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UCC internship receives APA accreditation

By Robert Miller

Spectrum Volume 20 Issue 15 - December 11, 1997

Virginia Tech's University Counseling Center (UCC) has received accreditation from the American Psychological Association (APA) for an internship program in professional psychology. The program becomes one of only 76 APA-accredited university counseling center programs in the United States.
Interns are recruited nationally from doctoral programs in counseling and clinical psychology. Interns work full-time for one year at the UCC. The internship is a requirement for completion of the doctoral degree in professional psychology as well as a requirement for eventual licensure as a psychologist. The UCC program includes intensive supervision (five hours per week), weekly seminars and case conferences (five hours per week), and frequent opportunities for mentoring from senior practitioners.
The addition of the internship program extends UCC services to the university community by enlarging the clinical staff and increasing Virginia Tech's capacity to deliver outreach programs. Because interns are recruited nationally, Tech benefits from their experiences in other universities and settings, and their contributions of original ideas for service delivery to the campus community.
The internship selection process in professional psychology is extremely competitive. APA accreditation ensures that the UCC internship program will be a desirable placement for psychology interns.
The UCC internship program received APA accreditation within two years--an unusually brief period of time. Most programs do not receive accreditation as quickly.
This achievement is the culmination of the efforts and support of the University Counseling Center and Student Health Services staff; Brian Warren, director of the University Counseling Center and Student Health Services; Lanny Cross, vice president for Student Affairs; and Peggy Meszaros, senior vice president and provost.
Susan Zlotlow, director of the Program Consultation and Accreditation office at the APA, stated in her letter confirming the UCC internship's accreditation: "The program's policies, plans, and operations are consistent with the Committee on Accreditation's `Guidelines and Principles' and the program's stated mission and goals. Espousing the practitioner-scholar model of psychology, the program has successfully developed clear education and training objectives. The curriculum reflects conscientious efforts to include issues of diversity. Also commendable is the program's commitment to public disclosure by developing comprehensive and accurate materials."
Miller is the training director for the UCC internship program. He coordinated the training program and led the accreditation self-study and site-visit process. A licensed clinical psychologist; he joined the UCC staff in 1988.