UTR Training Program
Under the Rainbow (UTR) is an outpatient therapy program for children, adolescents and their families. Direct services are provided by psychologists, social workers, child development specialists, psychiatrists, and psychology externs. UTR evaluates and treats most psychological disorders of children and adolescents and provides outpatient mental health services for children between the ages of 0 and 18. UTR has historically specialized in the treatment of the emotional effects of abuse and neglect. Services are also provided for the adult caretakers of these children who are dealing with issues related to those of the child. Services are provided in both English and Spanish to children and families who are on Medicaid.
UTR offers a range of services to children and their families, including: evaluation of the need for psychological services; individual therapy; play therapy; family therapy; group therapy; psychiatric evaluation; psychotropic medication management and consultation; ADHD assessment and treatment; case management; ongoing child advocacy; liaison with private and public child welfare agencies; and crisis intervention. Since UTR is located within a community hospital, the clinic is able to provide both medical and community-based work. Within the community, UTR provides consultations and interventions within the public school system. Within the hospital setting, UTR provides consultations to a variety of clinics and programs, including the pediatric medical inpatient unit, pediatric weight management clinic, and the pediatric endocrinology clinic.
Mount Sinai Hospital Medical Center is a large treatment, training and research center located on the near west side of the City of Chicago, just southwest of Chicago's loop area. In accordance with the hospital's mission to develop future generations of health care professionals, we provide clinical therapy externships in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health for clinical psychologists-in-training. A total of eight positions are typically available each year.
These externships begin in July and end one year later. Clinical psychology externs spend approximately 20 hours per week addressing their clinical responsibilities. Time off is provided during this period and it is expected that externs will arrange this time off with their supervisors, taking into account patient and service needs. Training evaluations will be coordinated with the extern's graduate program.
The therapy practicum emphasizes the psychotherapeutic treatment of children, adolescents and their families. Careful intake screenings, psychodiagnostic interviewing and treatment planning are expected. Treatment plans typically include, but are not limited to, individual and systemic interventions including play therapy, verbal therapy, family therapy, group therapy, and parental guidance modalities. Supervision is provided for each therapy case. Externs will be expected to coordinate treatment planning with other health care professionals, schools and community programs. Sensitivity to culture, gender and social class issues is highly valued and is viewed as fundamental to establishing the therapeutic alliance. Externs are expected to attend team meetings, weekly supervision (both individual and group supervision), didactic seminars and case conferences. Externs are also required to videotape their sessions and then review a specific number of tapes both with their individual and case conference supervisors.
The training program has developed into a competitive site, receiving approximately one hundred applications yearly for eight positions. Externs have come from a variety of different schools and disciplines (Psy.D. and Ph.D.), including:
Illinois School of Professional Psychology (Chicago and Northwest campus)
Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Loyola University (Clinical and Counseling programs)
Adler School of Professional Psychology
Illinois Institute of Technology
University of Illinois at Chicago
A total of seven rotations are available. Each rotation is designated as either 5- or 10- months. Each extern is expected to participate in a rotation or multiple rotations throughout the entire training year. Placement of externs into rotations is ultimately decided by the director of training, but relies on information about extern's goals and preferences. The rotations are as follows:
- Pediatric Endocrinology Clinic
- Pediatric Medical Inpatient Unit
- Elementary School Program
- Family Therapy
- Art Therapy Group
- Individual supervision (1 hr weekly)
- Case Conference (1 hr weekly)
- Group Supervision (1.5 hrs weekly)
- On-Site Rotation Supervision (1-4 hrs weekly)
- mid July through mid June each year
- 20 hours per week (average)
- Fridays are the only mandatory days; externs choose 2 other days
- 8 individual or family therapy hours per week
- 1 group therapy hour per week
- Year-long (about 1-4 hours per week)
- 1 hour per week – More as needed
- 1 hour per week
Group Supervision of Group Therapy
- 1.5 hours per week
- 1.5 hours per week
- 1/2 hour every week
*Externs will present/facilitate one didactic seminar during the training year.
