Child Guidance Clinic and Doctoral Psychology Internship
The Child Guidance Clinic (CGC) Doctoral Internship Program
For more details, click here for the Intern Handbook.
Program Aim and Overview
The CGC internship program aims to produce well-rounded psychologists that are ready for entry-level practice who have specialized training in forensic psychology practice but can excel across a broad spectrum of professional psychology settings. While our program offers a wide range of training experiences to develop professional competencies, psychological assessment is emphasized. The overarching training goal of our program is for interns to acquire clinical assessment and intervention skills that are generalizable to multiple professional settings, as well as the specialized evaluation, intervention, and psycho-legal skills requisite for forensic practice.
CGC interns’ primary training setting is within DC Superior Court’s juvenile pre-trial and post-disposition probation services and supervision division, the Court Social Services Division (CSSD). CGC interns provide services in the H. Carl Moultrie courthouse and CSSD satellite offices referred to as Balanced and Restorative Justice (BARJ) Drop-in Centers, strategically located throughout Washington, DC. Interns also provide services at other locations, such as DC’s pre-trial adolescent detention facility, Youth Services Center (YSC).
The doctoral psychology internship program at the CGC provides training in nine profession-wide competencies. By the completion of internship, interns are expected to have achieved competence in each of the nine areas below. Further details regarding the Competencies and their associated Behavioral You can find these elements in the Intern Handbook.
2. Ethical and Legal Standards
3. Individual and Cultural Diversity
4. Professional Values, Attitudes, and Behaviors
5. Communication and Interpersonal Skills
9. Consultation and Interprofessional/Interdisciplinary Skills
APPIC Membership and APA Accreditation Status
The internship program at CGC is an APPIC-member program (number 1747), and abides by the policies set forth by APPIC. 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. The CGC Doctoral Internship Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association. Questions related to the program’s accreditation status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979
E-mail: apaaccred [at] apa.org
CGC interns’ primary client population are adolescents under court supervision (on probation) due to their involvement with the juvenile justice system in Washington, DC. All clients are either court-ordered or court-referred to CGC for clinical and forensic psychological services. The majority of youth served by CGC identify as African American or Hispanic/Latino. The youth served by CGC are typically between the ages of 12 and 18. Approximately 75% of the youth served by CGC are male and 25% are female. Youth and families served by CGC may also identify in other diverse ways, including varying sexual orientation, gender identity, language, nationality, ability, religion, family composition, income level, and more. Many have personal histories of trauma and come from economically disadvantaged and under-resourced communities with frequent exposure to community violence and crime. Interns have exceptional and unique opportunities to provide culturally informed assessments and services to youth presenting with an array of cognitive and psychosocial problems.
Interns’ primary activity is conducting psychological evaluations at the pre- or post-adjudication or disposition phase of the youth’s court proceedings. Evaluations fall into two categories: clinical (psychological, psychoeducational, adaptive functioning, neuropsychological) and forensic (competency for trial, violence risk, psychosexual/sex offense risk). Interns also provide clinical treatment (individual and group therapy services) and forensic interventions, such as competency attainment and sex offense treatment, for youth. Interns provide secondary clinical supervision for CGC practicum students (externs) and participate regularly in interdisciplinary consultation with attorneys and probation officers.
Interns participate in two rotations: Howard University Counseling Services (HUCS) and the US Probation Office (USPO) Reentry Court Program (REEC). Via HUCS, interns receive training and experience in group psychotherapy. Via REEC, interns provide intake assessments and cognitive-behavioral individual therapy to returning citizens (adults on supervised release from federal prison). Interns participate in at least four hours of structured learning each week on related topics such as assessment, therapy, and forensic psychology. Interns receive at least four hours of supervision per week, two of which is with a primary supervisor. Supervisors utilize an integrative approach that emphasizes developmental and cultural components and considers interns’ skills, interests, and growth edges.
