The Graduate Training Practica In Psychology at The McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent

The Graduate Training Practica In Psychology
The McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent
Mental Health Programs
Boston, Massachusetts
2013-2014 Academic Year
Application Packet
November, 2012
Dear Practicum Applicant:
Thank you for requesting information about the 2013-2014 Advanced Practicum & Practicum
Programs in Psychology at the McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent Inpatient Mental Health
Program. You will find position descriptions, a program description, and a formal application
accompanying this letter. An applicant checklist is also included to assist you in making your
application complete.
Please send all of the required information as a combined packet, or email to Pat Speros as noted
You may contact me by email at [email protected] with questions regarding your
application or the practicum experiences. You can also contact my assistant, Pat Speros, with
practical questions about the program or application at [email protected] . Admissions are rolling,
but positions will be filled as qualified applicants are identified. Thank you again for your interest.
We look forward to reviewing your application and knowing more about you.
Ralph J. Buonopane, Ph.D.
Program Director
McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent Inpatient Mental Health Program
Clinical Instructor in Psychology
Dept. of Psychiatry
Harvard Medical School
McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent Inpatient Mental Health Program
Located at
The Franciscan Hospital for Children
30 Warren St.
Brighton, MA 02135
2013-2014 Psychology Training Programs
McLean Hospital and The Franciscan Hospital for Children have joined professional forces to
provide mental health treatment for children and adolescents. With this union of historically strong
teaching institutions, it seems natural that a commitment to training evolves as a priority. The
McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent Inpatient Mental Health Program offers psychology
training practica to graduate students seeking a scientist-practitioner model of psychology training,
and operates alongside the Mass General Child Psychiatry fellowship training program and McLean
social work training program.
The psychology training program is on a 32-bed child and adolescent inpatient psychiatric program
located at the Franciscan Hospital for Children. The McLean-Franciscan program is widely
recognized within the state as a provider of very high quality inpatient psychiatric care for both
children and adolescents, providing inpatient psychiatric treatment for some of the most complex
cases in severe psychiatric crisis. The program also serves as a graduate psychology training site.
The inpatient program provides prompt response to psychiatric emergencies with comprehensive
assessment and treatment for children and adolescents. The breadth of the treatment population on
the inpatient child and adolescent psychiatric program and the corresponding ability to individualize
high quality psychiatric crisis care are defining characteristics of the program, treating youth ages
three through nineteen, of all developmental abilities, and all diagnostic categories. Further, the
inpatient program is the only inpatient child psychiatric program in the state with a sub-specialty in
treatment of youth with comorbid developmental disorders who are in psychiatric crisis.
Multidisciplinary assessment and crisis intervention on the inpatient child and adolescent psychiatric
unit consists of expert diagnostic assessment, psychopharmacological treatment, and mobilization of
the child’s family and support system. Program goals include the restoration of safety and successful
continuation of treatment and recovery outside of the hospital setting. These goals must be met
rapidly, within the typical parameters of managed care.
Standardized assessments of behavior, diagnosis, cognitive, and psychosocial functioning contribute
to assessment and treatment planning on an individualized basis. The focus of treatment involves
restoration of safety, targeting high risk behaviors, and most frequently, reduction of suicidal
behaviors. Treatment occurs within the context of a structured therapeutic program, based on a
strength-based model of care. Such a strength-based model of care is informed by emerging research
on the effectiveness of the promotion of resilience in children and by research on the creation of
trauma sensitive and person-centered treatment environments. The goal of the strength-based
treatment program is to promote safety and a sense of hope and mastery, while encouraging active
child and family involvement in treatment within the inpatient unit and in treatment that follows
hospital discharge. The therapeutic program introduces the youth involved to a range of techniques
designed to assist in stabilizing children in crisis, reduction of high risk symptoms, and beginning of
skill acquisition related to emotional regulation and distress tolerance.
Nationwide, the prevention of restraint and seclusion has become an important measure of the
quality of inpatient programs. The McLean-Franciscan program has been a leader in the
development and application of a strength-based model, with remarkable success in the reduction
and prevention of restraint and seclusion.
The inpatient therapeutic program provides an introduction to cognitive-behavioral and
psychoeducational techniques which show some evidence base for reduction of suicidal behaviors;
increasing emotional regulation and distress tolerance; decreasing depressive, anxiety and thought
disorder symptoms; and increasing outpatient treatment and medication compliance. Other evidence
based therapeutic techniques employed include elements of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT),
guided relaxation, and psychoeducation regarding mental health and psychiatric medication. Though
the provision of care is the primary focus of the unit, there are several clinical research projects
underway, including clinical outcomes research, perceptions of safety, and efficacy of inpatient DBT
& guided journal modules.
Practicum Position Descriptions
Inpatient Child and Adolescent Psychology Advanced Practicum Student
Advanced Psychology Practicum Students are assigned duties commensurate with academic and professional
experiences. The student will participate in the unit’s training model for group therapists, attend daily
rounds, design group curricula, observe & provide psychological and behavioral consultations, attend
community meetings and co-facilitate psychotherapy groups. The design and implementation of group
therapy is the major focus of the training program, with students typically planning & co-leading about 6
therapy groups per week of different modalities, with different age ranges. Students also have an opportunity
to develop individual therapy skills in the context of a short-term, focused treatment, typically with a
caseload of 2 youth who they will meet with at least twice weekly, as well as ongoing consultation with the
team of clinicians involved in the case. The position is designed for a minimum of twenty (20) hours per
week for the full academic year, and requires a clinical, counseling, or related behavioral sciences
background. The student will receive individual supervision from a licensed psychologist on a weekly basis
and will attend a weekly Psychology Seminar. Additional supervision by another licensed staff member is
provided, as is one group per week that is co-led with a supervisor in the group. Two hours per week involve
participation in multidisciplinary treatment team. The weekly seminar covers a range of topics related to
professional skills as well as working with youth in crisis, including group therapy, the child mental health
care system, resilience, trauma, basic psychopharm., understanding high risk behaviors, & DBT & CBT
techniques for youth in crisis. Students with prior psychological assessment experience may have some
opportunity to develop some their psychological assessment skills, including both personality and cognitive
assessment. Students with limited assessment experience will have some opportunity to do brief behavioral
and personality assessments and reports.
McLean-Franciscan Child and Adolescent Mental Health Programs
2013-2014 Advanced Practicum Application Form
__________________ Email:__________________________
Academic Institution: __________________________________________________
Indicate academic degree program you are enrolled in at the time you would begin a practicum at FCH:
Graduate Program
Fall, 2012 will be your ______ (e.g. 1st, 4th, etc.) year in the above program
Designate the term(s) and beginning/completion dates you are available for an internship.
Academic year (Fall/Winter/Spring)
Est. Beginning Date: ____September, 2013________________
Est. Completion Date: ____________________
McLean-Franciscan Advanced Practica Application Checklist
_____Letter of Interest
_____Current C.V. or Resume
_____Completed Application
_____At Least Two Letters of Recommendation
_____Submit Application Materials in a packet to:
Ralph Buonopane, Ph.D., Program Director
c/o Pat Speros
McLean-Franciscan Programs
Franciscan Hospital for Children
30 Warren Street
Brighton, Massachusetts 02135
Or email in a packet to:
Ralph Buonopane, Ph.D., Program Director
c/o Pat Speros at [email protected]
Application deadline is open and positions are filled as qualified applicants are identified. Please
contact Dr. Buonopane’s assistant, Pat Speros, if you have any questions regarding the practicum
positions. She can be reached at [email protected]