Staff describe CAPS Philosophy of Training

Training Program and its Philosophy

The staff of Counseling and Psychological Services and the Career Development Center have a strong commitment to training. We view ourselves as an organization in which all of us are both teachers and learners. We believe our participation in training benefits our trainees, our staff, our clients, our university and the profession of psychology. We believe that individual differences and diversity serve as catalysts for personal and environmental development. We expect all interns to identify and discuss their own world views and in turn help identify and address those of their clients. We work in a team-based model that values and expects participation of all staff. Interns are expected to become an integral part of Counseling and Psychological Services and the Career Development Center staff, and are encouraged to develop close working relationships with both departments and Student Affairs Staff.

The basis of our training program is an integrated, well-planned sequence of learning opportunities with a developmental focus. We see ourselves as practitioner-scholars who emphasize learning through practical application of evidence-based practice in psychology. Interns work with their supervisors to develop individualized learning contracts reflective of the intern’s clinical and professional goals for the year.

The program has a dual focus on both clinical training and professional growth. We expect interns will make significant developmental transitions during the year, including consolidating a professional identity, enhancing confidence in their skills and increasing their ability to function autonomously. We believe people learn and work best in a supportive, collegial atmosphere; therefore, we provide a nurturing environment in which we expect interns to stretch, take risks and grow into confident, competent, ethical psychologists.

While interns leaving the University of St. Thomas training program are well prepared for employment in a college or university counseling center, our program is generalist enough to also prepare interns for entry to a variety of employment or post-doctoral settings.