The Priority Behavioral Health Internship Program at the College of Health Science and Technology (CHST) at Rochester Institute of Technology is a consortium internship training program in psychology. The training program represents a cooperative endeavor between RIT’s College of Health Science and Technology and clinical placement sites within Rochester Regional Health, Hillside Family of Agencies, and Coordinate Care Services Inc (CCSI). Rochester Institute of Technology’s College of Health Science and Technology functions as one of the clinical sites as well as a hub for the internship faculty, didactic training, and administrative processes.
This internship year is first and foremost a supervised, intensive, experiential learning opportunity focused on the delivery of psychological services. The program embraces a scientist-practitioner model in which theory and evidence routinely inform professional practice and each intern has protected time to pursue a scholarly activity that can center on research, program evaluation, clinical care, or education. The training is competency-based. Each intern will have a year-long primary placement at one of the clinical sites. While in their primary clinical settings, interns provide supervised behavioral health intervention and assessment services to individuals from diverse backgrounds. Intervention may include individual, group, and/or family therapy, and may be provided for children, adolescents and/or adults, depending on the primary clinical placement. Psychological assessment is also provided at each placement site, and interns are expected to administer, interpret, and provide written synthesis of psychological test batteries. Therapy clients, number of assessments, consultation work, and research vary depending on the specific site. Interns across clinical sites have the opportunity to gain experience working with and consulting across a variety of disciplines as a major component of their training program, as each primary placement involves collaboration across various systems of care. Experiences may involve collaboration and consultation with various agencies and/or providers within multiple care disciplines and settings.
Our training and education program is dedicated to developing the next generation of leaders in the field using innovative and advanced technologies (e.g, Telehealth and Technology Assisted Interactive Tools for Clients), which is a core mission and trademark of RIT. All interns are provided with didactic and experiential training in the use of telehealth and interactive therapeutic technologies. Specifically, all interns are provided with the opportunity to engage in both in-person and telehealth treatment with homeless clients.
All interns are expected to conduct research at the internship sites through at least one ongoing scholar project, the focus of which is determined collaboratively between the primary supervisors and the intern. For more information on possible research areas please visit: Favtech | RIT
A priority is placed on professional development, including assistance to doctoral fellows in securing opportunities after internship such as post-doctoral fellowships and employment. Our clinical sites have an interest in hiring the next generation of leaders.
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Evidence-based practice in intervention
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Evidence-based practice in assessment
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Ethical and legal standards
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Individual and cultural diversity
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Research
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Professional values and attitudes
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Consultation/interprofessional/interdisciplinary
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Supervision
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of Telehealth and Interactive Therapeutic Technologies
Interns will achieve competence appropriate to their professional developmental level in the area of clinical leadership and career development within ambulatory behavioral health clinical sites.
APPIC: Our program is a member of APPIC.
APA: Our program is APA accredited.
Questions related to the program’s accreditation status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:
Structure: Interns in this program are referred to as "psychology interns." The internship begins on July 1 and concludes on June 30 of each academic year. Placement-Full-Time, Full Year, 40 hours/week.
Primary placement, 1 full year, 4 days per week at any one or combination of the following sites and 1 day at Rochester Institute of Technology’s main campus for additional supervision, didactics, clinical discussions and scholar activities:
CCSI, Coordinated Care Services, Incorporated provides a broad array of consulting services specifically tailored to meet the needs of behavioral and physical healthcare providers, social and human service departments, state agencies, school districts and community-based organization in Monroe County, across New York State, and beyond. CCSI’s Consulting Services includes strategic analytics, education, quality improvement, practice transformation (trauma-informed care, DEI), fiscal practice improvement and digital solutions and technology.
The CCSI Clinical Rotation would provide trainees with opportunities to develop skills in systems level intervention and transformation with the general goals of increasing access to quality healthcare services for underserved populations, improving lives, and strengthening communities. Potential areas of intervention include organizations in behavioral, mental, and physical health, community-based organizations, education (K-12 and higher education, faith-based organizations, and government agencies. Interns function as a member of the project team and activities include conducting literature reviews, observations and focus groups, identifying and measuring outcomes, supporting the transition to a new model of care, creating informative and action-oriented reports for agencies and communities, and presenting information on topics of interest to organizations. Interns will obtain specific experience supporting trauma-informed care and diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. This rotation will also allow interns to have access to a number of datasets at CCSI from which to develop a research project that is of interest to both CCSI and the intern (Medicaid claims data for NYS, Adverse Childhood Experiences, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, as well as impact of state dollars on system transformation efforts). Interns will also be providing assessments, psychological testing, and evidence-based care to children/youth with behavioral health treatment needs at Genesee Mental Health Clinic through Rochester Regional Health.
