Practicum Sites

Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Department of School, Family and Mental Health Professions

Practicum Sites

Clinical Mental Health Counseling students complete a minimum of 725 hours of supervised clinical experience as part of their program. The following practicum sites host Clinical Mental Health Counseling students for supervised experiences.

Please note that this list is subject to change.

Urban Corps of San Diego

Site Description: The Urban Corps of San Diego County is a local nonprofit conservation corps and charter school. Their mission is to provide young adults with a high school education combined with job training and community service in the fields of conservation and recycling, which will assist youth in becoming more employable while protecting San Diego’s natural resources and instilling the importance of community service. The organization was started by the San Diego City Council in 1989 to solve the problem of youth dropping out of high school along with the need to preserve local resources. For the past two decades, the Urban Corps has served as a bridge to a better life for thousands of young people ages 18-25. The mechanism for change in the lives of these youth is green job training and a second chance at an education. When Corps members are not at work gaining hands-on experience on resource conservation projects such as recycling, tree planting and green building projects, they are working towards attaining a high school diploma at the onsite Urban Corps Charter School. The charter school offers a high standard of education while the Corps-to-Career department works jointly with the school to offer developmental case management, a career development curriculum, and one-on-one assistance with resumes, interviewing, job searches, and post-secondary educational goals.

Training and Supervision: Urban Corps provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC and a semester long training experience for practicum I students promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees work in a variety of different capacities including conducting individual and group counseling related to the behavioral, social, and emotional success of their clients. Trainees also facilitate the success of Urban Corps clientele via its several community and academic-based programs including Environmental Services, Greenbuild, Graffiti Removal, Corps-to-Career, and many more. Counselor trainees complete their practicum experience under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of videotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee personal growth.

Springall Academy

Site Description: Springall Academy provides an intensive, structured, individualized special education program aimed at strengthening each student's academic and organizational skills, social and emotional abilities, sense of responsibility and self-esteem. Springall serves students with special needs including those diagnosed with SLD, OHI, ED and AUT, ranging in ages from age 5-21, and in grades K-12+ with a goal of getting their students to the point where they may successfully re-enter the ‘mainstream’ schools and community. All students are encouraged, nurtured, respected and supported in achieving their full potential in an enriching, positive environment.

Training and Supervision: Springall Academy provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC and a semester long for practicum I students, promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees work in a variety of different capacities including providing individual and group counseling for students aimed at optimizing their mental health, case management and clinical assessments, as well as helping students with their “School-to-Life Skills” which include facilitating students with increasing social skills, vocational awareness, self-confidence and job training. Practicum is provided under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of videotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee personal growth.

Alvarado Parkway Institute

Site Description: Alvarado Parkway Institute Behavioral Health System is a private behavioral health system offering inpatient and outpatient psychiatric services. We are dedicated to the wellness of individuals, their families, and our community through prevention, intervention and treatment in a safe and culturally sensitive environment. Our culture of caring is designed to provide patients and their families with quality-driven psychiatric care and outstanding customer service. We understand the challenges, the stigma and the treatment of mental illness, and we consider it an honor and a privilege to serve those who entrust us with their care.

Training and Supervision: Alvarado Parkway Institute provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees conduct individual and group therapy sessions with an inpatient adult population under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of audiotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee professional growth. Each trainee is assigned a postdoctoral mentor who assists with training, co-facilitation of groups and documentation training. Individual supervision consists of one hour face-to-face sessions with the trainee’s clinical supervisor. Group supervision consists of three hours of supervision in a group format with the clinical supervisor.

North County Lifeline

Site Description: North County Lifeline is a social service/counseling agency comprised of case managers, counselors, therapists, mentors, social service workers, assessment specialists, program developers, mediators, educators, youth leaders, volunteers, interns and administrators devoted to helping youth and their families connected to resources within their community. North County Lifeline’s vision is dedicated in building self-reliance among youth, individuals and families through problem solving, skill-building and accessible community- based services.

Training and Supervision: North County Lifeline provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees work in a variety of capacities including providing individual and group counseling for youth and their families, primarily focused on an “at risk”, juvenile diversion population. Counseling trainees provide direct services under the supervision of a licensed clinical supervisor. Supervision includes review of videotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee personal growth.

Veteran’s Village of San Diego

Site Description: VVSD's Veterans Rehabilitation Center (VRC) is a state licensed residential early treatment program for homeless veterans who have substance abuse issues. The VRC offers homeless veterans a safe, clean and sober village-like setting for several months to a year, depending upon individual needs. Formulated as a social model, VRC is integrated with structured case management and mental health therapy that simultaneously addresses addiction, issues of mental health as well as medical health, legal issues, familial struggles et cetera.

Training and Supervision: Veteran’s Village of San Diego’s Veteran’s Rehabilitation Center provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees work in a variety of different capacities by providing clients with comprehensive clinical assessments, crisis counseling, EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing) and art therapy, substance abuse and case management, inpatient psychiatric referrals, medication management and educational counseling under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of videotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee personal growth.

