Doctoral Internship in Health Service Psychology

Thank you for your interest in our APA-accredited internship program! We invite you to review the sections below to learn more about our training! Please contact Dr. Dhaliwal via email if you have any questions.

Three doctoral interns standing in an office wearing U-N-L-V masks. The intern on the right is holding a laptop with another intern shown on the screen.

CONTACT

Sonia Dhaliwal, Psy.D. LP
Assistant Director/Training Director
702-895-0562
sonia.dhaliwal@unlv.edu

UNLV Psychology Doctoral Internship

Current Interns

Ximena Radjenovic

Ximena was born and raised in Romania, a country with a culture rooted in strong familial and social connections. She obtained a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Bucharest and continued her education graduating with a master in psychology from the University of Phoenix. Ximena is currently a fourth-year doctoral student in Counseling Psychology Ph.D. program at Howard University. Her experience of living in a different culture than her own shaped her research, counseling, and clinical interests broadly in cultural influence on resilience following trauma. More specifically, she is interested in understanding cultural influence on trauma associated cognitive appraisals, coping process in diverse populations, and role of culture in responses to trauma. Her primary clinical areas of interests include: trauma-related issues, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression, and other comorbidities. Ximena enjoyed presenting at several national conferences on topics related to diversity issues, trauma, PTSD, and social justice. Outside of work, she enjoys traveling, reading, watching movies, and spending time with her family and friends.

Sean Traynor

Sean Traynor received his B.A. in psychology with a minor in applied psychology from UC Santa Barbara. He is currently attending a doctoral program in clinical psychology at Alliant International University, San Francisco. His clinical interests range from high-dysfunction populations to substance use to working with underserved communities. Sean's research interests include sexual wellness for victims of sexual assault. He also involves himself in a variety of hobbies including archery, lapidary, playing Magic: The Gathering, tabletop role-playing games, and glassblowing.

Chelsea Powell

Chelsea Powell is originally from Maryland, but has been living in Chicago for the past four years. Her primary interest is research on the pathogenesis and treatment of eating disorders. For her dissertation, she is assessing how aberrant development of sense of self may relate to eating disorder risk in men. Clinically, she enjoys both individual and group work with clients endorsing a broad range of presenting concerns, especially anxiety, mood, and eating disorders. Powell adopts an integrative approach to clinical work, influenced by cognitive behavioral, humanistic, and existential theory. She is especially drawn to DBT and ACT, but is interested in integrating more relational approaches as well. In her free time, she likes to read, act, go to plays, listen to live music, spend time outside, play sports, go to museums, and explore different parts of the city.

Chad Davis

Chad Davis, M.A. is a Ph.D. candidate in the Clinical Psychology program at Fordham University. As a clinician and researcher, he is interested in the psychological similarities between substance abuse and eating disordered behavior, particularly among men and ethnic minorities. He was awarded the Fordham Summer Research Fellowship for his pilot study examining food addiction in a predominantly African-American sample. Mr. Davis is passionate about disseminating information about mental health through the media. Chad Davis is also a classically trained singer and actor. In his spare time, he enjoys weightlifting, dancing and hiking.

Description of the Center

Student Counseling and Psychological Services offers training programs for doctoral interns and graduate students. Services include individual, couples, and group psychotherapy, crisis intervention, medication evaluation and management, psychological assessment, drug and alcohol use assessment, educational workshops and presentations, consultation, and referrals to community health care providers. These services are undertaken in accordance with the following philosophy:

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) adheres to the procedures established by the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC) for the recruitment and selection of doctoral interns. This internship site agrees to abide by the APPIC policy that no person at this training facility will solicit, accept, or use any ranking-related information from any intern applicant.

The CAPS internship has been accredited by the American Psychological Association since November 8, 2016. For questions related to the internship program's accreditation status, please contact the APA Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation:

Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation 
750 First St, NE 
Washington, DC 20002-4242

Telephone: (202) 336-5979

CAPS is a proud member of APPIC. CAPS Program Code Number for the Match: 2293

Counseling and Psychological Services Philosophy

Student Counseling and Psychological Services strives to enhance the psychological health and personal effectiveness of students, thus empowering them to maximize their personal adjustment and individual accomplishments. In providing services, the staff attends to remedial, developmental, and situational concerns, recognizing that the interaction between the stress associated with the academic environment and individual developmental periods may lead to problems that can be alleviated through therapeutic intervention. CAPS works in concert with the university community to create an environment that helps students to understand and respond to challenges and opportunities in a way that enhances their personal and academic development.

