Practicum Training Opportunities

The Student Counseling Center (SCC) at Pacific University provides practicum training to clinical psychology doctoral students*.

Training Philosophy

The SCC subscribes to a practitioner-scholar model of training with a focus on developing skills associated with working as a psychologist in a university counseling center. Learning objectives are met through practical application, supervision, and professional development seminars. Learning objectives include but are not limited to:

  • Developing self-reflection & self-awareness skills including understanding self as a tool in therapy, exploration of cultural awareness, and theoretical development.
  • Developing intercultural awareness and effective intervention skills with diverse populations including self-exploration, practice with diverse clientele, and multicultural small group supervision.
  • Developing case management skills including triaging client concerns, determining appropriate disposition and treatment plan, and facilitating referrals.
  • Developing crisis intervention skills including risk assessment and safety planning, providing crisis coverage, and managing ongoing clients with elevated risk.
  • Developing collaboration skills including engaging in case consultation, participation in campus initiatives, and developing outreach to underserved students.

Clinical Training

Client Consultation, Short-term Therapy, and Referral Services

  • 8-11 scheduled individual clients per week for short-term therapy.
  • Two 30-minute scheduled initial consultations per week that includes triaging client concerns and determining appropriate treatment disposition (e.g., short-term therapy, group therapy, referrals).
  • One-hour of crisis/walk-in consultation coverage per week.
  • Case management and referral services for clients whose concerns fall outside of our Scope of Practice.

Group Therapy

Group therapy options vary depending on staff availability, clinic demands, and client interest. Possible group offerings include

  • Interpersonal Process Groups
  • Psychoeducational Skills-Based Groups
  • Support Groups

Outreach and Consultation

  • Practicum trainees engage in a minimum of one outreach activity each term and are encouraged to engage in more as activities become available that meet trainee interests and style.
  • Our center is committed to community engagement to raise awareness of mental health concerns and participating in prevention efforts. Examples include but are not limited to writing articles for our student newspaper (Pacific Index), psychoeducational presentations to various student groups, creating fliers or other written materials for students, and tabling to engage students in increased awareness of our services and mental health topics.

Breakdown of Hours

  • Statistics from years 2016-2019 indicate that during a 9 month 20 hour practicum placement, students average 204 direct client hours (range = 143-240).
  • Trainees spend approximately 60% of their hours per week in direct service, 15% in training and supervision, and 25% completing paperwork and case management.

Supervision and Training Support

  • 2-day orientation to our center and staff (~16 hrs/yr)
  • One-hour a week of individual supervision with primary supervisor (~31 hrs/yr)
    • Review of video and audio tape included in supervision
  • One-hour a week of administrative staff meetings and clinical consultation with the entire SCC staff (~31 hrs/yr)
  • Multicultural small group supervision on a bi-weekly basis (~15 hrs/yr)
  • Professional development seminars on a bi-weekly basis on a range of topics pertinent to college mental health (~15 hrs/yr)
  • Trainees engage in a case presentation once per semester
  • SCC senior staff encourage consultation and operate with an open-door policy to support trainees in skills-acquisition

Logistical Considerations

  • Our training site is open to those in their second practicum or Clinical Field Work and to those who have not been in ongoing therapy* at the SCC.
  • Training occurs at the Forest Grove location only.
  • Clinic operating hours are Monday – Friday 9:00am – 5:00pm. Outreach programming is occasionally scheduled outside of normal business hours.
  • This is a nine month position (typically third week of August – third week of May).
  • There are several clinic closures during the academic year including Thanksgiving break (beginning Wednesday at noon), Winter Break (typically mid-December through the first Monday in January), and Spring break (typically the last week of March). Please check the Arts & Sciences Calendar for exact dates and note that these dates may not align with SGP breaks.

About us

The Student Counseling Center (SCC) at Pacific University was established in 1985 with the mission of offering psychological services to help students address concerns that interfere with their successes at Pacific University. The SCC is organizationally a part of the Division of Student Life, headed by the VP of Enrollment Management/Student Affairs and the Associate VP of Enrollment Management/Student Affairs, Dean of Students. The SCC strives to support students in reaching their academic potential by focusing on intellectual, emotional, social, and cultural development.

* Students from Pacific University's School of Graduate Psychology receive psychotherapy and crisis services from SCC senior staff only, and practicum students do not have access to any scheduling or clinical information regarding their peers. More detailed information regarding the impact on training options for SGP students who access the Student Counseling Center for clinical services is available in the Information for Pacific University Graduate Psychology Students Accessing the Student Counseling Center.