The Catholic University of America

Doctoral Internship in Health Service Psychology

About the Training Center


The Counseling Center at CUA

The Counseling Center at Catholic University is fully accredited by IACS, the International Association of Counseling Services. All of the programs at the Center are designed to contribute to the personal, educational, social, and career development of Catholic University students. The Center offers a wide range of counseling and student development services and is the only mental health facility on the campus.

The senior staff are all licensed practicing mental health professionals. Currently, in addition to the three doctoral psychology interns, the staff includes five full-time psychologists, one full-time and one part-time social worker, one part-time psychiatrist, one part-time psychologist, 10 graduate student externs, and six practicum students from the clinical psychology doctoral program at CUA.

The staff at the Center spends roughly 40 percent of time in counseling, 25 percent in training and supervision, and 20 percent in consultation, staff development, and university programs. In addition, staff participate in a variety of activities including group psychotherapy, outreach activities, teaching, committee work, administration, and research. The clinical staff represents a number of theoretical approaches to psychotherapy.  Senior staff are members of the American Psychological Association or National Association of Social Workers and have specialized training in a variety of clinical areas, including positive psychology, cognitive-behavioral therapy, psychodynamic therapy, treatment of eating disorders, sex therapy, and multicultural issues.

The Center also provides a practicum setting for CUA’s doctoral program in clinical psychology and a clinical externship for doctoral candidates from throughout the Washington-Baltimore area. The center provides supervision, clients, and agency support to the practicum students at CUA and additional opportunities for externs.  Staff are very proud of the reputation of the clinical externship housed in the Center, and they participate in the recruitment and selection of graduate students from clinical graduate programs. Interns have the opportunity to participate in these training programs in a wide variety of ways.  CUA’s clinical psychology students may also participate in clinical research for their theses and dissertations within the center.

APPIC Membership

The internship has been an APPIC member site since 2003.  It participates in the annual match and adheres to all APPIC policies and criteria.

APA Accreditation

The doctoral internship in health service psychology has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association since 2009. Questions related to the program's accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:

Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation

American Psychological Association

750 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC, 20002-4242;

Phone: 202-336-5979 / E-mail: apaaccred@apa.org

Web: http://www.apa.org/ed/accreditation

Client Population

Each year, approximately 10 percent of the undergraduate and graduate students at Catholic University request counseling services from the center. These students present with a wide variety of personal, social, educational, and vocational problems. As the internship year progresses, interns have opportunities to work with clients at a similar level of pathology as those seen by the senior staff. As interns become comfortable in the setting, the Center provides more challenging cases than are typically expected at a counseling center internship. The clientele also provides interns with opportunities to work with nontraditional students and various minority groups.

Center Facilities

The Counseling Center is located on the first floor of O’Boyle Hall.  This large building houses the Department of Education and the Department of Psychology.  The first floor of the building is home to the Counseling Center.  All senior staff and interns have private offices.  Interns' offices and the group therapy room are equipped with cameras to record sessions for supervision. In addition to individual office space, there is a conference/seminar room.  All professional staff and interns have individual desktop computing capabilities with Internet access. The extern lounge also has separate computer access for externs. Parking outside the building is available for a reasonable fee.  The university is also accessible by Washington, DC's subway system (Metro).