CAPS is a department of the Student Wellness cluster of the Division of Student Life at UNLV. Together with the Student Health Center, Jean Nidetch Women’s Center, Office of Student Conduct, UNLV Wellness Zone, and Disabilities Resource Center, the Student Wellness cluster works collaboratively to achieve the goals indicated by the following mission statement:

Student Wellness Mission Statement

The mission of Student Wellness is to advance the optimal wellness of UNLV students, thereby enhancing their lives and their academic success. To fulfill our mission, Student Wellness affirms the importance of working in partnership with the greater university community; respecting individual differences and cultural diversity; and providing quality services and programs that address the physical, emotional, social, environmental, intellectual, spiritual, and occupational dimensions of life.

CAPS Staff

The professional staff consists of nine psychologists, a psychiatrist, 2 licensed clinical social workers, licensed couple and family therapist, and a care manager. Additionally, there are a number of administrative staff and student workers who support the clinical staff and assist in CAPS operations. Each year, we typically have approximately two-five graduate-level practicum counselors and four doctoral interns.

Professional Staff Details

Britney Alford, Psy.D., LP

Staff Psychologist

Dr. Britney Alford received her masters and doctorate degrees in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Chicago, Illinois. Dr. Alford completed her APA-accredited pre-doctoral internship at the Ohio Psychology Internship Consortium in Ravenna, Ohio. Dr. Alford’s pre-doctoral and post-doctoral trainings were completed within an array of clinical settings (i.e.,...

Mike Browning, Psy.D., LP

Staff Psychologist

Mike completed his doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University. He completed his APA accredited internship at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Florida, and his postdoctoral residency at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington. Mike’s clinical areas of interests include chronic disorders, trauma,...

Liz Carrasco, LCSW

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Liz Carrasco is a licensed psychotherapist and is the trauma specialist at UNLV Student Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). Ms. Carrasco earned her Master of Social Work degree (MSW) and Bachelor of Arts degrees in Psychology and Criminal Justice at UNLV. Ms. Carrasco is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional (CCTP), and specializes in working with...

Tanya Crabb, Psy.D.

Staff Psychologist

Dr. Tanya Crabb is licensed clinical psychologist, first generation college student, Jamaican immigrant, comic book enthusiast, and prior service active duty Marine and Persian Gulf War veteran. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from the City College of New York. She received her masters and doctorate degrees in Clinical Psychology from the Hawaii School of Professional Psychology. Dr. Crabb’s...

Sonia Dhaliwal, Psy.D., LP

Training Director

Dr. Sonia Dhaliwal is a Licensed Psychologist and the Director of Training of the APA accredited internship (CAPS) at UNLV. She received her graduate training at the School of Professional Psychology, Pacific University, OR. She then completed her Clinical Internship at Michigan State University followed by her post-doctoral training at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Dr. Dhaliwal was...

Stephanie Hank, M.S., LMFT

Counselor

Stephanie Hank attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas receiving a B.A. in Psychology in 2012 and an M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2014. Her clinical interests include working with couples with a special interest in pre-marital therapy. She also enjoys working with young adults and has significant experience working with adolescents ages 13-18. In her free time, she enjoys...

Luke Jensen, Psy.D., LP

Associate Director of Clinical Services

Luke Jensen received his doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Midwestern University in Glendale, AZ. He completed his internship at the University of Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) - Counseling and Psychological Services in Indianapolis, IN. In addition, Dr. Jensen completed his postdoctoral residency at Northern Arizona University (NAU) - Counseling Services in...

Joseph A. Kithas, MD

Director of Behavioral Health Team

Joseph Kithas, MD, is the leader of our Behavioral Health Team. The Behavioral Health Team is a distinct team within Student Wellness and provides services to both CAPS and the Student Health Center. Services consist of psychiatry, behavioral health services within the Student health Center, and psychiatric nurse case management. Dr. Kithas holds board certifications through the American Board of...