The RRH Clinical rotation will provide trainees with opportunities at outpatient mental health clinics including RRH’s Evelyn Brandon Health Clinic, Greece Mental Health Clinic, and Genesee Mental Health Clinic. Four interns are placed within clinics treating adult (18+) clients and two interns are placed within the child and adolescent program at Genesee Mental Health. The psychiatric characteristics of clients treated includes the full diagnostic range of the DSM-5. Interns across clinics have the opportunity to conduct individual therapy, family therapy, and group therapy. Interns will also engage in psychological assessment in order to provide differential diagnoses and recommendations for ongoing treatment/referrals. Interns will learn efficient evaluation and report writing procedures. Interns at RRH work closely with a multi-disciplinary team of licensed social workers, licensed mental health counselors, substance abuse counselors, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychiatrists. Lastly, interns are provided with leadership opportunities including presentations at staff meetings, best-practice presentations, practicum student supervision, and participation in program development and behavioral health research projects.
The Hillside Family of Agencies is a non-profit organization consisting of more than 100 coordinated programs in 41 locations across New York and Maryland which provide comprehensive health, education, and human services for children and families. Two Hillside facilities are utilized for internship training. Interns work in two sites, with interns placed at the Children’s Center’s Monroe Campus. Currently, the Hillside rotations provide training in two child track rotations. The placements are located at one of Hillside Family of Agencies' residential treatment centers in and around Rochester, NY. Interns at this placement site work as part of a multidisciplinary team treating youth placed in residential care from across New York State. The intern is responsible for psychological evaluations, consultation with the treatment team including family and external funders, and delivery of evidence-based group and individual therapy. Interns placed with the Hillside Family of Agencies will work directly with youth and families who have experienced complex and intergenerational trauma. Evidence practices used include dialectical behavior therapy and trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy.
Neuropsychology interns at the Rochester Regional Health Neurosciences Institute receive supervision from a team of postdoctorally trained neuropsychologists who are also licensed psychologists. The interns conduct evaluations with a wide variety of neurological populations, with etiologies including ischemic stroke, cerebral hemorrhage, the spectrum of traumatic brain injuries (mTBI/concussion to severe), anoxic brain injury, brain tumor, metabolic and other encephalopathies, neurodegenerative disease/dementias, autoimmune neurologic disorders (such as multiple sclerosis), psychiatric disorders presenting with primary cognitive disorders and others. The age of patients served ranges from infant to geriatric. Interns will gain experience within our comprehensive inpatient rehabilitation program and our various outpatient clinics. Substance or alcohol abuse or other psychiatric conditions can be complicating factors that can be the main reason for evaluation or a significant aspect of the patient’s history.
Within the comprehensive inpatient rehabilitation program, interns will assess and treat the widest diversity of ages, neurological conditions, including etiologies noted above as well as traumatic or nontraumatic spinal cord injuries. Interns will learn efficient evaluation and report writing procedures and hone psychotherapy skills within the inpatient setting. There will also be opportunities to assess emotional functioning and provide psychotherapy with patients with non-neurological etiologies, such as orthopedic injuries or limb loss. Interdisciplinary collaboration and presentations at staff conferences are regular components of the intern’s inpatient rehabilitation experience.
The outpatient clinics provide opportunity for more comprehensive neuropsychological assessment with a variety of patient populations. The memory clinic provides neuropsychological evaluation with adult and geriatric patients to assist with differential diagnostic clarification including dementia subtypes versus other neurological or psychiatric factors. At the memory clinic, interns will collaborate with our neurology partners, including the opportunity to learn about advanced neuroimagery. In addition, the concussion clinic exposes the intern to the complexities of postconcussion disorder that can often have premorbid and psychological factors that may prolong and exacerbate the symptoms. Furthermore, the general outpatient neuropsychological clinic provides a context for training in comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation and report writing with a wide range of neurological patient populations. Interns may also provide psychotherapy with neurological patients in the outpatient context, addressing emotional adjustment, coping, and existential concerns.
