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Counseling & Psychological Services
Montana State University
P.O. Box 173180
Bozeman, MT 59717-3180

Tel: (406) 994-4531
Fax: (406) 994-2485
Location: 211 Swingle
> Counseling & Psychological Services
Counseling Services

Montana State University

Counseling and Psychological Services

**APA Approved Doctoral Internship**

August 16, 2013 - August 15, 2014.

Site Match Code 140511

Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS) is a department within the Division of Student Success at Montana State University-Bozeman (MSU). As staff members at CPS, we attempt to foster our and others' awareness of and appreciation for human diversity. We strive to create an environment of mutual respect and understanding among people of diverse racial/ethnic, religious/spiritual, and national backgrounds, sexual orientations, gender, gender identity, mental and physical abilities, languages, ages, socioeconomic statuses, as well as those with other diverse backgrounds and cultures. The clinical orientation of the Center emphasizes personal development and prevention as well as psychological treatment, and the professional staff offers a variety of services and programs to the university community. Among these services are individual and couples therapy, group counseling, crisis intervention, and psychological assessment. Skill-building workshops are presented to augment the personal growth and development of students and staff. Approximately half of the Center’s time is devoted to providing counseling, and the balance to supervision, consultation, structured workshops, and staff development. CPS is accredited by the International Association of Counseling Services (IACS), and the doctoral internship training program is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA). 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. Only those applicants who participate in the Match can be matched to this site. To complete the AAPI online, please go to the applicant portal at


The internship program operates in accordance with a Practitioner Model of training informed by theory, science, and research.

Philosophy of Training. A primary goal of the internship is to assist in preparing interns to function competently and independently as psychologists. The program is designed to provide a bridge between the role of graduate student and entry-level professional. The internship year involves multiple opportunities for interns to increase their knowledge and awareness of human diversity. It is a time to refine basic clinical skills and move toward establishing an integrated professional identity. Interns are included in, and given experience with, every aspect of a university counseling center, as well as providing services at a psychiatric hospital or a mental health clinic on an Indian reservation. They are afforded continuous and intensive supervision by several supervisors during their internship year. In addition, interns are encouraged to be actively involved in designing their own internship program.

Core Training Experiences:

  1. Counseling. Interns provide theory-based individual, couples and group counseling for approximately 15 hours per week. Interns receive two hours each of weekly individual supervision and group supervision by licensed CPS staff psychologists. Digital recordings of sessions, case write-ups and co-therapy formats are used in supervision. Supervision sessions address all of the activities in which interns engage during the internship.
    • Individual Psychotherapy. Interns will gain most of their therapy experience providing individual psychotherapy. Clients present with a diverse range of problems and differing degrees of complexity. Interns provide both short and long term therapy.
    • Couples Therapy. Due to the large number of partnered students at MSU-Bozeman, interns will likely have the opportunity to provide couples therapy. While interns' initial experiences with couples therapy will most likely be as co-therapists with a senior staff person, as skills develop, interns may assume the role of primary therapist.
    • Group Psychotherapy. Group psychotherapy is an important service offered by CPS, and interns are expected to be actively involved in the group program. Interns offer a minimum of one long-term group during the academic year. Often, interns' special interests will determine which groups they lead.
  2. Assessment. Interns perform intake evaluations and conduct psychological assessments during internship.
    • Intake Evaluations. Interns perform 3-4 intake evaluations each week. These evaluations are fundamental to understanding the client's needs, including urgency and disposition, as well as the assignment to a permanent therapist. Conceptualization, tentative diagnosis, and initial therapy recommendations are also important components of the intake process.
    • Psychological Assessment. Interns conduct one comprehensive assessment battery each semester. This includes a clinical interview; cognitive, objective and projective personality testing; integration and interpretation of data; report writing and providing feedback to clients. Assessment is utilized to assist in differential diagnosis, therapy planning and intervention. Interns also participate in a weekly assessment seminar.
  3. Outreach and Consultation. Interns offer workshops, consultation and counseling services to organizations on campus including: Residence Life, Career Services, the Center for Native American Studies, Staff/Faculty Wellness Programs, Disability, Re-entry & Veterans Services and university academic departments. Interns deliver a minimum of four outreach activities to the campus community during the year. Examples of outreach include, but are not limited to: structured workshops, class lectures, consultation with residential living staff and other departments on campus, and written articles for newsletters or the student newspaper.
  4. Assessment, Research, and Scholarship. Four hours per week are allotted for assessment, dissertation completion or involvement in other scholarly activities. While involved in the assessment process, interns use these hours for administration, scoring, interpretation, report writing or provision of feedback to clients. When not involved in the assessment process, interns use these four hours to further progress on dissertations or to pursue other scholarly work such as publishing articles from dissertations or working on a program evaluation project. Research activities are supported by a biweekly research/professional development seminar. The seminar also addresses such professional issues as the job application process.
  5. Diversity. Although located in a geographical area limited in terms of cultural and individual differences, CPS is committed to helping interns increase their sensitivity and competence in working with persons of diverse racial/ethnic, religious/spiritual, and national backgrounds, sexual orientations, mental and physical abilities, languages, ages, socioeconomic statuses, as well as those with other diverse backgrounds. Interns are given priority when assigning ethnic, cultural, sexual and other minority clients. The internship offers a specific focus on Montana's American Indian population, including an opportunity to offer counseling to American Indian students and a unique 13 week clinical rotation on the Crow Indian Reservation.
  6. Mental Illness. Interns may choose to do a 13 week summer rotation working with individuals suffering from serious and persistent mental illness during an inpatient rotation at Montana State Hospital. Diagnosis, case management, DBT informed treatment, psychological assessment and crisis intervention are all aspects of this training.
  7. University Residential Living. Interns provide clinical services three hours per week in the evening, and occasional workshops for individuals and families living in university housing.
  8. Ethics/Professional Issues. Interns are exposed to a wide range of ethical and professional issues during their service to clients at CPS and the summer rotations. These issues are addressed during weekly supervision sessions and staff meetings. Training seminars also focus on specific ethical/professional dilemmas that psychologists often face, including dual relationships, Tarasoff-type situations and confidentiality issues on a university campus and in a rural setting.
  9. Professional Development. Training offered on selected internship experiences while at CPS maximizes interns' progress toward professional goals. Support in seeking and obtaining post-internship employment is also offered. Interns are encouraged to take advantage of workshops and conferences sponsored by APA and other professional organizations. Release time is granted and limited financial support is provided, when funds are available, to attend conferences or continuing educational experiences.
  10. Personal Growth. CPS values and encourages participation in personal growth activities for both staff and interns. Although not required, interns are encouraged to engage in their own personal therapy during their internship year and release time is provided to support this personal growth opportunity. Past interns have indicated that the cohesive, and at times, mentoring relationships, which have developed among the interns and with the CPS staff, have been a valued resource for continued growth as well.