Reagan Knoblauch, LCSW

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Reagan Knoblauch received her Masters of Social Work degree from UNLV in 2012. Reagan has worked with HIV and LGBTQ+ populations for seven years as a lead medical case manager and mental health therapist. In addition, Reagan completed an internship at Southern Nevada Adult Mental Health’s Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital in a clinical case management position. Reagan’s clinical interests include...

Shauna Landis, Psy.D., LP

Director

Dr. Landis received her doctorate degree in Clinical Psychology from Loyola College In Maryland. She completed her APA accredited internship at the Penn State University - Counseling...

Christina Patterson, Ph.D., LP

Staff Psychologist

Dr. Patterson is a licensed psychologist in the states of Nevada and New Mexico. Dr. Patterson received their doctorate from Utah State University in a combined Clinical/Counseling/School psychology program, their master of science from Eastern Washington University in a psychology program with a clinical emphasis, and their bachelor of art degree in psychology from University of Nevada Las Vegas...

Gerald Shorty, Ph.D

Staff Psychologist

Yá’át’ééh, Dr. Shorty is a Diné tribe member of the Navajo Nation from Shiprock, NM. Dr. Shorty received his doctorate degree in Counseling Psychology from Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ. He completed his post-doctoral fellowship at Stanford University Counseling and Psychological Services where he was in the Social Justice Track and a liaison to the Native American Cultural Center. Dr....

Sonaly Silva, Psy.D., LP

Staff Psychologist

Dr. Silva earned her Master’s and Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Los Angeles. She completed her APA Accredited pre-doctoral internship at Western Carolina University Counseling and Psychological Services, and Post Doctoral Fellowship at University of North Carolina Wilmington Counseling Center. Sonaly has a special interest in working with...

Kristin Zaccaro, Psy.D., LP

Staff Psychologist
Outreach Coordinator

Dr. Kristin Zaccaro earned her B.A with a double major in Psychology and Early Childhood Education at Eastern Connecticut State University and earned her Psy.D. at Pacific University in Hillsboro, Oregon. She was on the Organizational and Consulting track at Pacific University, which involved specialty coursework and training. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at University of Nevada Las...

Aims of the Training Program

CAPS is part of the Student Wellness cluster, which embraces balanced, holistic health and wellness. The doctoral internship is designed to train interns to be competent, entry-level generalist psychologists. The internship training program emphasizes professional identity development, ethical decision making, and multicultural competence. CAPS provides a setting in which interns increase and strengthen their abilities to practice psychology throughout their year. Training involves developing both core skills and positive professional identity essential for the work of an entry-level psychologist. Interns work with a multidisciplinary staff who offer diverse backgrounds and various theoretical orientations, including evidence-based treatment. Interns have a unique opportunity to work within a center that includes a Behavioral Health Team, which serves as a bridge between the Student Health Center and CAPS to offer collaborative and integrated care. Interns gain experience by participating in a wide range of supervised professional activities within a large, urban, diverse university counseling center, including:

  • Individual, couples, and group therapy from a brief treatment model.
  • Crisis assessment and intervention.
  • Assessment and diagnosis.
  • Individual and group supervision.
  • Seminars (Multicultural, Case Conference, Clinical and Professional Issues, Supervision of Supervision and Professional Development).
  • Provision of supervision.
  • Rotation Areas:
  • Case management and referrals to community mental health care.
  • Outreach, educational workshops and presentations, and consultation across the university.
  • Research, training, professional development, and other activities.
  • Attendance and participation in staff, Clinical Assessment Team (consultation), joint provider (Student Health Center), and cluster (Student Wellness unit) meetings

Doctoral psychology interns are expected to achieve the following aims during the training year:

To prepare entry level generalist psychologists for practice in health service psychology through:

  1. the development of competencies in clinical practice, outreach programming, consultation, and supervision
  2. the development of scientific and professional knowledge, identity, and ethical integrity
  3. cultivating a commitment to diversity and provision of culturally competent services

This is accomplished through training focused on nine profession-wide competencies:

  1. Research
  2. Ethical and Legal Standards
  3. Individual and Cultural Diversity
  4. Professional Values and Attitudes
  5. Communication and Interpersonal Skills
  6. Assessment
  7. Intervention
    1. Individual therapy
    2. Crisis Intervention
    3. Group therapy
  8. Supervision
  9. Consultation and Interprofessional/Interdisciplinary Skills
    1. Outreach Programming
    2. Staff/Faculty Consultations
    3. Behavioral Health Team