Interns rotate through the inpatient program and all major outpatient clinics. In addition, they participate in didactics reviewing neuroanatomy, clinical disorders, as well as neuroradiology rounds. There are also opportunities for intern involvement in stroke and dementia support groups, as well as opportunities to supervise practicum/extern students.
The RIT primary rotation involves clinical work with Priority Behavioral Health’s outpatient clinic (located at RIT) as well as a forensic rotation and work with House of Mercy homeless shelter. At RIT’s Priority Behavioral Health outpatient clinic, interns will conduct evidence-based treatment and psychological assessment. Interns will work with both children and adults. Interns will provide behavioral health screenings and consultations as well as evidence-based treatment (e.g., CBT, MET, mindfulness). Interns will be trained in the use of digital therapies and telehealth. Interns will also consult and collaborate with referring medical providers. In addition to the clinical work conducted at RIT’s Priority Behavioral Health Clinic, interns are expected to provide clinical care to homeless individuals residing at House of Mercy. Interns will conduct intakes as well as individual/group therapy (e.g., mindfulness, CBT) with homeless clients. Interns will be trained in crisis management and harm reduction and interns will be expected to consult and collaborate with House of Mercy staff and leadership in order to improve mental health and substance use care for homeless clients. Lastly, this clinical site emphasizes the use of tele-health services and incorporating advancements in technology within behavioral health and substance use treatment. Interns placed at the RIT site will have the opportunity to engage in research related to substance use and intimate partner violence and research utilizing avatar-assisted platforms for patient care.
Interns will have the opportunity to partake in state of the art, ongoing research by participating in any one of the following projects:
Behavioral Health Clinic and Research
Family Violence & Addiction Interventions & Research; Clinical Research & Forensics. This involves ongoing clinical trials and/or secondary data analyses from NIH funded research or other active grant protocols (Drs. Easton and Crane);
Medical Interactive Therapy Research & Interactive Technologies (e.g., Research utilizing Virtual and Simulated Therapeutic Environments). This involves field-testing Virtual Reality Technologies and Avatar Therapy Platforms ground in CBT to clients with addiction and co-occurring aggressive behaviors. Additionally, the Avatar platforms have been adapted for use with at-risk male and female juveniles who need help decreasing substance misuse and conflict (Drs. Doolittle, Easton, Crane, and Berbary).
The Center for Clinical Systems Biology is a research center within RRH focusing on understanding immune dysfunction and autoimmunity from an integrated systems perspective. In particular, the research focuses on investigating how subtle imbalances in the interplay between the immune system’s multiple components as well as its interactions with the endocrine and nervous systems may lead to complex chronic immune and neuro-immune disorders that continue to defy a conventional one piece at a time approach. Interns with a background in psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) are provided the opportunity to engage in research studying the characteristic network biology and bio-behavioral dynamics of complex chronic bringing a new perspective to understanding the molecular underpinnings of symptomatology and developing more effective treatment approaches. Interns within this rotation will also receive training and provide clinical care to patients within RIT’s Priority Behavioral Health Clinic.
RIT/CHST BEHAVIORAL HEALTH CLINICAL & SCHOLAR INITIATIVES
Interns will have the opportunity to partake in state of the art, on-going research by participating in any one of the following projects:
CHST’s Behavioral Health Clinic and Research
Family Violence & Addiction Interventions & Research; Clinical Research & Forensics. This involves on-going clinical trials and/or secondary data analyses from NIH funded research or other active grant protocols (Drs. Easton and Crane);
Medical Interactive Therapy Research & Interactive Technologies (e.g., Research utilizing Virtual and Simulated Therapeutic Environments). This involves field-testing Virtual Reality Technologies and Avatar Therapy Platforms ground in CBT to clients with addiction and co-occurring aggressive behaviors. Additionally, the Avatar platforms have been adapted for use with at risk male and female juveniles who need help decreasing substance misuse and conflict (Drs. Doolittle and Easton).
