Tag Archives: doctorate

What does the site you're applying to say about its LGBTQ training opportunities and affirmative environment? (Source: Kurious on Pixabay. Some rights reserved.)

Internship and Postdoc Sites Share LGBTQ Climate and Training Data

What does the site you're applying to say about its LGBTQ training opportunities and affirmative environment? (Source: Kurious on Pixabay. Some rights reserved.)

What does the site you’re applying to say about its LGBTQ training opportunities and affirmative environment? (Source: Kurious on Pixabay. Some rights reserved.)

Are you applying for internship?

Are you interested in finding out more about LGBTQ climate and training opportunities at internship and postdoctoral sites?

If so, check out our new resource created by the APAGS Committee on Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity and Division 44’s Student Representatives! (Special thanks go to Julia Benjamin, Skyler Jackson, Elizabeth Ollen, and Eric Samuels for their leadership on this project, and to willing training directors for their time and insight.)

We conducted a survey on APPIC-registered internship and postdoctoral sites this summer with the intent of collecting information about how friendly these sites were for people of diverse sexual orientations and genders, and about LGBTQ-focused internship training opportunities that the site might offer.

We received responses from 120 internship sites, 22 postdoctoral sites, and 45 combined internship and postdoctoral sites, from a total of 36 states as well as Washington DC, and three Canadian provinces.

Feel free to explore and manipulate the Excel file here! (last updated 10-1-2015) 

  1. You’ll be prompted to download an Excel file after clicking the link above.
  2. Please note that the file has two sheets; the first is introductory and the second is raw survey data.
  3. Note: If you can’t open .xlsx files, you can first download the file and then use a free online site (like this one) to convert the file to other formats, such as .csv or .pdf.

Data points are organized into broad categories including information on general site information, health insurance, staff diversity trainings, expression of identity, LGBTQ training focus, LGBTQ climate for clients, and overall area and site LGBTQ-friendliness. Additionally, for ease of reading, colors have been used to signify specific answer types.

In finding a site that is right for you, we encourage you to consider all sites in their totality, across domains presented here and in combination with other factors available in the APPIC directory and materials made available by each site. Further, we ask that you refrain from making conclusions about sites that did not or could not complete our survey by its deadline.

APAGS CSOGD and Division 44 plan to periodically update this database to provide the most up-to-date information for internship applicants. We hope you find it to be a helpful resource!

Editor’s note: Other APAGS tools that might help intern and postdoc applicants include webisodes on the APPIC application process, a climate guide (PDF) in workbook format for evaluating sites independently on LGBTQ criteria, a new resource guide for LGBTQ students, and  much more.


Taking Care of Yourself in Graduate School

MPj04330550000[1]Congratulations – you are accepted into graduate school! Whew! It is such hard work to get into a graduate program that it is sometimes hard to remember to take care of yourself once you get there. There are so many things to be involved in, so many things you have to do and learn. And you want to give your absolute best to everything you do.

It is easy to become so engaged in all of this that you forget to take the time to nurture your whole self –the physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual. It is important to find a way to balance all these aspects of your life and maintain that balance throughout your graduate school years. You will spend many hours, reading, going to class, doing research, and seeing clients; however, to be truly successful you also have to make sure to keep your life in balance. This may actually be one of the hardest things you have to learn and, as someone who learned much of this the hard way, I offer a few suggestions that were helpful to me. I hope they can be useful to you.

First, keep in mind why it is you are in graduate school. What drew you to psychology? What does it mean to you to become a psychologist? What do you really see yourself doing in the future?

It is important to be really specific about answering these questions because you will need the motivation that comes from that specific vision often during your graduate school career.

  • If your answer is something non-specific like, “I want to help people”, it may help you to work on a more specific answer. Which people? Adults? Children? People with specific characteristics, issues, experiences? Try to really picture what you will be doing as a psychologist, who you will be working with, and the setting you will work in. When things get tough and you wonder if you made the right choice in pursuing a Ph.D., when you wonder if you should commit five years of your life, when you wonder if it should be these five years, when you wonder if you can really do this – what will sustain you is remembering the reasons you thought becoming a psychologist was important. It is not a bad idea to write these reasons down, represent them with a picture, videotape yourself talking about them, or engage in any other things that will help you remember exactly why becoming a psychologist was important to you.

Second, make sure that you are always doing something that you really love.

If what you love is clinical work, make sure you have something you are doing in that area in the midst of a semester heavy on research or theory. Even if your courses are arranged in such a way that you have a semester lacking in clinical focus, you can watch videos of psychotherapy, shadow a colleague’s case, or read just ten pages a day on clinical techniques. If research is your passion and you feel that all your time is being taken by practica and clinical work, make sure you give yourself the time to read the latest study in your favorite journal, attend a colloquia, or just talk to a colleague about their research. The point is that going a whole semester with no attention to the things that really make you happy can make you forget why you are doing this. Sometimes you get so buried that you cannot even remember the things that make you happy. That is the time to get out your writing, your picture, your videotape or whatever you did to document why this was all important for you to do at this time in your life.

  • You will always be busy, and if you are doing what you love, that busy-ness should bring you joy. If it is all just about what has to be done, if there is no joy, you need to find a way to reconnect. You might feel that you are so busy that you cannot fit another single thing in your day or your week. But if you think about the time that it takes when you do not want to get out of bed, when you watch a TV show you do not even really care about just so you can avoid doing what you are “supposed” to be doing, or the “just one more” video game you engage in before you get to work on your thesis – you will probably be able to find the time. If you are not sure what it is that you really love, think back to why you started this. In that, you will likely find the seed of what you love to do.

