Army HPSP Entry Requirements

craigfin

New Member
Feb 13, 2016
2
0
  1. Psychology Student
    Hi I read on the goarmy.com webpage that in order to apply all you need is a letter of acceptance, however I am hearing from people (and forums) that you actually have to be enrolled and taking classes. Can anyone tell me which one is correct? Also if you can answer these questions I would much appreciate it:

    1) My Bachelor level degree is in Business Administration, will the army require a Bachelor's in Psychology? I do however also have a Master's in Industrial Psychology and a MBA in General Management.

    (I am assuming no, but just want to ask to be sure. It would be common sense that if the Grad school doesn't require a Bachelor's in Psychology neither would/should the army.)

    2) Is the stipend immediate or is it only paid out during the 2 years that the army pays for your tuition?

    3) Would I also be correct to assume that those 2yrs are the last 2yrs?

    4) Is the amount of the stipend always $2k or does it fluctuate?

    Only concentrating on the stipend because at $2k (and part-time job) I can cut my expenses and maintain full-time student status (another stated requirement).
     
    Last edited:

    forcefive17

    Full Member
    5+ Year Member
    Army
    Dec 18, 2015
    104
    71
    1. Psychologist
      Hi I read on the goarmy.com webpage that in order to apply all you need is a letter of acceptance, however I am hearing from people (and forums) that you actually have to be enrolled and taking classes. Can anyone tell me which one is correct? Also if you can answer these questions I would much appreciate it:

      1) My Bachelor level degree is in Business Administration, will the army require a Bachelor's in Psychology? I do however also have a Master's in Industrial Psychology and a MBA.

      (I am assuming no, but just want to ask to be sure. It would be common sense that if the Grad school doesn't require a Bachelor's in Psychology neither would/should the army.)

      2) Is the stipend immediate or is it only paid out during the 2 years that the army pays for your tuition?

      3) Would I also be correct to assume that those 2yrs are the last 2yrs?

      4) Is the amount of the stipend always $2k or does it fluctuate?

      Only concentrating on the stipend because at $2k (and part-time job) I can cut my expenses and maintain full-time student status (another stated requirement).

      Hi there,
      The website is very misleading. The letter of acceptance is only for medical/dental students, as HPSP will pay full tuition for their entire programs. Unfortunately, the Army HPSP for clinical/counseling psychology can only be applied to the last 2 years or the last year (both 1 and 2 year scholarships available.) What that means is that you will be unable to apply until you are finishing up your second/third year of your program.

      1. Regarding your undergraduate degree, I do not believe that it matters what it is in if it's somewhat relevant. If you were able to get into a doc program with whatever degree you have, and it is a reputable program, I believe they will look past it. Now, if you are at a for-profit professional school such as Argosy, they may begin to ask questions about it. I'm also thinking that a degree in IO may be a strength for you as one of the duties of a military psychologist is operational in nature.

      2. The stipend will kick in, if you are selected, during the last two years of your program along with tuition/books. You will probably have to foot the bill through loans, assistantships, or part-time work for your first 2-3 years depending on program length.

      4. The amount of the stipend, I believe, is near $2,200 dollars/month and this amount will fluctuate. Generally, it goes up with inflation, etc. However, it does not vary based upon geographic location. It will be the same for a student in NYC as it is in rural Idaho.

      A couple other things that I would suggest are to look at the duties of a military psychologist and realize that commissioning is a life-changing event. You must be okay deploying to conflict zones while being away from loved ones for 9-12 months, getting stationed in a new location every few years, and also not be wed to the "doctor" title that we all know and love as validation of the hard work we put into graduate school. Another thing to realize is that this is a very competitive program. Finally, there are distinct differences between the HPSP program for medical school and psychology. For example, med students may have 100+ scholarships available in any given fiscal year, whereas clin/counseling psych students only have 6-8 with 3-4 X that number applying.
       
      Last edited:

      forcefive17

      Full Member
      5+ Year Member
      Army
      Dec 18, 2015
      104
      71
      1. Psychologist
        Hi there,
        The website is very misleading. The letter of acceptance is only for medical/dental students, as HPSP will pay full tuition for their entire programs. Unfortunately, the Army HPSP for clinical/counseling psychology can only be applied to the last 2 years or the last year (both 1 and 2 year scholarships available.) What that means is that you will be unable to apply until you are finishing up your second/third year of your program.

        1. Regarding your undergraduate degree, I do not believe that it matters what it is in if it's somewhat relevant. If you were able to get into a doc program with whatever degree you have, and it is a reputable program, I believe they will look past it. Now, if you are at a for-profit professional school such as Argosy, they may begin to ask questions about it. I'm also thinking that a degree in IO may be a strength for you as one of the duties of a military psychologist is operational in nature.

