Concentrations

Candidates will be able to select from one of the following concentration areas after they have accepted the position. All concentration areas will be available to choose from for the upcoming fellowship/residency year. Each concentration area will include both direct clinical experience and didactic training.

Complex Trauma Assessment and Intervention  

Concentration Supervisor: Dukhae Sung, PhD, LP

This concentration area aims to examine, process, and integrate contemporary trauma research, models, and evidence-based approaches to trauma assessment and interventions. You will learn how trauma is defined socially, culturally, and clinically, as well as how to assess and identify trauma narratives in your clients. The concentration will cover the neurobiology of traumatic stress (e.g., ANS, Polyvagal Theory) and psychological and physiological repercussions of complex PTSD (e.g., adverse childhood experiences study and developmental trauma; attachment dysregulation; dissociation). In this way, you will learn to process trauma within the “Window of Tolerance,” to minimize the likelihood of re-traumatization and facilitate affect regulation and self-containment among clients. You will learn to assess complex PTSD symptoms within other diagnoses, including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, personality disorders, and dissociative disorders and utilize assessment tools to better inform treatment planning. You will develop a framework for integrative treatment for complex PTSD, drawn from EMDR Therapy, Parts Work Therapy, Internal Family Systems Therapy, Somatic Psychology, and mind-body therapies that will help clients feel resourced while engaging in effective trauma processing. In the context of neuroplasticity and posttraumatic growth, you will employ empowerment and resilience to foster relational regulation and integration of a coherent sense of self in your clients. Lastly but most importantly, you will be encouraged to connect to self-regulation practices to improve the therapeutic alliance and prevent burnout. 

 

Collegiate Mental Health Administration 

The Collegiate Mental Health Administration Concentration area is aimed at providing an introduction and exposure to the operational, political, and administrative components that support and advance the work of our collegiate mental health centers. This concentration, we feel, is both unique and needed in our field as limited opportunities have historically existed for training and exposure prior to on-the-job experience when expectations for performance have been set. Selected experiences include mentorship by administrative leaders within the center through ongoing supervision, conversation, and support; exposure to administrative meetings, projects, initiatives, cross-departmental interactions, and work processes; participating in a selected project or initiative where a selected body of work will be requested to be performed.

By engaging in this concentration, we expect that you will have a better understanding of how and why decisions are made and the variables and stakeholder needs that are weighed; an overview of the various administrative opportunities and roles within various collegiate mental health centers including, but beyond those available at MSU CAPS; the national and regional organizations and networks established to support collegiate mental health administration; and mentorship about how to pursue a career in collegiate mental health administration if desired.  

 

Group Counseling

Concentration Supervisor: Markie Silverman, PhD

The Group Counseling Concentration aims to provide specialized training in group counseling through didactic training, experiential training and supervision/consultation. This concentration is designed to provide foundational knowledge regarding group therapy process and theory and teach trainees how to implement this knowledge into practical use. More specifically, this training will focus on group counseling skills with college counseling and psychiatry services and college counseling centers.  

By engaging in this concentration, we hope that you will: 

  • Effectively engage in the process of group referral and formation (e.g., discussing groups with clients, conducting group screenings, facilitating the first group meeting and making referrals to other clinicians) 
  • Demonstrate efficient group formulation/conceptualization skills (e.g., including factors such as intrapsychic, interpersonal, and group-as-whole perspectives) 
  • Demonstrate understanding and implementation of group interventions in a developmentally, group-appropriate manner.  

This concentration will further allow for you to: 

  • Differentiate the usefulness of group interventions depending on the type of group, group size, population of the group, or group stage 
  • Develop an understanding of the role of the group leader and how this role impacts group process (e.g. activity level, silences, transferential/counter-transferential experiences) 
  • Learn to manage group dynamics in the context of systemic issues (e.g. time-limited semesters, safety/risk management, impact of student behavior on other students, co-leader interactions, consultation with individual therapist/psychiatry, cultural/diversity components, telehealth needs) 
  • Appropriately make multicultural adjustments and considerations to group intervention practices 
  • Adequately address multicultural concerns/macroaggressions as they occur in group. Throughout this concentration, you will have the opportunity to engage in trainings, supervision and group clinical hours that can count toward your certification as a Certified Group Psychotherapist (CGP). 

