Individual Counseling and Psychotherapy
Interns spend twelve to fifteen hours each week providing individual counseling to UNC Charlotte students. The Counseling Center works within a short-term therapy framework (12 sessions per academic year), and interns also have the opportunity to see two clients on a longer-term basis. Counseling Center clients bring a wide range of personal issues to sessions. Interns have the opportunity to broaden their clinical experience base through work with a variety of client issues ranging from developmental concerns such as adjustment to college to more psychologically challenging clinical issues such as working with eating disorders, bipolar and mood disorders and trauma concerns. Among clients presenting with personal concerns, a wide variety of problems are represented, including relationship concerns, stress and anxiety management, and depression.
Our Center provides daily intake and on-call coverage to assess new clients, manage crises, and to provide consultation to the university community. Interns participate in this important service by providing three hours of intake per week. Intakes involve meeting with each client, obtaining a brief history, assessing current needs, and making decisions about the appropriate assignment of the case. During second semester, interns provide on-call coverage where they assume primary responsibility for managing emergencies, crises, and walk-ins on a rotating schedule during business hours.
Although we do not provide extensive training in the use of psychometrics, interns obtain additional experience in the objective assessment of personality, intellectual functioning and symptom inventories. They meet biweekly for didactic instruction and discussion of the theory of therapeutic assessment, each instrument, selection of clients, report writing, and feedback sessions. Instruments commonly used with our specific population include the MMPI-2, NEO-PI, BDI, BAI, TAT, Eating Disorder Inventory, and Trauma Symptom Inventory. Interns are required to complete two assessment batteries during their internship year. Each test battery will include a minimum of two testing instruments.
Process and Structured Groups
Our group program is central to the Center ‘s services and reflects the most recent advances in best practice guidelines for group psychotherapy. We currently offer five to six process oriented therapy groups each semester (including a therapy group for female survivors of sexual trauma) and numerous structured groups (e.g., How to Manage Your Moods, Peace of Mind: Mindfulness Meditation, the Empowered Black Man, the Empowered Black Woman: What does it mean to be a black student at UNC Charlotte, and Coping Skills: Calm Cool and Collected). Interns co-lead groups, both structured and process-oriented, with a senior staff member. Interns receive supervision from their group co-leaders and participate in the bi-weekly group case conference, where leaders engage in rich discussions using digital recordings. During second semester, interns typically co-lead a structured group with a Masters-level practicum student and serve as the primary group leader providing supervision and feedback to the practicum student. Interns are available to lead or co-lead a minimum of two groups per semester. The Group Therapy Questionnaire is used for pre-group selection for all group therapy members. In biweekly group case conference, leaders engage in rich discussions using digital recordings that provide training on group development, diversity issues, co-leadership dynamics, and a variety of other topics. Leaders rotate presenting group material for peer feedback and discussion.
Outreach and Consultation
Interns are required to participate in seven outreach and consultation programs per year and are given flexibility to allow many of these programs to match their specific clinical interests, including particular topics and/or serving particular communities on campus. In order to ensure the intern has exposure to the various components of outreach and consultation, as reflected in our Outreach Mission Statement, no more than three of the seven outreach and consultation programs may be tabled events and liaison relationship building. In addition to the seven outreach and consultation programs, interns will also be required to complete a Wellness Passport Program in the fall semester and a year-long Community In-Reach Project (CIP), both with the mentorship and support of the senior staff.
Interns will provide individual supervision for a doctoral-level counseling or psychology practicum student in the Spring semester. This supervision is in turn supervised by a senior staff member. Supervision of supervision is provided in a supportive group environment, where issues such as supervisor development, learning training concepts, use of self in supervision, supervisee concerns, and other relevant issues are addressed.