Other Training Activities
Each intern participates in a one-hour multidisciplinary consultation team attended by all CAPS staff (psychologists, clinical counselors, social workers, psychiatrists, Postdoctoral Fellows, and Doctoral Interns). On these teams, staff and interns seek both clinical and professional consultation. Clinical consultation may involve a focus on case conceptualization, treatment and disposition planning, treatment and modalities, access, and resources. Professional consultation may focus on ethical dilemmas, system issues, and emerging topics facing mental health and college counseling clinicians.
Intern Support Group
Interns meet weekly for one hour three times a month in a private support group. The meetings are intended to provide the opportunity for interns to deepen their connections, develop mutual support and cohesiveness, and discuss their internship experience and any emerging issues or concerns. The agenda and direction of the meetings are determined by the group. The level of personal self-disclosure is determined by interns.
Monthly Meeting with the Training Director
The Training Director meets with interns to discuss general issues related to their experiences in the internship for one hour once a month, or more if appropriate. Issues such as professional development, identity as a psychologist, working collaboratively within a larger system, and managing multiple responsibilities and roles are also appropriate for this meeting. The format is an open discussion with no set sequence of topics; the focus of discussion is often related to interns’ perceptions and experience of current events within the agency and/or the training program. Concerns and feedback about the internship program may be discussed as well.
This group activity is determined by intern interest and agency needs and will vary over the course of the year. Typically early in the summer quarter, time is allotted for work on an intern project, but the actual level of activity will vary depending on the nature of the project and the time of year. A primary training goal for this activity is for interns to negotiate working as a team together.
- The 2006-2007 class made use of the Big Ten Counseling Center Conference hosted by CAPS at Northwestern in March 2007; they participated in subcommittees that planned and organized events and reviewed submitted proposals for programs.
- The 2007-2008 class created a handbook that provides clinicians with guidance and specific ideas when assessing a vast array of psychological disorders and clinical presentations.
- The 2008-2009 class hosted the summer Midwest Intern Retreat in Monticello, Illinois, where attendees were interns and training directors from seven predoctoral internship programs at university counseling centers from three states.
- The 2009-2010 class compiled information useful for the orientation of future interns who relocate to Chicago, addressing the work-life balance issues.
- The 2010-2011 class created electronic forms on the center’s scheduling and records software to increase the efficiency and convenience of everyday clinical work.
- The 2011-2012 class compiled the self-help section for students on the CAPS webpage, covering a range of psychological topics and conditions.
- The 2012-2013 class collaborated with Northwestern University Advanced Media Production Studio to create a short video that provides information about the Doctoral Internship to prospective applicants.
- The 2013-2014 class, in consultation with the International Office at NU, created an information brochure about CAPS in a number of languages.
- The 2014-2015 class created a series of psychoeducational materials on the topics of eating and body image concerns.
- The 2015-2016 class created a pamphlet about resources for socioeconomically disadvantaged students at NU.
- The 2016-2017 class reviewed and selected video recordings of group psychotherapy and compiled video clips into topics for group psychotherapy training.
- The 2017-2018 class compiled psychoeducational resources (documents, links, worksheets, videos) for mental health and well-being to be made available to students on the CAPS webpage.
- The 2018-2019 class, in collaboration with the Eating Concerns Assessment and Treatment Team (ECATT), coordinated a campus-wide outreach campaign on Body Acceptance during Eating Disorders Awareness Week in February 2019.
- The 2019-2020 class collaborated in a professional presentation at the Big Ten Counseling Centers Conference in Evanston, IL, as well as contributed to the CAPS’s planning and execution of the conference.
- The 2020-2021 class, addressing feedback from the campus community, created a visual guide to assist students in accessing services at CAPS that best meet their needs.
Optional Experience in Specialty Areas
The Doctoral Internship at CAPS is a generalist college mental-health site. Areas of specialty mentioned below are optional opportunities for additional experience that can enrich interns’ career foundation as psychologists. The specialty areas are not the focus of the internship, nor do they qualify the intern’s status as a specialist upon the completion of the internship. All interns have the same core training experience and pursue the same training goals regardless of their participation in specialty areas.
Eating Concerns Assessment and Treatment Team (ECATT)
To cultivate competencies in working with eating and body image concerns in the context of college mental health, interns can participate in ECATT, an interdisciplinary team of health professionals that meets weekly or biweekly throughout much of the academic year. Comprised of staff from CAPS and Northwestern University Health Service (NUHS), the team focuses on disordered eating and exercise, nutritional issues, and body image disturbance among Northwestern students. Members of the team also offer consultation and psychoeducational outreach to Northwestern staff, faculty, parents, peers, student organizations, and other campus partners. Interns who participate in the ECATT team will conduct specialized intake assessments to students with eating, exercise, and body image concerns, collaborate with other health professionals on the team on assessment and diagnosis, use the team’s input to develop individualized treatment recommendations, and assist students in accessing appropriate services (including higher levels of care). Interns may also contribute to Body Acceptance Week each February to raise awareness on campus about eating concerns and body image issues