 

Intensive Clinical Services (ICS) 

     Concentration Supervisor: Karen Stanley-Kime, Ph.D., LP, ABPP


Intensive Clinical Services (ICS) provides evidence-based clinical services to college students presenting with chronic and/or high acuity mental health concerns (e.g., chronic suicidality with past attempt(s), first-episode psychosis, persistent engagement in functionally-impairing nonsuicidal self-injurious behaviors[NSSI]). The ICS is tasked with three primary functions: short-term outpatient treatment programming, crisis intervention, and critical incident response on MSU's campus. Individuals who select this concentration area can expect to receive advanced and immersive clinical training in the ICS outpatient treatment program as well as crisis intervention, specifically in the following clinical activities:

  1. Assessing and addressing the immediate safety needs of clients who present with elevated risk due to suicidality, homicidality, and/or danger of self-neglect due to psychological issues
  2. Engagement in voluntary and involuntary inpatient psychiatric and post-psychiatric hospitalization services, as necessary
  3. Provision of Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)-informed individual and group therapy, along with other treatment modalities as clinically indicated and feasible
  4. Effective functioning as a member of an integrated treatment team
  5. Cultivation of supervision and staff/junior-level trainee training skills.

These services are provided through multiculturally sensitive and responsive, trauma-informed, recovery-based lenses that place the client at the center of their own mental health recovery. 

 

LGBTQ Empowerment, Identity Development and Affirming Care

     Concentration Supervisor: Ginny Blakely, LMSW

This concentration will include clinical focus, competency and humility training in a university setting, working with sexually and gender-diverse clients, including but not limited to identities such as questioning, lesbian, gay, bisexual and queer, as well as gender-diverse identities, including but not limited to gender-questioning, gender-exploring, transgender, nonbinary and genderqueer. Other areas of focus with these populations could include relationship styles, attractionality, intersectional identities and minority stress. Through individual and group therapy, supervision, liaison, and outreach opportunities, clinicians will learn queer, trans, feminist and multicultural approaches to foster and support identity development from LGBTQ-identified and experienced supervisors.

Clinical experiences can be tailored to the clinician’s areas of interest and could include the following:

  1. Specialized case load to serve LGBTQ clients from an intersectional, social justice lens toward queer and trans BIPOC students
  2. Co-facilitation LGBTQ support groups (through existing groups or creating a new one)
  3. Supervision and mentorship from an LGBTQ-identified clinician
  4. Exposure to various theories and models of identity development, including principles of structural systems of oppression and intersectionality
  5. Learning to assess and further develop an awareness of one’s own biases, prejudices, and assumptions and how to navigate and manage them
  6. Integrated work with MSU’s Student Health Services Trans Health team
  7. Liaison work with campus partners, including LGBTQ registered student organizations and MSU’s Gender and Sexuality Campus Center
  8. Opportunity to present case presentation(s) and/or clinical forums relevant to working LGBTQ clients
  9. Outreach opportunities (CAPS Connect, collaborations, presentations, etc.)
  10. Risk management skills and LGBTQ resources
  11. Critical resource and community connection through case management skills
  12. Professional use of self and self-disclosure
  13. WPATH gender-affirming care letters/referrals experience and training
  14. Quest Training: Building Capacity for LGBTQA+ Inclusion

 

Multicultural Engagement and Outreach

    Concentration supervisor: Talitha Easterly, PhD

We maintain a philosophy that is ‘multiculturally focused’ and as a result, our outreach efforts are necessarily, inherently and intentionally culturally sensitive and racially responsive. Outreach is our means of engaging in the lives of those connected to our MSU Community and beyond; it is our goal to reach out to those that might not otherwise be comfortable accessing more traditional services through CAPS. Outreach involves awareness, education, stigma reduction, prevention, and collaboration by providing informational services, workshops, campus-wide programming, consultation and student support among other ways of engaging our community. This concentration area will provide a very experiential, hands-on opportunity to be involved in Outreach and Multicultural Initiatives in connection to MSU CAPS. Engagement in this selected concentration will involve participation on our Outreach Committee and related functions of program development, implementation and evaluation; mentorship, leadership and administrative exposure in this area; community and student engagement; and some needed flexibility and fun.

 

Psychodynamic Psychotherapy

    Concentration Supervisor: Josh Turchan, PhD

This concentration area will focus on experiential and didactic training in multiculturally centered brief and short-term psychodynamic psychotherapy with college-aged adults. We will integrate and conceptualize both cultural and developmental influences on the origin and maintenance of psychological problems. This concentration will focus on developing a contemporary and pluralistic approach to psychodynamic psychotherapy with an emphasis on relational/interpersonal psychodynamic theory and treatment, while also exploring and getting exposure to a variety of psychodynamic theories and evidence-based psychodynamic treatments. This concentration will focus on the primacy of the therapy relationship as a mechanism of change and will encourage the formal and informal assessment of psychotherapy processes. Residents who select this concentration will gain experience in using therapeutic assessment to inform and shape treatment, helping them and the patient collaboratively gain a better understanding of their presenting concerns. As part of this concentration, the candidate will also have the opportunity to co-lead an Interpersonal Process group to further enhance here-and-now relational/interpersonal interventions. The goal of this concentration is to provide the resident an opportunity to further develop their identity and skills in culturally-centered psychodynamic practice working in a collegiate mental health system.