Primary Placement: Rochester Institute of Technology’s College of Health Science and Technology functions as the hub for the internship faculty, didactic training, and administrative processes. Interns are matched to one of the following clinical placements; RIT Priority Behavioral Health Clinic, RRH Behavioral Health Adult Outpatient, RRH Behavioral Health Child/Adolescent Outpatient, RRH Neurosciences Institute, RRH Center for Clinical Systems Biology/RIT Priority Behavioral Health Clinic, Hillside Family of Agencies, or Coordinate Care Services Inc (CCSI).
All interns regardless of primary placement, are involved in providing services to clients at House of Mercy homeless shelter.
Telehealth and Interactive Technologies are inherently a part of the training given RIT’s expertise in the advancements of science and technology.
In addition to site-specific requirements and activities, interns will learn to hone skills in MET, CBT, DBT, and Dual Diagnosis, Integrative Care interventions, further develop integrative report writing; build an effective therapeutic alliance with clients; improve assessment and case formulation skills; improve case management and referral skills; and develop skills in integrated addiction and trauma/aggression-centered therapies.
The training opportunities enriching experience for interns coming from training backgrounds in mental health, adult psychiatry, child psychiatry (both inpatient and outpatient), substance use and/or forensic psychology. For interns who come from a substance use education or training background (e.g., practicum experience, coursework), this internship provides the opportunity to learn about the interaction between substance use disorders and illegal behaviors. Up to 80% of addicted populations have criminal justice involvement, and fellows with prior substance use training gain essential understanding of the interplay between addiction, mental illness and criminal justice involvement through engagement with the courts, probation, and parole. The Priority Behavioral Health Internship program allows an exciting opportunity for trainees to diversify their clinical and research skills and to enhance these skills through work with a unique and diverse clinical population.
Interns will receive training in the following evidence-based practices: cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), trauma-informed care, motivational interviewing (MI) and motivational enhancement therapy (MET) for addiction, relapse prevention, and integrated substance abuse and domestic violence (SADV) therapy. Training occurs through site-specific clinical trainings that occur at the beginning of the internship year, ongoing supervision by clinical supervisors, and a resource library for use by all trainees and staff.
Interns attend a weekly seminar series/didactics with clinical experts within the community. Interns will be able to observe and/or listen to presentations on diverse topics pertaining to current research on evidence based psychotherapy, assessment, consultation, trauma-informed practice, addiction research, ethics, professionalism, multiculturalism and diversity, interactive technologies, and telehealth as well as additional topics.
Research and Scholarship
All Interns are expected to conduct research at the internship sites through at least one ongoing “scholar project”, the focus of which is determined collaboratively between the primary supervisors and the intern. Interns are encouraged to focus their scholar project on substance use research and/or interactive technology.
Interns present their scholar project to their cohort, faculty, and community leaders at the end of the internship. Interns also present their scholarly work at RIT’s Graduate Education Week and Showcase.
2020 Winner in the Substance Abuse poster presentation category:
Examining Perceptions of Therapeutic Alliance and Treatment Outcomes in a Sample of Substance Using Offenders of IPV
2020 Winner in the Psychology, Relationships, and Mental Health II poster presentation category:
Psychosocial consequences of COVID-19 among college students
Interns may work with RIT faculty on substance use and violence research as well as research focusing on incorporating advancements in technology within clinical care. Intern may be involved in grant-funded clinical research focused on the development of efficacious treatments for addiction, trauma, and violence including psychotherapy treatment trials. Interns have the opportunity to attend research seminars, meetings, and writing scholarly projects with faculty associated with addiction-focused NIH-funded or foundation-funded research located within CHST’s School of Behavioral Health. Visit our website Forensic, Addiction and Violence Research with Interactive Technologies.
Local, National and International Research and Scholarship
All Interns receive at least 4 hours of supervision per week. Two of these hours are provided by licensed psychologists who oversee the interns’ clinical work at the primary placements, and additional hours are provided by training faculty at RIT. Interns also receive additional supervision at their clinical training site, which may be provided in individual and/or group format and may be provided by allied health providers. This level of intensive supervision is intended to ensure that interns are adhering to best practice procedures and are achieving competence in all of the Internship program’s required goal areas.
