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Internship interviews for future profs

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by JockNerd, Dec 21, 2008.

  1. JockNerd

    5+ Year Member

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    I asked this a while ago but didn't get much response at the time. Now might be a better time :)

    How are people headed for an academic career handling internship interviews? When I apply it's looking like I'll have several pubs and a pretty laughable number of clinical hours. I hear conflicting things about this, from advice to leave some publications off my vita when I apply, to sites wanting people who've published lots. For people who are doing or have done interviews and who are pretty clearly on an academic route, how are you finding reactions to your application? Anything come up about it during interviews?

    I'm thinking in particular for sites like counseling centers or forensic settings, since I'm not neuro-track (but I'm sure some neuro people are curious about this too).
     
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  3. cmuhooligan

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    I'm not sure about counseling centers, since I applied to academic medical centers, but I think I can add my 2 cents to research-oriented sites in general. I think that the really research-focused applicants are at a disadvantage compared to clinically-oriented students. This is because there really aren't many 2nd-tier research-emphasis internship sites. It seems that most sites which really make an effort to incorporate research significantly into training tend to be very very competitive. That's not to say that there aren't very very competitive clinical sites as well, but, there also is a much wider range of competitiveness for these sites.
     
  4. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty
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    You can find some sites that offer protected research time, a research rotation, and/or additional funding for research.....however you may need to dig a bit to find the ones that aren't the Biggies. I'm not looking to be a primary researcher, but some of the sites I applied to had formal rotations and/or nice opportunities for people who need to get their clinical hours in.....but want to go back into academia.
     
  5. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member
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    Yeah, it's big-time or bust.
     
  6. JockNerd

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    To clarify: I don't think I necessarily need to get a match with a site that gives me a ton of research time. My question was more, how are people who are clearly headed for academia finding their applications being handled? Are balanced or service-oriented sites (such as student counseling centers) open to people who are pretty clearly on an academic track, or are people encountering resistance?
     
  7. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member
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    Jock,

    I know that one VA I applied to (that actually has a rather well known researcher) told me straight up that I belonged at an academic medical center. My guess is these sites look at your vitae, where you went to school, your #s of publications and presentations, and rule you out. That's why it's big-time or bust. Once you pass a certain threshold, you're going to Brown, UCLA, UChicago, UIC, Emory, UNC, MUSC, Yale, Palo Alto, etc. . . or nowhere.
     
  8. orthogonal

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    I consider myself an academic researcher and someone looking for a faculty position following graduate school. I cant tell you that I applied primarily to VAs and medical schools. Previous folks from my program who had similar goals did not get any interviews from counseling centers. The counseling centers assume you are attempting to use them as a back up, plus they want someone much more clinically-focused.

    I spent a great deal of time getting as much clinical (therapy/assessment) hours as I did doing research. It was a lot of work but I think it helped me with my applications. I would suggest doing some hardcore clinical work between now and when you apply. The pubs will look great for when you apply for an academic position but internship is a clinical year first and foremost. Most of the interview questions center around your clinical experiences and case conceptualization, and less so on your research (the most I have been asked is about my dissertation).
     
  9. JockNerd

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    Ok, thanks for the input so far guys. JS, thanks for the honest answer, it helps me out. I guess an added complication for me is that I'm not a US citizen, so VAs are totally out. I am in a counseling psych program, so maybe that would help with CC internships. Orth, thanks for the tips! I'm pretty hesitant to take on a lot more clinical work in training, but I've got some cool opportunities coming up next year (working with sex offenders) that might count as "hardcore."
     
  10. orthogonal

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    Good to have a plan! I do want to point out that it isn't about the number of hours your spend doing it but the diversity of the experiences and the fit with the programs you apply to so go for it. We've had at least 3-4 people apply from our program with 9-10 publications and few clinical experiences and they did not match...so just make sure you get your bases covered!
     
  11. Eruca

    Eruca predoctoral psych intern
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    I think I'm a bit confused by the original question. Most people I know who are aiming for academic careers are applying to sites where you have some opportunity to carry on a line of research (UCSF, Brown, Duke, etc). If you look at the numbers for APPIC sites, counseling centers typically take on people who have considerable clinical experience. Counseling centers also tend to care more about outreach, multicultural and diversity of clinical experiences (not publications).

    Maybe I'm confusing what you mean by academic career? Most people mean tenure-track university positions (which requires continued research productivity). I'm not sure a counseling center is the route to this particular goal. ? Though maybe others can speak to this? (I'm currently interviewing for internships, in case that helps to know).
     
  12. JockNerd

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    I'm in a counseling psych program. Counseling Center positions are typically easier for us to get. And since I'm not neuro and my research isn't super health-focused it's harder to justify my existence at, say, a medical center.

    By Academic I meant tenure-track faculty.

    CCs don't actually require a super high clinical focus if you look at appic data; go in an look at min. hours for selected people, it varies widely and as low as 100s or 200s.

    My adviser, say, did her internship at a counseling center, having only a few hundred hours of clinical exp., and is now tenured faculty at a good uni.
     
    #11 JockNerd, Dec 29, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2008
  13. Eruca

    Eruca predoctoral psych intern
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    Hi jocknerd. All good info. I'm in a clinical phd program at a research univ., so maybe it's that the professors I'm around are ones who did their internships at more research-oriented sites. Also the students in our program who have chosen counseling centers have only been those who didn't want academic careers. Good to know one isn't stuck in any one domain!

    I just applied to a few counseling programs, and you're right, they do favor counseling psych students. Although the ones I applied to also tended to take students with a lot of clinical hours (but that was a very small n).

    Are your stats and interests typical of other people in your program? Looking to advanced (or graduated students) in your program is one of the best ways to see what possibilities and chances you have. And I'd have to echo the suggestions above about getting more clinical experience..unless the sites you have your eye on aren't ultra-competitive. After getting many rejections with really good credentials, I'll tell you it's harsh out there! That my 2-cents anyway :)
     

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