A Perfect Match
Posted on March 23, 2021
It’s a time of great excitement and some mild anxiety. Seven doctoral students in the University of South Alabama’s Clinical and Counseling Psychology program were matched with training sites for their clinical internships. After spending on average of four years in residence at South, the fifth year is spent at an external clinical placement. Landing an internship typically involves applying to 10-15 sites then going through an intensive application process.
“The process is long and tiring, but also rewarding in ways that go beyond that actual match,” said Nicholas Fadoir, who was matched with a Veteran’s Affairs facility in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. “Our program does a nice job of preparing you so you have the best chance of landing interviews at the top sites.”
Historically, clinic and counseling are separate traditions with different emphases. South established the combined program in 2009 and has seen considerable growth ever since. Applications increased 30-percent this year alone.
“We used to pull very locally, but now pull nationally and have multiple international students,” said Dr. Phillip Smith, professor of psychology and director of the clinical and counseling training program.
One of those doctoral students, Kristina Rossetti chose South specifically because of its integrated program.
“I wanted the value of learning from both disciplines of clinical and counseling psychology,” she said.
Rossetti landed her first choice and is heading for the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
“In almost every interview, the opening statements made by the interviewing faculty were, ‘You have such a wide variety of experiences!’ That spoke volumes to me about the quality and quantity of opportunities throughout my training at South,” she said.
This year’s doctoral students have interests ranging from veteran’s mental health and pediatric psychology, corrections and university student counseling.
“This is a group that I have been able to teach and supervise throughout their time here, Smith said. “They have been a pleasure to supervise and it's been very gratifying to watch them develop over their time here.”
Besides Fadoir and Rossetti, other doctoral students in this cohort are April Berry, Melissa Kern, Murphy Harrell, Jose Gonzalez and Steven Isaak.
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