Caroline Easton, PhD, Training Director and Supervisor
Cory Crane, PhD, Supervisor
Cassandra Berbary, PhD, Supervisor
Rupa Kalahasthi, PsyD, Post-Doctoral Associate
Celeste Sangiorgio, PhD, Post-Doctoral Associate
Tory Toole, PhD, Post-Doctoral Associate
Jacob Wadsworth, PhD, Post-Doctoral Associate
Christopher Dehon, PhD, Supervisor
Taylor Dreste, PhD, Post-Doctoral Associate
Rochester Regional Health
Cassandra Berbary, PhD, Supervisor
Gordon Broderick, PhD, Research Supervisor
Krista M. Damann, PhD, Supervisor
Tanya R. Grace, PsyD, Supervisor
Marc D. Gaudette, PsyD, Supervisor
Melinda Ann Patterson, PsyD, Supervisor
William N. Schneider, PhD, Supervisor
Garry Spink, PhD, Supervisor
Elizabeth Meeker, PsyD, Supervisor
Additional Training Faculty
Brian Amos, PhD, Supervisor
Sarah Donovan, PsyD, Supervisor
Briannon O’Connor, PhD, Supervisor
Clarissa Wood, PhD, Supervisor
Dr. Caroline Easton, an alumni of RIT (1990), is a Professor of Forensic Psychology in the new College of Health Science and Technology at RIT. She served as a senior faculty member at Yale’s School of Medicine for 17 years, directed both the pre-doctoral training program and the Forensic Drug Diversion Clinic. Dr. Easton was recently hired to build new education and training programs pertaining to Behavioral Health within CHST. She will also serve as the Clinical Director of the new Behavioral Health Sciences Clinic.
Dr. Easton’s scholarly interests pertain to her expertise within Forensic and Addiction Psychiatry. More specifically, she has numerous publications related to ‘best practice procedures’ for the treatment of clients with co-occurring addiction and Intimate Partner Violence (IPV). She presents at international/national conferences, publishes in peer-reviewed journals and has received funding on grants from the National Institute of Health, the Donaghue Foundation, CT’s Department of Addiction and Mental Health Services, Monroe County’s Office of Mental Health, the Socio-Legal Center and the U.K.
On the international level, Dr. Easton currently collaborates with Investigators from London, England, Hong Kong, Australia, Spain, Scotland, Brazil, and Canada regarding the treatment of family violence among substance abusers. On a national level, Dr. Easton continues to consult with the state of CT on Policy and Procedures for Family Violence Treatment Reform. She continues as Clinical Faculty within Yale’s School of Medicine. On the community level, Dr. Easton provides consultation, evaluation and/or treatment services for the Monroe County’s Office of Mental Health, the Socio-Legal Center, Rochester’s Regional Healthcare System, Catholic Family Services and the Criminal Justice System.
Research Areas: Evaluating assessment tools & brief interventions for the perpetration of domestic and intimate partner violence, developing methodologies to study the proximal relationship between alcohol use and subsequent aggression
Dr. Crane specializes in forensics, focusing primarily on the intersection of substance use and violent or aggressive behavior. He is jointly affiliated with the Rochester Institute of Technology and the Canandaigua Veterans Affairs Medical Center. For a complete list of Dr. Crane's publications, please explore his ResearchGate site.
Teaches: Diagnosing the Criminal Mind, Researching the Criminal Mind
Research Areas:Dr. Berbary’s research focuses on the treatment of co-occurring substance use and aggression among youth. She is jointly affiliated with the Rochester Institute of Technology and Rochester Regional Health. Her clinical work with Rochester Regional Health involves consultation and psychological assessment with at-risk youth in outpatient settings.
Didactic Seminar Series
Interns receive 2 hours of didactic training each week. Didactic training is incorporated to further support interns’ continued growth and development. Didactic training includes training provided by RIT faculty, consortium supervisors, and experts and professionals from the community. Didactic training focuses on the training program competencies and includes topics such as; multiculturalism and diversity; professionalism; evidence-based therapy; assessment and report writing; trauma-informed care; self-care and vicarious trauma; substance use prevention, intervention, recovery, and research; forensic psychology; consultation; program evaluation; ethics; interactive technology; additional special topics.
Stipends are provided in the amount of $28,352. A health insurance stipend will be provided for full health coverage under RIT’s student policy. Interns are eligible to enroll in student health coverage. Interns will be provided with office space, computers, and access to RIT’s IT and administrative support.
