Counseling and Psychological Services

Internship Program Elements

Supervision

Interns work with supervisors who oversee intern clinical case loads. After meeting and getting to know staff members during orientation, interns make supervisor requests for individual supervision. The Training Director makes assignments based on these requests combined with supervisor availability and overall CAPS needs. Interns make supervisor requests at the beginning of each semester.

Assigned supervisors oversee intern’s clinical case loads, provide mentoring, and facilitate professional development. Interns participate in two hours of individual supervision with an appropriately licensed psychologist each week. Interns may request that one supervisor provide both hours of supervision, or may request to work with a primary supervisor for one hour and a secondary supervisor for the other hour. Interns are expected to work with two individual supervisors over the course of the internship year.

One hour of supervision each week is also provided for the intern’s elective rotation. Interns receive one additional hour of group supervision each week focused on the interns’ provision of group therapy. Interns receive .5 hours of supervision from their co-leader for each group they co-facilitate. Group supervision in the area of assessment is provided as part of the Assessment Seminar. Consultation with other staff members is done on an informal and/or as-needed basis.

Individual Counseling

Interns develop a caseload of clients whose presenting concerns and demographics fit their individual training needs and experience. By working with diverse individuals, interns increase their competency in the area of individual-cultural diversity. Interns are given priority when selecting clients, in order to facilitate maintenance of a caseload that allows for both depth and breadth of experience.

Group Counseling

Interns co-lead one group each semester and may request to co-lead additional group(s), depending on availability. Groups are co-led with a staff member during Fall and Spring Semesters. If the staff co-leader anticipates being absent for a group session, interns often have enough advanced training to lead the group alone. Prior to an intern running a group alone, the staff member co-leader consults with the intern and the intern’s primary supervisor.

During Summer Semester, interns may request to co-lead a group together. The Group Coordinator considers this request in the context of available summer groups, as well as intern readiness to co-lead a group without a senior staff member.

Couples Counseling

Couples counseling has become increasingly used by SUU students, which provides interns with the opportunity to work with couples. Interns are expected to work with three couples over the course of the internship year.

Crisis Services

At the beginning of each semester, each CAPS staff member is assigned to be the “Counselor on Duty” (COD) for one weekday each week. During that day, the COD is available for two hours to meet with students who need an intake screening or crisis appointment. Interns gain crisis service experience by:

1) Observing three intake screenings and three crisis appointments conducted by any staff member.

2) After observing the required number of appointments, interns provide a minimum of two intake screenings and two crisis appointments under the observation of any member of the Training Committee. The Training Committee then consults together to determine whether the intern is ready to independently serve as the COD. An intern may benefit from the opportunity to provide additional observed intake screenings and crisis appointments before providing these services independently.

After completing the above requirements (typically during Fall Semester), interns are ready to independently serve as the COD (typically during Spring and Summer Semesters). When providing independent COD services, interns are still paired with a licensed staff member who is available for consultation during the hours set aside for crisis services.

Assessment

Interns receive training and supervision in the area of clinical interviewing. All CAPS clients take the Outcome Questionnaire-45 (OQ-45) at intake and on a continuing weekly basis. Interns receive training in outcome assessment and the use of OQ-45 data in treatment planning. Interns also receive training in the ongoing assessment of the therapeutic alliance using the Session Rating Scale (SRS). Interns are trained to use the SRS on a weekly basis and to incorporate SRS feedback into treatment planning.

During the internship year, interns develop additional skill in the use of psychological tests related to a university counseling center population. Interns are expected to complete three educational assessments over the course of the year. The first assessment is completed during Fall Semester. Educational assessments typically assess for the presence of learning disabilities or ADHD, and facilitate the student’s ability to receive formal academic accommodations through SUU’s Services for Students with Disabilities.

Interns are also required to complete two additional psychological evaluations in an area of the intern’s choice over the course of the internship year. Possible tests include personality inventories (MMPI-2, PAI), educational assessments (WAIS-IV, WJ-III), an eating disorder inventory (EDI-III), substance abuse assessments (YAAPST, SASSI-3, ASI) and inventories of career interests and skills (SDS, SII-II, MBTI).

Interns attend Assessment Seminar during Fall, Spring, and Summer Semesters, where they receive training in the use of psychological tests as well as group supervision. Interns may also receive ongoing supervision in assessment from their individual supervisors.

Outreach

Interns lead outreach presentations based on their training needs and experience. The Outreach Coordinator presents opportunities to participate in outreach (e.g., on topics such as stress management, depression, sexual assault prevention) throughout the internship year. Interns independently develop at least one outreach presentation during the internship. A copy of this presentation is kept in the intern’s portfolio. Interns conduct three or more outreach presentations during Fall Semester and three or more outreach presentations during Spring Semester.

Professional Development & Training

During the first 2 ½ weeks of August, interns are oriented to Counseling & Psychological Services. By participating in orientation, interns have opportunities to become acquainted with each other, as well as the staff, and to become acclimated to CAPS prior to beginning their clinical work.

Seminars and trainings are held according to the following schedule:

Activity Fall Semester Spring Semester Summer Semester
Training Seminar Weekly Weekly Weekly
Professional Development Weekly Weekly -
Diversity Seminar Monthly Monthly -
Assessment Seminar Every other week Monthly -
Supervision Seminar - Every other week -

Seminars are led by CAPS staff members or other professionals from the university and the community. Interns are expected to present during a Professional Development Meeting once each semester (Fall, Spring) on an area of strength, expertise, or interest. Interns complete an evaluation of each seminar series, “Seminar Series Evaluation,” at the conclusion of each semester.

Interns typically have opportunities to attend local conferences (e.g., the Utah University and College Counseling Centers conference) for professional development and networking. A small conference fund is available for interns to defray some of the cost. Interns may also choose to use this conference fund to support their attendance at a national conference of their choice.

Case Conference

Case Conference is held on a weekly basis and provides staff members and interns the opportunity to present and consult on a clinical case. During case conference presentations, presenters gain feedback and insight in areas including case conceptualization, interventions, cultural considerations, resources and referrals, and ethical concerns. Presenters prepare in advance by creating a written summary and by selecting a brief video clip that illustrates the client/therapist relationship and interactional style.

Interns are expected to present in Case Conference twice each semester (Fall, Spring, Summer); once on a clinical case and once on an assessment case. The first clinical case presentation should occur prior to Mid-October, to facilitate a more complete initial preliminary review. Notes from clinical case conference presentations and de-identified assessment reports are submitted to the Training Director. This material is included in the intern file and meets part of the Internship Completion Requirements. Interns are evaluated and provided with feedback on their Case Conference presentations. A copy of the completed evaluations is provided to the intern and a copy is kept in the intern’s file.

Elective Rotation

At the beginning of each semester, interns, in conjunction with their supervisor and the Training Director, develop a particular area where they would like to gain more training and experience. Interns are encouraged to develop goals for this area, and to seek out training opportunities during the semester. Interns receive one hour of supervision each week in their Elective Rotation.

Research

Interns may use up to two hours each week to work on their dissertation, research, or applications for post-docs or jobs. This time may be “banked;” for example, an intern may elect to take one day during a month rather than two hours each week. Banked time may also be used to attend professional conferences.