Paradise Valley Hospital Bayview Behavioral Unit

Description: Bayview Behavioral Unit is a sub-set of Paradise Valley Hospital dedicated to serving clients on a mental health basis. The Bayview Behavioral Health Campus offers a continuum of care, which includes inpatient hospitalization, partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient services and clubhouse programs. Patients entering Bayview programs receive a full psychiatric evaluation, a chemical dependency assessment (as needed) and a complete medical and physical examination. The main goal is to help men and woman from young adulthood through their senior years to learn the most effective ways to confront the problems they face in their daily lives.

Training and Supervision: Bayview Behavioral Unit provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees work in a variety of different capacities including conducting both group and individual counseling for clients who suffer from chemical dependency and/or substance abuse, have experienced trauma or stress in their lives, or are unable to function optimally in their homes and communities due to behavioral/social/emotional management, rehabilitive therapy, educational groups for clients and families, case management, etc. Counselor trainees complete their practicum experience under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of videotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee personal growth.

Community Research Foundation - New Vistas

Site Description: New Vistas Crisis Center (NVCC), affiliated with Community Research Foundation (CRF), is a START (Short-Term, Acute, Residential Treatment) program for adults having a psychiatric crisis. Clients meet the admission criteria of hospitalization at a voluntary level of care. The majority of clients are dually-diagnosed with a secondary substance use disorder. Many of the clients are also homeless. Our target population is the severely and persistently mentally disordered.

The purpose of our program is to provide the least intensive level of care utilizing a psychosocial rehabilitation approach to treatment. Clients receive psychological and psychiatric treatment while learning social and daily living skills with the intention of stabilizing the presenting crisis and hoping to reduce the likelihood of subsequent crisis. Treatment core competencies utilized at START programs include Motivational Interviewing; Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT); Comprehensive, Continuous, Integrated System of Care (CCISC) model for individuals with co- occurring psychiatric and substance disorders; Cultural Competency; and Psychosocial Rehabilitation. Each resident is connected to a variety of social service supports within the community, to aid the transition into successful living beyond the START programs.

Training and Supervision: New Vistas is dedicated to providing outstanding clinical training to multiple disciplines (clinical psychology, nursing, marriage and family therapy, social work and psychiatry) along with outcomes based treatment for a challenging population. New Vistas provides an 800-hr structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC promoting further growth and development in the counseling field.  The focus of training is on individual and group counseling; intake assessment; diagnostics; treatment planning; consultation; documentation; case presentation; and crisis intervention. Counselor trainees complete their practicum experience under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of recorded and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee personal growth.

Southern California American Indian Resource Center (SCAIR)

Site Description: SCAIR is a nonprofit organization founded in 1997 to provide educational and community services to San Diego’s Native American community including both the Native urban and reservation communities of San Diego County. Participants include individuals and families from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds, and various levels of mental and physical ability. The types of services offered through SCAIR include Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) training programs through the Southern California Tribal Chairmen’s Association.

Training and Supervision: SCAIR provides a yearlong structured training experience for advanced students in CMHC promoting further growth and development in the counseling field. Counselor trainees conduct individual and group counseling sessions with teens, individual adults and couples, as well as provide career counseling, under a licensed supervisor. Supervision includes review of videotaped and in-vivo (live) counseling sessions in individual and group formats for all trainees along with constructive feedback for trainee professional growth. SCAIR has provided employment opportunities for trainees during and/or after the completion of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program.

San Diego County Office of Education Juvenile Court and Community Schools

Clinical Supervisor: Wendell J. Callahan, Ph.D.
California Licensed Educational Psychologist

Description: Juvenile Court and Community Schools (JCCS) provide a fully-accredited educational program and mental health support for school-age youth who are either wards of the court or have been referred by social services, probation or one of the 42 school districts in San Diego County. Services are provided to incarcerated youth, pregnant minors, foster youth, expelled teens, chronically truant youth, students in drug treatment centers and group homes for neglected or abused children, and homeless youth. JCCS serves about 12,000 students per year with 52 schools that are split between two networks that cover the entire county. JCCS educators are committed to high expectations, social justice and equality for all students. They value diversity and strive to eradicate institutionalized racism and discrimination in all forms. Their priority is to raise achievement of all students while eliminating the achievement gap between students of color and white students. They accomplish this through the delivery of culturally and linguistically responsive standards-driven instruction, courageous and advocacy-oriented leadership and relevant professional development. All JCCS community members stand personally committed and professionally accountable for the achievement of this mission.

Training and Description: Practicum students will work with in both the court and community school settings. Experiences may include individual, groups as well as whole class presentations or lessons. Individual supervision will be conducted weekly. There may also be opportunities for group supervision, depending on the number of practicum students. Additionally, the practicum students are invited to participate in monthly counselor and school psychologist meetings and professional development.