Training Modalities: Supervision and Seminars

Supervision is viewed as a pivotal learning component to our training program. Our internship utilizes a Practitioner Model which relies on experiential learning through intensely supervised activities. Interns can expect a minimum of four hours per week of supervision for their individual/couples case load: two with their primary individual supervisor, and two in group supervision with the other interns and the Director of Training. In addition, interns have a rotating supervision hour with the Director or Director of Training every two out of three weeks.

Supervision for group therapy is provided separately by the senior staff co-facilitator of the group. Similarly, outreach and consultation activities are supervised by the Outreach Coordinator.

Peer supervision occurs at weekly case staff meetings where particularly difficult or educational clinical cases are presented and discussed by all staff members.

Interns are expected to attend and participate in a variety of seminars over the course of the year. Seminars provide instruction/education on a range of issues pertinent to the developing roles and identities of emerging psychologists. A weekly two hour Training Seminar covers numerous special topics pertinent to mental health professionals. Based upon interest, interns have the option of presenting one or more of these seminars.

Additional instruction and supervision is afforded by the coordinator for each seminar/learning experience conducted during the internship. These include Diversity Seminar, Assessment Seminar, Supervision of Supervision Seminar, Couples Therapy Seminar, Research and Professional Development Seminar, and an optional DBT/Coping Skills Consultation Team Seminar.

Interns' typical weekly schedule

Clinical Experiences




Individual, couples







Supervision: individual/group


Seminars: Assessment, Diversity, Couples, Native American, Research, Supervision of Supervision (spring semester), Training


Case conference




Supervision of practicum students (Spring semester)



Client/group preparation; paperwork



During the summer months each intern will choose an external clinical rotation, either at Montana State Hospital or an outpatient clinic at the Crow Public Health Service Hospital. These choices offer opportunities for a focused experience working with a specific population. Accommodation and meals are provided by each rotation site.

  • Montana State Hospital. Interns can spend their 13-week summer rotation at Montana State Hospital where they can gain experience with patients who have acute and chronic serious mental illness. Interns who select this rotation will be given experience with individual and group therapy, multidisciplinary treatment team meetings, psychological assessment, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and crisis management.
  • Crow Indian Reservation. Interns have the opportunity of a 13-week clinical rotation on the Crow Indian Reservation working in an outpatient clinic. The rotation involves typical staff responsibilities of individual counseling, consultation, chemical dependency therapy, crisis intervention, psychological assessment and program development.


