crisis assessment and intervention, and referrals to various on and off-campus resources.

Interns are expected to engage in all forms of outreach at the Student Counseling Center. Interns are expected to participate in at least six outreach activities (e.g., presentations, workshops, campus-wide events). Interns are expected to develop and/or be the primary facilitator of one unique outreach over the course of the year (see Appendix B: Outreach Intern requirements).

Interns will engage in a consultation project and gain experience in providing effective psychological consultation to an organization, including developing and conducting a needs assessment and providing suggestions and feedback to the organization.

Receiving Supervision

Supervision is one of the primary tools utilized to assist interns in their training and development. As such, it is an important focus of the internship experience.

Interns receive two hours of weekly individual supervision from a primary supervisor, who has been a fully licensed psychologist for at least two years. The primary supervisor is responsible for overseeing the clinical practice of the intern and the intern’s day-to-day functioning at the center. The primary supervisor is rotated once during the year (January).

Interns meet with a secondary supervisor for one hour each week. Secondary supervision focuses on developing a particular clinical skill or professional development topic. The secondary supervisor is a senior staff member who might have expertise in a particular clinical area. If a clinical focus is identified, the secondary supervisor might supervise the intern on a few client cases that are covered in greater depth or from a different approach than the primary supervisor. The secondary supervisor helps coordinate and supervise tracks if a specific track is chosen by an intern. Secondary supervisors rotate at the end of the fall semester.

Interns receive supervision by the senior staff co-leading the group (0.5 hours per group session) for each group they co-facilitate or by a licensed psychologist if they are not co-leading with a senior staff member. Interns also receive one hour of group supervision bi-weekly for the provision of group therapy. Should an intern not have the opportunity to process observe, co-lead, or lead a group due to group availability, interns will utilize group supervision to obtain simulated practice of group therapy facilitation.

All training and instruction are provided through the utilization of a graded, sequenced, cumulative developmental model. This begins with fundamental skills and knowledge needed for a particular competence, and then progresses to more advanced, specific knowledge and techniques as interns progress through the training year.

The internship year begins with a comprehensive, structured 2-3 week orientation to the internship program. The orientation is designed to welcome interns and begin to integrate them into the Student Counseling Center. Interns are introduced to the Student Counseling Center’s mission and informed about the training program’s model, philosophy, aims, service and training activities, referral sources, and center operations.

During orientation, each intern will complete the Intern Self-Assessment/Interest Survey which will assist in formulating training goals for the year. Interns also will complete the Evaluation of Intern by Supervisor to continue the self-assessment process and to become familiar with the evaluation process. Together with their supervisors, interns will determine the experiences necessary to attain their individualized training goals.

Instruction on Brief Assessments (triage), crisis assessment and intervention, referral resources and processes, hospitalization procedures, and legal and ethical standards are provided during orientation.

This seminar meets for an hour and a half weekly and provides training via didactics and discussion for various clinical and multicultural topics. The seminar series focuses on topics relevant to clinical practice within a university counseling setting comprised of a diverse study body. Interns are provided learning opportunities to examine biases, reflect on personal and professional identities, and augment clinical skills. Topics include working with students who have disordered eating or eating disorders, utilizing DBT skills in therapy, providing culturally competent assessment, working with international students, etc.

This seminar meets for two hours weekly and provides supervision of supervision that the interns provide to practicum students. In the beginning of the seminar, readings from the professional supervision literature relevant to their upcoming role as practicum supervisors are provided and discussed. Topics include definitions and models of supervision, supervisor roles, tape review, evaluation, ethical and legal considerations, and multicultural competence. As interns begin meeting with their trainees, the seminar shifts in focus from theoretical to applied in nature. Process issues relevant to the provision of supervision by interns are discussed. The goal of this seminar is to assist interns in the development of intermediate to advance skills and knowledge in providing clinical supervision. Interns will bring video-recorded sessions of supervision to the seminar for consultation, feedback, and discussion.

This seminar meets for one hour weekly for case presentations by interns and senior staff. A senior staff psychologist presents a case once every six weeks and facilitates a discussion among the interns. Interns are then scheduled in subsequent weeks to present formal case presentations and the same senior staff member facilitates the discussion. This is designed to allow interns the opportunity to receive peer supervision of their clinical work, along with feedback from a senior staff psychologist. It also give interns an opportunity to have regular contact with a variety of senior staff psychologists. In preparation for job interviews, during the first four weeks of this seminar during spring semester, interns will present a formal case presentation to senior staff and receive feedback.

Case presentations include diagnostic information, the appropriate application and interpretation of one or more assessment instruments (e.g., CCAPS, BAI), and exploration and discussion of multicultural factors. In the spring semester, interns are expected to incorporate at least one formal assessment measure (e.g., PAI, MCMI). Interns are encouraged to include selected portions of session recordings as part of their presentation.

This seminar meets for one hour bi-weekly and provides didactic and experiential learning for how to provide effective outreach and consultation within a university setting/at a university counseling center. The seminar also provides group supervision as the interns provide effective consultation to an organization, including developing and conducting a needs assessment and providing suggestions and feedback to the organization.

This seminar meets for one hour monthly and focuses on exploring and providing training for various professional topics. Topics may include job applications, maintaining licensure, EPPP, etc.

Interns meet for an hour bi-weekly as a group with the training director for cohort supervision. Beginning sessions typically focus on adjustment to internship and building cohesion as an intern class. Discussion topics as the year progresses might include professional development support, assistance with job searches, or work-life balance. The format is intentionally unstructured to provide space for timely discussion of pertinent or emerging concerns.

During the year, interns have the option of individualizing their training experience in the form of a special emphasis area (“training track”). This option provides interns greater flexibility in tailoring their internship experience to meet their unique interests and needs.

  • Tracks are optional. If no track is chosen, the intern will pursue generalist training.
  • Secondary supervisors typically will serve as track leaders. Tracks will be supervised mainly during the hour of secondary supervision if the track is related to the provision of individual therapy.
  • Interns may choose one track each semester (fall, spring, summer).
  • Time allotment to be determined in collaboration with the primary supervisor, secondary supervisor, and training director.

Additional Activities

Additional training and support activities during internship that provide opportunities for clinical, professional, and personal development.

All senior staff, interns, and available trainees attend this bi-weekly Wednesday meeting designed to communicate items of interest or concern related to the Student Counseling Center.

The training director meets informally with the interns on a regular basis to assess how the internship training is meeting the interns’ needs and to solicit feedback about the training program. The training director keeps and open-door policy and interns are encouraged to meet informally and/or request additional meetings to focus on training concerns.

Interns meet one hour bi-weekly to discuss their internship experiences, offer peer consultation, and offer/receive support from one another.

Bi-weekly meetings with other trainees and senior staff to staff cases and receive clinical consultation. This time is also used for staff to discuss students who may warrant more frequent and/or longer term care and approve such cases as a group.

Time is provided for activities like documentation, consultation with clinicians, tape review, supervision prep, and completing readings. Time is also given for research, including dissertation hours, up to two hours per week.

Campus partners and CEUs are the focus of every first Friday staff meeting of the month. Additionally, the Division of Student Life typically schedules professional staff development events three to four times a semester. These gatherings provide an opportunity for interns to hear pertinent issues discussed as well as to develop cross-departmental professional relationships.

Six days of release time is available for professional development purposes, such as conferences and continuing education trainings. Of the six days, a maximum of three days can be used for dissertation leave time. Professional development leave time is not to be used for graduation. Each intern has $500 available for professional development purposes, such as traveling to a conference or registration fees. Time off or funds related to professional development should be requested via the Professional Development Request Form on Teams.