Finally, one of the most important things I have learned is how important it is to have something in my life that allows me to feel a sense of accomplishment.

When I was in graduate school, I was starting a placement at an emergency youth shelter for children and adolescents who had been removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect. My supervisor invited us over to his house for a BBQ. When we were all there, he said he wanted to show us something important and took us to his garage. Inside, was an amazing array of handmade furniture, in every phase of being cut out, built, finished, and polished. He told us that in our work, we very often do not get to see the outcomes. If people are doing well, they do not come in to see us. Often, working with children, they get sent off to placements, return home, or run away and we never know what happened to them. If we are going to survive in this profession, we have to give ourselves something that we can stand back and say, “I did that. It is finished.” For my supervisor, it was building his furniture. I have never forgotten this lesson and it has come back to me in many ways over the years since.

  • If you find yourself feeling strangely gratified by sweeping the floor — watching the pile of dirt come together, getting it all into the pan, and then throwing it away — you probably have a need for a sense of accomplishment in your life. Theses and dissertations, preliminary exams, and internship applications are wonderful sources of accomplishment but they are few and far between. We need something more concrete, frequent, and often visible. Our work does not often present us with a pile in an “In basket” that will all get transferred by the end of the day to an “Out basket”. We need to find something that can give us as much pleasure as taking an empty box, filling it with objects, taping it up, writing the contents on the side and piling it in an ever-growing stack. Even though it is annoying to realize that everything you need is in one of those boxes, it is an amazing sense of accomplishment to see the stack of boxes piling up. What can you give yourself that gives you that sense of accomplishment. And when you tell yourself you do not have the time for it, remember that you cannot afford not to. You have to nourish your spirit as much as your mind.

Remember that it is all about balance. Graduate school will build your mind and your skills. Don’t forget about your joy, your passion, your friends and loved ones, your spiritual life. These are the parts of your life that will get you through the long run of graduate study, will guide you in your work, and allow you to give the best of what you have to the work you choose to do.

Editor’s note: This post was written by Beth Boyd, PhD, Professor; University of South Dakota. It originally appeared on the Multicultural Mentoring blog by the Society of Clinical Psychology’s Section on the Clinical Psychology of Ethnic Minorities. (APA Division 12, Section 6). It is reposted here with generous permission. Over time, you will see all eight original posts on gradPSYCH Blog.


Gone Fishing: Making Sense of Your Options for Graduate Study

If you’re fishing for a graduate program in psychology, the sea is plentiful. But how do you know which one you want?

At times, it is not clear how programs differentiate themselves from each other. Many applicants are not provided the tools to evaluate programs based on data that is available. Applicants might not know what makes one program a great fit for their professional goals, and another a not-so-great one.

APAGS understands that the choice to go to graduate school in psychology is very significant. We’re trying to take the guesswork out of helping you find your own ideal, high quality training. We’ve blogged about it before and presented about it locally and at regional psychological conferences. (In 2015, we’ll be presenting at EPA in March and RMPA in April.) Now we’re upping our game and making it even easier for you to get on-demand access to our best resources and professional perspectives on the graduate school selection process!

Recorded in November 2014 with the support of Psi Chi and our colleagues in the Education Directorate, the following APA webinar workshop helps you navigate the process of applying to graduate school in psychology as an informed consumer. You will learn (1) the similarities and differences between various degrees and psychology subfields; (2) how to evaluate schools based on several objective and subjective criteria; and (3) how to potentially afford and repay the cost of your graduate education in psychology. Questions and answers follow the formal presentation.

You can also view just the slides (PDF, 2MB) of this workshop, or slides and workshop transcript together (PDF, 1MB). For more resources on applying to, affording, and eventually repaying your graduate education in psychology — including some of the worksheets referenced in the recording —  please visit our APAGS resource page.

Happy fishing!


APAGS on the Road! California: 9/20 and 9/21

APAGS is coming to California in one week to offer a half-day workshop for students and recent psychology graduates.

In sponsorship with the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards and The Trust,  we will present sessions to help students and recent grads grapple topics such as:

  • Building a private practice — identifying different types of private practice, discerning what types of practice you might envision for yourself and developing a plan to start that practice.
  • Loan forgiveness — brief overviews of the National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program, Federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program and NIH Loan Repayment Program.
  • Psychological services in the digital age — applying key ethical principles to evaluate risks, benefits and appropriateness of using electronic communication and social media in professional practice.
  • Preparing for the EPPP — best practices for studying for the licensure exam.

Advance registration is $15 before Sept. 15, 2014. On-site registration is available for $20. Follow these links to register:

See you in California!


Spreading Awareness and Taking Action on the Internship Crisis

IMG_6735This spring, a group of APAGS members recorded a short video about the real struggles that doctoral students are facing as a result of the imbalance between internship applicants and positions — and how these struggles inform the field we care so deeply about. We hope that you can use this video as a tool to spread awareness of the internship crisis and catalyze solutions to ending it. Please watch it here:

When you click the link at the end of the video — http://on.apa.org/internshipcrisis — you are brought to a page with a number of awareness, advocacy, and action steps. The video shows that we have a large stake in the issue. The list of steps reveals that we have the skills and ability to do something about it!

APAGS intends for this video to be a stepping stone on the way to solving the internship crisis. Please share it amongst your friends, colleagues, and faculty. What did you think? What action will you take? Leave your comments on our blog.

Editor’s note: Todd Avellar is a doctoral student studying Counseling Psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and was a Member at Large on the APAGS Committee through August 2014. Applications for APAGS subcommittee members are being accepted through 9/10/14.