ADA and Access
All CGC and intern facilities are ADA-compliant. For additional information on ADA access and other supports, please review: https://www.dccourts.gov/services/language-access-services for Language Access Services and the Office of Court Interpreting Services (OCIS); and https://www.dccourts.gov/contact-us for information on Access, Wheelchair Accessibility, Website Accessibility, DC Relay Service and Assistive Listening Devices, Architectural Features, Mobility Devices, Service Animals, and contact information for DC Courts’ ADA Coordinator.
Requirements for Successful Completion of Internship
Interns must complete 2000 hours of training during the internship year and must meet the minimum levels of achievement as indicated on the biannual evaluations.
Application and Interview Process
Applicants submit an APPIC Application for Psychology Internships (AAPI) and a de-identified integrated assessment report and a treatment summary write-up by the Application Deadline (the second Friday in November) via the APPIC website using APPIC code 1747. Applications are carefully reviewed by CGC training staff. Applicants are notified by email on or before December 15 whether they have been selected for interview. Interviews take place in January.
Applications are accepted using the AAPI online process, including the following components:
1. Cover letter, which should describe your interest and readiness for our internship program 2. A current Curriculum Vitae
3. A graduate program transcript
4. A de-identified integrated assessment report (e.g., an integrated report for an evaluation that included administration of multiple psychological assessment measures and clinical interviewing; a juvenile and/or forensic report is preferable but not required)
5. A written, de-identified treatment summary (e.g., discharge summary, treatment plan)
The interview process is conducted over Zoom and consists of two parts:
Part 1: A virtual Welcome Session. This includes a meet-and-greet with CGC staff, a Q&A with current interns, an overview of training experiences, and virtual viewing of CGC facilities. Applicants attend this session prior to their interview.
Part 2: A 1-hour individual interview with CGC psychology training staff.
CGC welcomes internship applicants from all backgrounds, and does not discriminate in selection, training, retention, or evaluation on the basis of any individual characteristics which are not relevant to success as a psychology intern such as age, ethnicity, race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, religious or philosophical affiliation, class, disability, nationality, citizenship, language, etc. CGC avoids actions, policies, or procedures that may restrict access to our program for reasons irrelevant to success in training.
Diversity in our faculty and trainees at all levels is an integral part of our program. Thus, we prioritize recruitment of diverse interns from a range of cultural and personal backgrounds, as well as applicants with experience or a strong interest in working with clients from diverse individual, cultural, and community backgrounds. We take a holistic view of applications that appreciate all aspects of a candidate’s background – not just publications and clinical experiences, but also volunteer work, advocacy, lived experiences; looking at CV and personal essays for demonstration of a commitment to diversity in academic or work activities.
There are a few firm prerequisites for applying to our internship program:
1. Applicants must be enrolled in a doctoral clinical, counseling, or school psychology graduate program at an APA-accredited institution.
2. Applicants must have all formal coursework and comprehensive exams completed prior to beginning internship.
3. Applicants must confirm formal approval of their dissertation proposal by the ranking deadline.
4. Applicants must have completed two years of practicum training.
5. Applicants must have accumulated 100 or more assessment hours.
6. Applicants must have completed four or more integrative assessments.
APPIC defines an integrated assessment as including 1. a history, 2. an interview, and 3. at least two tests from one or more of the following categories: a. personality assessments (objective, self-report, and/or projective), b. intellectual assessment, c. cognitive assessment, d. and/or neuropsychological assessment. These are synthesized into a comprehensive report providing an overall picture of the patient/client.
7. Applicants must be a U.S. Citizen, an individual lawfully admitted for permanent residency, or authorized by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service to work in the U.S.
All DC Court employees, including interns, must also pass a Court-required criminal background check. Interns complete fingerprinting, a Criminal History Request form which authorizes review of adult arrest records and forfeitures for the past ten years, and a Child Protection Register (CPR) check form from the intern's state of residence to establish if the intern has a record of substantiated abuse or neglect of a child. Failure to pass these checks will result in the intern not being permitted to proceed at CGC.
|Katara Watkins-Laws, PhD
Chief Psychologist/Supervisory Psychologist
|Jennifer Christman, PsyD, ABPP
Training Director/Supervisory Psychologist
|Malachi Richardson, PhD
|Jamee Carroll, PhD
Probation Officer/PRTF Coordinator