Externs will be assigned to doctoral level staff clinicians for supervision. Additional supervision will be provided when the staff and extern determine it is advisable. One supervisor will serve as the extern’s primary supervisor. S/he will be responsible both for integrating the extern into their respective training program and for coordinating his/her experience at Mount Sinai with their respective graduate program. Supervisors will be responsible for assessing the extern’s learning needs and will facilitate learning experiences appropriate to those needs in the areas of clinical theory, clinical practice, ethics, and professional development. The primary supervisor will also provide mentoring for the extern in establishing a schedule that allows for participation in required clinical and training activities. Further, supervisors will monitor the timeliness of completion of charting, assessments, treatment plans, and treatment summaries. In addition to individual supervision, externs receive supervision of the groups they co-lead. This supervision is in a group setting and is facilitated by two staff members and our postdoctoral fellow.
Clinical supervision can be an illuminating, yet at times, anxiety-provoking experience. One aspect of the learning experience is the processing and understanding of the trainee's interactions with patients and staff. In a training setting such as ours, which often focuses on exploring issues of trauma and abuse, powerful feelings may be evoked in all members of the clinical team. Your supervisors are here to facilitate your understanding of patients, theory, and in addition, your reactions to your training experiences.
The extern's performance with respect to clinical functioning, clinical skill, professionalism and openness to learning will be evaluated primarily by their individual supervisor with collaboration and integration from the entire training team. Careful attention to the strengths and weaknesses of each trainee is an integral part of focusing training experiences that are attuned to individual needs. Supervision is viewed as involving an ongoing feedback and learning process. Formal written or oral evaluations will be conducted two times during the training year. Graduate program evaluations will be completed as per the requirements of the trainee's particular program. Any questions or concerns about the evaluation procedure should be directed to the supervisor. Every effort will be made for these evaluations to be fair, substantive and in the interest of the trainee's continued personal and professional development.
Externs will also have an opportunity to evaluate the training program and the degree to which it meets the externs' needs during the year. We do encourage externs to provide us with ongoing informal feedback as well.
LONG TERM THERAPY/EXTENSIVE WORK WITH CHILDHOOD TRAUMA
Externs provide long-term outpatient therapy with children, adolescents and their families who present with a wide range of problems and diagnoses, including significant histories of abuse/neglect/trauma.
WHAT MAKES THE UTR TRAINING PROGRAM UNIQUE?
UTR’s dedication and commitment toward training psychology externs is exceptional. The training program is designed to provide externs with a wide range of experiences to enhance their clinical and professional skills. UTR training program utilizes an ‘open door’ policy in which externs are provided the support and guidance they need while given the opportunity and independence needed to find their clinical voice and identity. Externs benefit from a collaborative, supportive, and team-approach within a community mental health center.
In addition to the psychology externship, UTR also offers a post-doctoral fellowship. If interested in applying, contact Dr. Richard Macur-Brousil at RichardMacur.Brousil@sinai.org or Dr. Mirna Ballestas at Mirna.Ballestas@sinai.org.
Our training program abides by the Practicum Application and Notification Guidelines put forth by some Chicagoland schools.
In order to apply for a psychotherapy practicum, the following information is needed:
- Cover Letter
- Curriculum Vitae
- 2 Letters of Recommendation
- Writing Sample
- Official Transcripts
Completed materials are to be mailed to:
Bob Hirsch, Psy.D.
Director of Clinical Training
California Ave and 15th Street
Nurses Residence, 5th Floor
Chicago, IL 60608
All applications should be received within 5 business days of the day that ACEPT permits students to send their materials. Applications received after this date may not be considered. Applications must include all materials (limit to 2 letters of recommendation, Cover Letter, CV, Writing Sample, Official Transcripts). Applications that are missing materials or do not include Official Transcripts may not be considered.