Psychology Internship Program

Essentia Health's mission is “We are called to make a healthy difference in people’s lives.” The Psychology Internship Program supports that mission by preparing new clinicians for practice in a setting that values justice, teamwork, hospitality, quality, respect, stewardship, and joy in our work.

Psychology Intern Program - Essentia Health (PIPEH) will offer three positions for the 2023-2024 training year; two interns will work primarily with adults and one intern will work primary with children and adolescents. These are full-time, one year internships equivalent to just over 2000 training hours. The purpose of the program is to prepare interns with the skills and knowledge to join the workforce as Health Service Psychologists, so that they can continue to make a healthy difference in people’s lives.

Program Structure

Allocation of Time

Interns will choose to work primarily with adults or primarily with children and adolescents. Although there are not formal rotations or tracks within the internship, opportunities exist to tailor the internship experience to specific interests. All interns begin the training year with a small outpatient therapy caseload. During months 2-4 of the internship, interns spend approximately 15 hours per week in the partial hospital setting. In this setting, interns participate in multi-disciplinary team meetings, become familiar with other professions, and practice communication with patients, families, and colleagues from other disciplines. Interns initially observe and then provide admission assessments for the programs, morning check-ins, skills groups, cope ahead planning groups, family sessions, and discharge meetings. By month four, interns may be providing up to 8 hours of direct service a week in the partial hospital setting. Interns will also maintain a small outpatient therapy caseload of six to eight patients per week. In months 5-12, interns will work primary in the Outpatient Behavioral Health setting, providing individual and/or family psychotherapy and psychological testing. When appropriate supervision is available, interns may choose to see patients in settings including Health Psychology, Rehabilitation Services, Duluth Family Medicine Clinic, Consult-Liaison Psychology, and Primary Care Collaborative Care. All interns will also complete a minimum of ten outpatient psychological evaluations during the second half of the internship year. This number of evaluations will allow for increasing independence in assessing the need for testing, choosing appropriate measures, administering and scoring testing, integrating findings, and providing feedback to patients and/or caregivers. During months 5-12, approximately 18 hours per week will be spent providing clinical services.

Orientation

Interns begin the training year with the one-day orientation provided to all new employees at Essentia Health. During the first week of internship, interns meet with the Director of Training, their primary supervisor, and their cohort. Interns complete the department-specific orientation checklist for Behavioral Health. Orientation includes a tour of the downtown campus of Duluth, the partial hospital programs, and at least one neighborhood clinic.

Training Plans and Evaluation

During the first two weeks of internship, all interns will complete a self-assessment of their strengths and areas for growth in the profession-wide competencies. They will review this self-assessment with the Training Director and their primary supervisor to develop a personalized training plan for the year. This plan may be reviewed and modified at any point during the training year as new interests, needs, or training opportunities are identified. Evaluation of the intern’s progress occurs informally and formally throughout the year. Feedback is provided during supervision and quarterly through the written intern evaluation form. This form is reviewed in a meeting between the intern, the clinical supervisor, and the Training Director. The Training Director provides formal written feedback to the Director of Clinical Training at the time of the second and fourth quarter evaluations. Additional communication with the Director of Clinical Training occurs anytime that remediation is required or there is a risk that the intern will not successfully complete the program. The Director of Training is responsible for all written communication between the internship program and the intern’s graduate school.

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