Supervision Assignments

Interns have a minimum of three different primary clinical supervisors over the course of the year. Supervisors are assigned first semester according to intern identified strengths, growth edges, and goals for the semester. Interns provide input regarding supervisor preference spring semester. Summer rotation supervision is provided by licensed psychologists at external rotation sites (assignments made on the basis of availability). Interns returning to CPS on a part time basis during the summer will receive additional individual and group supervision at CPS.

Intern Evaluation

Interns receive formal and informal feedback throughout the year. Formal written evaluations occur at the end of each semester for each supervisory relationship and seminar. The Comprehensive Intern Evaluation serves as the overarching tool that evaluates interns' progress on internship competencies and goals. Feedback from the entire training staff is reflected on this evaluation.

Intern Evaluation of the Training Staff and Internship Program

Interns complete written evaluations of their supervisors and seminar leaders at the end of each semester. An overall evaluation of the internship occurs at the end of the internship year. Feedback from interns is held in high regard and discussed by the training staff each year. In addition, interns are encouraged to provide ongoing feedback regarding their training experiences throughout the year.


Betsy Asserson , Ph.D., Assistant Director of Training, Psychologist
Counseling Psychology, University of Pittsburgh, 2002
Interests: women's issues, sexual assault, eating disorders, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, supervision and training, groups, outreach and consultation.

Laura Bailey , M.S., Staff Therapist, LCPC
Health and Human Development, Montana State University, 2004
Interests: women’s issues; interpersonal/relationship concerns; GLBTQ

Cheryl Blank , Ph.D., Director of Training/Assistant Director, Psychologist
Clinical Psychology, Washington State University, 1988.
Interests: contemporary psychodynamic psychotherapy; women's issues; health psychology; interpersonal issues; dream work; biofeedback; trauma; supervision and training.

John Christopher , Ph.D., Psychologist
Counseling Psychology, University of Texas, 1992.
Interests: cultural psychology; mindfulness; mind/body medicine; interpersonal and psychodynamic psychotherapy; psychological well-being; philosophical psychology; hermeneutics; personality development.

Patrick Donahoe , Ed.D., Director, LCPC
Counseling Psychology, University of Idaho, 1977.
Interests: psychotherapy with survivors of childhood trauma; eating disorders; sex therapy; critical incident trauma debriefing; sport psychology; couples; groups; supervision.

Mariah Hill, Psy.D., Psychologist
Clinical Psychology, Pacific University, 2006.
Interests: Multicultural/diversity issues; interpersonal process and “use of self” models; trauma

Brian Kassar , Psy.D., Psychologist
Clinical Psychology, Illinois School of Professional Psychology, 2000.
Interests: object relations/interpersonal psychotherapy; outreach and consultation; men's development; impact of media/technology on individual and society; supervision; groups; career development; identity issues; peer education.

Ryan P. Niehus , Psy.D., Psychologist
Clinical Psychology, Pacific University, 2008.
Interests: Psychodynamic and gestalt therapies; college student development; men's psychology; sport psychology; trauma; supervision; outreach and consultation; relationship counseling; group therapy.

Rick Winking , M.Ed., Substance Abuse Counselor, LCPC
Mental Health Counseling, Montana State University-Bozeman, 1994.
Interests: existentialism; addictions; family systems; sex offender treatment; creativity; group and couples' therapy.


Maggie Kirlin (Pacific University)

Liz Russell (University of Akron - Akron Campus)

Lisa Wolf (Union Institute and University - Brattleboro, VT)


Date of Employment

The CPS Doctoral Internship is a 12 month, fixed term, full-time paid position. The internship begins August 16 and ends August 15 of each year and is a 2,000 hour internship.

Stipend and Benefits

The base stipend for the 12-month internship is $20,141. Interns can elect to live in Family & Graduate Housing (FGH) which is cost effective in the Bozeman community. Those who choose to live in the Bozeman community (as opposed to FGH) receive an additional $1,800 housing supplement. Comprehensive benefits include comprehensive health insurance (medical, dental, vision), annual leave (15 days), sick leave (12 days), 12 University holidays and retirement. Interns are given up to 5 days of Professional development leave to attend conferences, defend dissertations and interview for jobs. Access to Wellness programs, the library and sports facilities are additional benefits available to interns. Interns have their own office equipped with a telephone, digital recorder, and computer with internet access. Adequate and ongoing administrative support is provided by front office staff throughout the internship.