        2. The stipend will kick in, if you are selected, during the last two years of your program along with tuition/books. You will probably have to foot the bill through loans, assistantships, or part-time work for your first 2-3 years depending on program length.

        4. The amount of the stipend, I believe, is near $2,200 dollars/month and this amount will fluctuate. Generally, it goes up with inflation, etc. However, it does not vary based upon geographic location. It will be the same for a student in NYC as it is in rural Idaho.

        A couple other things that I would suggest are to look at the duties of a military psychologist and realize that commissioning is a life-changing event. You must be okay deploying to conflict zones while being away from loved ones for 9-12 months, getting stationed in a new location every few years, and also not be wedded to the "doctor" title that we all know and love as validation of the hard work we put into graduate school. Another thing to realize is that this is a very competitive program. I think that websites, recruiters, and MD/DO/Dental forums tend to lead us to believe if we throw in an application, we'll be automatically selected when that is no where near the truth. I've seen a few people believe they are the strongest candidate, foot the bill for two years while waiting to apply, and then end up wait-listed or not selected at all (I was wait-listed last year.) Finally, there are distinct differences between the HPSP program for medical school and psychology. For example, med students may have 100+ scholarships available in any given fiscal year, whereas clin/counseling psych students only have 6-8 with 3-4 X that number applying.

        Another thing to look at is making sure you want to serve in the military. Once you are on internship/post-doc, it's assumed that you are officer first, psychologist second. You also must be willing to serve on active duty for 3 years POST-LICENSURE. Meaning internship/post-doc do not count as time served for the purposes of whittling away at your obligation.

        If interested, I would suggest reading Military Psychology: Clinical and Operational Applications by Kennedy and Zilmer. It gives a very clear overview of duties/responsibilities/challenges as a military psychologist.
         
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        craigfin

        New Member
        Feb 13, 2016
        2
        0
        1. Psychology Student
          Thank you for your replies.

          Should had mentioned this before. I am prior service (enlisted), I was in for 3 years 7 months. It was my experiences in the army that lead me to a love of Psychology. The MBA in General Management has paid my bills, however Psychology was my love.
           

          Koogy

          Dreams, passions, & purpose = fulfillment
          Jan 4, 2015
          113
          17
            Thank you for your replies.

            Should had mentioned this before. I am prior service (enlisted), I was in for 3 years 7 months. It was my experiences in the army that lead me to a love of Psychology. The MBA in General Management has paid my bills, however Psychology was my love.
            Forcefive17 offers a good overview of the entry process.
            You do have to be enrolled in a psych (PsyD or Phd) program when you are applying. It's complicated to Know when to apply because that depends on how long your program is.

            For example, if in a 4 year doc program (which year 4 being internship) you would apply to the 2 year scholarship the fall of your first year, so that if awarded, scholarship would kick in fall of your second year, paying for second and Thierry years. Then Internship through appic For 4th year. If you match with the army for internship, you get paid full time (I believe, but check on this). If not, and you Match in civilian location, you don't get paid (Check on This too). After internship, you go active duty, and like forcefive17 said, your ticket to pay off time starts when you get licensed. Some states require you to have post doc hours for licensure, some states don't. Get licensed wherever it's easiest as the army doesn't care what state you are licensed in.

            Army also has a 1 year scholarship. So with the above scenario, if you don't get a 2 year scholarship, you can try to apply the following year. If you don't get the scholarship,You can also try to match on Appic to army internship and get in to serve that way. Last chance is to get in is through direct assention after graduation by essentially commissioning after licensure and going active duty then.

            The good (and the bad) of army HPSP is that you are not guaranteed an internship
            Slot. This is good because they want to see you work your A** of in grad shool with the training hours.
            The bad is that you are competing with civilian counterparts who want the internship slot and they may have a lot better training (or assessment/therapy prac hour accumulation) than you do.

            When applying to HPSP, keep in mind that you are a strange bird to the Med recruits command. They are more familiar with medical people. So they are not as familiar with psych programming. If u are in the DC area, however, recruit command there is very familiar with psychs as they produced a large volume of awardees in the past. So it depends on your geographical area and how well the command has recruited psych applicants in the past.
             

            Koogy

            Dreams, passions, & purpose = fulfillment
            Jan 4, 2015
            113
            17
              Also- think about joining APA div 19 student organization. You can ask for an Army HPSP
              Mentor who can help you, and also be in on all the activities and issues concerning military psychs. It's a great community and they host large networking opportunities at the annual APA conferences.
               
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