Application Process and Selection Criteria
Students interested in applying for the internship program should submit an online application through the APPIC website (www.appic.org).
Application due date: December 1st
All application materials must be received by the APPIC deadline in order to be considered. Applicants who are invited to interview will be notified by email. Interviews will be scheduled in January/February and will occur either in person or via videoconference.
A complete application consists of the following materials:
A completed Online AAPI (APPIC’s standard application)
Cover letter (part of online AAPI)
A current Curriculum Vitae (as part of the online AAPI)
Three Standardized Reference Forms, two of which must be from persons who have directly supervised your clinical work (as part of the online AAPI). Please submit no more than three letters
Official transcripts of all graduate coursework
Supplementary materials: a) One full integrated assessment report (please redact appropriately) and b) a one-page clinical case conceptualization
*All samples must be de-identified, removing all identifying client information. Breaches of confidentiality within submitted samples will disqualify your application for further consideration and your program’s Director of Clinical Training will be notified.
The program bases its selection process on the entire application package noted above; however, applicants who have met the following qualifications prior to beginning the internship are considered preferred:
Preferred. Minimum of 500 intervention hours (experience with CBT, MET, DBT, Trauma-Focused Interventions
Preferred. Minimum of 500 assessment hours (experience administering cognitive, neuropsychological, personality measures with experience in integrative Report Writing)
Preferred. Dissertation proposal defended or data collected/ date set.
Interest in Telehealth and Interactive Technologies
Some experience or special interest in working with diverse populations and/or in rural areas
In addition to the above consortium-wide preferences, RIT will consider specific aspects of the applicant’s experience, interests, and training goals in determining an applicant’s potential “fit” with individual clinical training sites. Applicants are encouraged to carefully review the descriptions of the training sites and to highlight areas of perceived fit within their cover letters.
All interns who match to RIT must successfully pass a background check conducted by RIT, as well as obtain a TB test, and vaccination records before beginning employment. Applicants are advised that the internship requires regular travel between training sites, and thus Interns must have consistent access to reliable transportation.
This internship site agrees to abide by the APPIC policy that no person at this training facility will solicit, accept, or use any ranking-related information from any intern applicant.
Questions regarding the selection process may be directed to the Training Director, Dr. Caroline Easton, at email@example.com.
Applicant and Intern Resources
Evaluation Surveys: Formal evaluations are completed 3 times a year, during the year and serve as a review of progress on training goals and core competencies. To progress in the program and to successfully complete the program, interns must demonstrate minimum levels of achievement across all required training competencies. Evaluations are conducted using a standard rating form, which includes comment spaces where supervisors include specific written feedback regarding the interns’ performance and progress. Supervisors will review these evaluations with the interns and provide an opportunity for discussion if the intern has questions or concerns about the feedback. Interns are also provided the opportunity to submit and review supervisor evaluations 3 times a year.
According to federal funding regulations, HRSA funded intern applicants are subject to additional eligibility criteria per Funding Opportunity Announcement (NOFO), HRSA19002. Intern applicants for the HRSA funded positions must be in an APA accredited program, a citizen of the United States, a non-citizen national of the United States, or a foreign national who possesses a visa permitting permanent residence in the United States. Individuals on a temporary or student visa are not eligible for HRSA funded internship slots. Applicants will be required to verify their compliance with this citizen/visa status prior to award of any federal funding.
Training Clinical Psychology Interns to use Evidence-Based Care Models and Tele-Behavioral Health Technology to Treat OUD and SUD in Monroe County
The APA-accredited “Priority Behavioral Health Internship Program” at the College of Health Science and Technology (CHST) of Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) proposes to increase the number of doctoral psychology interns trained to provide culturally-competent, interdisciplinary behavioral health and substance use services for the highly underserved communities of Monroe County in upstate New York. Monroe County is a rural area facing considerable behavioral health workforce challenges. The internship program is a key resource in the area both for providing behavioral healthcare to underserved citizens as well as providing high-quality interdisciplinary training.