Bozeman Montana , a town of about 40,000 full-time residents, located in the Gallatin Valley of Southwestern Montana, is ideal for those with interests in outdoor recreation. The city is surrounded by mountains with the nearest ski hill being only 15 miles from town; Yellowstone National Park is 90 miles away; the numerous nearby mountain ranges offer countless hiking, backpacking, and camping opportunities; and there is outstanding trout fishing and rafting/kayaking within minutes of town. In addition to outdoor activities, Bozeman has a very active visual and performing arts community. There are many vibrant cultural opportunities available, including the Equinox Theater Company, Ellen Theater, Montana Theater Works, Bozeman Symphony, Intermountain Opera Company, the Sweet Pea Arts Festival, the Hatch Film Festival, national tours of Broadway shows, and a thriving music, art and theatre community.  The MSU Departments of Media/Theatre/Arts and Music have strong programs that offer theatre productions, film screenings, art shows, and musical performances on campus.

Montana State University is a land-grant university founded in 1893. Enrollment is about 14,180 (70 per cent Montana residents). An unusually large proportion of the student body is comprised of students over traditional college age and partnered students. Academically, MSU-Bozeman has large engineering and business programs, and offers over 120 undergraduate majors. In addition, the university has a strong inter-collegiate athletics program.


Applicants must be enrolled in a doctoral program in clinical or counseling psychology. Interns from APA accredited programs are prioritized, although this is not a requirement. Applicants must complete a minimum of 300 Intervention and Assessment hours (as defined on the AAPI) by the time of application. Completion of all coursework toward the doctoral degree is required prior to the beginning of internship. Applicants must complete their comprehensive examinations prior to the ranking deadline.


CPS uses the Application for Psychology Internship (AAPI) On Line. Hard copy or mailed applications will not be accepted. Please refer to the APPIC website ( to learn more about the AAPI On Line.

Completed applications must include the following:

  1. Completed AAPIC Application for Psychology Internship (AAPI Online form).
  2. In your cover letter please address why you are interested in our particular internship training program, your internship goals and how CPS may help you meet those goals.
  3. Current Vita.
  4. Graduate Transcripts. (need not be official)
  5. Three letters of recommendation from professionals, at least two of which are from professionals familiar with your clinical skills, via the Online AAPI.


  1. AAPI application materials must be uploaded and available for our review no later than 8:00 a.m. December 3, 2012.
  2. We conduct telephone interviews only, though informal visits are accommodated. All candidates with completed applications will be informed by email about their interview status by January 7, 2013.
  3. Only completed applications will be reviewed beginning December 3rd. Top ranked applicants will be contacted to set up a 50 - 60 minute standardized telephone interview. Interviews take place between early and mid-January. Following telephone interviews, telephone reference checks may be done, applicants are ranked by the entire Intern Search Committee and names are submitted to the National Matching Service. On Match Day, the Director of Training contacts matched applicants initially by phone followed by a letter confirming the match results to matched candidates and their academic training directors, according to the APPIC Match Policies.
  4. ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENT: In accordance with MSU policy, hiring will be conditional upon successful completion of a pre-employment background check.
  5. We participate in the APPIC Internship Matching Program. Applicants must register with National Matching Services Inc ( to be eligible to match to our internship. 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.

Please direct questions or clarification regarding the CPS doctoral internship to:

Cheryl Blank, Ph.D., Director of Training/Assistant Director



Modern electronic communications are efficient and convenient, but our training program misses the individual interaction, essential in the days before the Internet and online applications. Despite our on-line brochure and e-mail links, we still welcome the opportunity for personal contact with applicants, and those considering applying. We encourage you to call (or e-mail, of course) about any aspect of our program, about MSU, or the community. We look forward to hearing from you!

A copy of the current APPIC Internship Offers and Acceptances policy is available on the APPIC Home Page.

[Electronic mail is not a secure method of conveying confidential information. CPS requests that e-mail not be used for clinical or other sensitive correspondence].

Accreditation Status of the Internship Program

The CPS Doctoral Internship Training Program in Psychology is accredited by the American Psychological Association Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation. This office may be contacted at 750 First Street NE, Washington DC 20002-4242, (202) 336-5979.

MSU Non-discrimination Policy

Montana State University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, sexual orientation or preference, marital or parental status, age, religion, creed or political belief, mental or physical handicap or disability, or status as a covered veteran in admission, access to, or conduct of our educational programs and activities or in our employment policies and practices.

Montana State University is committed to providing an academic and work environment free of discrimination.  Harassment based on race, color, ethnicity, national origin, marital or parental status, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation or preference, age, disability, or veteran status is a form of discrimination and is prohibited.

The University is committed to taking positive and effective actions in the recruitment, hiring, training, and promotion of persons in all classes of employment to help overcome the present effects of past discrimination and increase opportunities for qualified women and minorities, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  In addition, Montana State University assumes particular responsibility for providing opportunities for education and training for the state's Native American peoples in the various disciplines and professions that are characteristic of this land-grant university.

Montana State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and encourages applications from female, minority, and disabled persons. 147750056Z

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