The program aims to improve the doctoral psychology internship program’s capacity to train psychology interns in behavioral health and substance use prevention and treatment. Specifically, funding will be used to train 21 additional interns during the grant period, with 7 internship slots added in each grant year. Grant funding will allow for enhancement of the current interdisciplinary training in Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and other Substance Use Disorder (SUD), as well as the increased provision of training in tele-behavioral health. The specific, measurable objectives associated with the proposed project are as follows: 1) Between September 2019 and August 2022, add a total of 21 intern training positions with a focus on OUD/SUD services for underserved populations; 2) Between September 2019 and August 2022, the program’s existing integrated care training curriculum will be enhanced through the addition of new annual training activities and rotations; 3) By August 2022, the program will have improved its training of psychology interns in OUD/SUD through faculty development; 4) By August 2022, the local healthcare workforce will be expanded and enhanced through the retention of at least 60% of trainees. All project activities have been developed with an emphasis on training interns to provide culturally competent care for vulnerable, diverse, and underserved populations
This program is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under D40HP33360 and Graduate Psychology Education Programs as part of an award (Training Clinical Psychology Interns to use Evidence-Based Care Models and Tele-Behavioral Health Technology to Treat OUD and SUD in Monroe County) totaling $1,341,194 with 0% non-governmental sources. The information provided on this website is that of the internship program and director and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.
Expanding Evidence-Based Mental Health and Integration of Care Models among Children and Adolescents in Upstate New York via an Accredited Doctoral Psychology Internship Training Program
The APA-accredited “Priority Behavioral Health Internship Program” at the College of Health Science and Technology (CHST) of Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) aims to increase training opportunities and the number of doctoral psychology interns trained to provide culturally-competent, interdisciplinary behavioral health services for children, adolescents, and transitional youth in highly underserved communities of Monroe County in upstate New York. Monroe County is facing considerable behavioral health workforce challenges. The internship program is a key resource in the area both for providing behavioral healthcare to underserved citizens as well as providing high-quality interdisciplinary training.
This project will improve the clinical psychology internship program’s capacity to train psychology interns in integrated behavioral health and primary care settings with a focus on the treatment of children, adolescents, and transitional age youth. Specifically, funding will be used to train32 additional interns during the grant period, with 6 internship slots in year 1, 6 internship slots in year 2, 10 internship slots in year 3, and 10 internship slots in year 4. Grant funding allows for enhancement of integrated care training as well as the increased provision of training in 1) utilizing advancements in technology within integrated treatment; 2) addressing co-occurring disorders (OUD/SUD and mental health) among youth, and 3) prevention and treatment related to violence exposure among youth. The specific, measurable objectives associated with the proposed project are as follows: 1) Between July 2021 and June 2025, add a total of 32 intern training positions with a focus on providing behavioral health services to children, adolescents, and transitional youth in integrated care settings; 2) Between July 2021 and June 2025, the program’s existing integrated care training curriculum will be enhanced through the addition of new annual training activities and rotations; 3) Between July 2021 and June 2025 the program will have improved its training of psychology interns in integrated care through faculty development; 4) By June 2025, the local healthcare workforce will be expanded and enhanced through the retention of at least 50% of trainees. All project activities have been developed with an emphasis on training interns to provide culturally competent care for vulnerable, diverse, and underserved children, adolescents, and transitional age youth.
This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA-21-089) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $1,510,162 with 0% financed with non-governmental sources. The information provided on this website is that of the internship program and director and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.
Internship Admissions, Support, and Initial Placement Data
Past Intern Cohorts
Top left to right: Taylor Dreste, Jacob Wadsworth, Jonathan ‘Tory’ Toole
Bottom left to right: Alesia Allen, Courtney Chappell, Anna Pignatiello, Rupa Kalahasthi
Top left to right: Melissa Morton, Kayla Kleinman, Alexis Liberto, Martha Golubski,
Alessandra Perez, Jenna Steinmiller, Kane Williams, Justin Gardner, John Mansoor
Bottom left to right: Stephanie Rovig, Mary Moussa Rogers, Celeste Sangiorgio
From Left to Right: Tim Baer, Eljada Gjoka, Dustin Haraden, Noora Abdulkerim,
Jaime Blackmon, Constance Rose, Thomas Chacko, Leah Ward, Siena Tugendrajch,
Johnathan Wright, Joanne Raptis, Kayci Hauser
From Left to Right: Mini Mathai, Kalpana Sundaram, Marielsy Pimentel, Kristy Kelley,
Deon Allen, Qian Li