Internship Admissions, Support, and Initial Placement Data

Minimal Eligibility and Qualifications

Applicants must complete all formal requirements towards Ph.D. or Psy.D. candidacy in Counseling or Clinical Psychology (preferably APA accredited), including:

  • All course work necessary for the title of doctoral candidate including comprehensive exams.
  • Acceptance of dissertation proposal by dissertation committee no later than the APPIC ranking date.
  • Clinical experience with college student population preferred.
  • A minimum of 500 cumulative supervised hours in direct clinical service as defined by APPIC criteria.
  • At least 400 direct therapy hours; with no less than 300 accrued during the doctoral program.
  • Experience with intellectual and personality assessment measures.
  • Hours must be accumulated no later than the APPIC ranking date.
  • CAPS seeks individuals who are team players, have strong communication skills, practice good self-care, are open to learning, value consultation and supervision, and value self-reflection as a tool for professional development.

Internship Program Admissions

Date Program Tables are updated: 08/25/20

Briefly describe in narrative form important information to assist potential applicants in assessing their likely fit with your program. This description must be consistent with the program’s policies on intern selection and practicum and academic preparation requirements
The University of Nevada-Las Vegas Student and Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) is currently accepting applications for four full-time, one-year paid (2000 hour) positions for the 2021-2022 internship year. All the internship training is based on a Practitioner-Scholar model with a primary emphasis on competence in the practice of professional psychology that is influenced by the science of psychology. Theory, research, and practice mutually inform each other. Interns are guided and encouraged in their pursuit of observing, inferring, formulating, and evaluating clinical hypotheses. The integration of science and practice is encouraged through the use of seminars, readings from scholarly publications, generating clinical hypotheses to explore in supervision, learning the empirical bases that guide the use of comprehensive assessment, and participating in professional development activities on best current practices in clinical practice. A part of competent practice also includes being informed about the influential and current theoretical and research-bases of psychology and other related fields, especially evidence-based treatment.
Does the program require that applicants have received a minimum number of hours of the following at time of application? If Yes, indicate how many:
Total Direct Contact Intervention Hours Yes Amount: 500
Total Direct Contact Assessment Hours No Amount: 0
Describe Any Other Required Minimum Criteria Used to Screen Applicants
Applicants must complete all formal requirements towards Ph.D. or Psy.D. candidacy in Counseling ot Clinical Psychology (preferably APA accredited), including: all coursework necessary for the title of doctoral candidate including comprehensive exams. Acceptance of dissertation proposal by dissertation committee no later than the APPIC ranking date. Clinical experience with college student population preferred. A minimum of 500 cumulative supervised hours in direct clinical services as defined by APPIC criteria. At least 400 direct therapy hours; with no less than 300 accrued during the doctoral program. Hours must be accumulated no later than the APPIC ranking date.

Financial and Other Benefit Support for Upcoming Training Year*

Annual Stipend/Salary for Full-time Interns $35,568
Annual Stipend/Salary for Half-time Interns N/A
Program provides access to medical insurance for intern? Yes
If access to medical insurance is provided:
Trainee contribution to cost required? No
Coverage of family member(s) available? Yes
Coverage of legally married partner available? Yes
Coverage of domestic partner available? Yes
Hours of Annual Paid Personal Time Off (PTO and/or Vacation) 120 hours
Hours of Annual Paid Sick Leave 80 hours
In the event of medical conditions and/or family needs that require extended leave, does the program allow reasonable unpaid leave to interns/residents in excess of personal time off and sick leave? Yes
Other Benefits (please describe): Parental Leave Policy
If an intern needs parental leave, they should consult with the Training Director as soon as feasible, who will consider a multitude of factors and come up with a plan that is in the best interest of the intern’s training needs, CAPS, cohort members, and UNLV.

Initial Post-Internship Positions

Provide an Aggregated Tally for the Preceding 3 Cohorts
  2017-2020
Total # of interns who were in the 3 cohorts 10
Total # of interns who did not seek employment because they returned to their doctoral program/are completing doctoral degree 0
  PD EP
Community mental health center - -
Federally qualified health center - -
Independent primary care facility/clinic - -
University counseling center  1 -
Veterans Affairs medical center  - -
Military health center  - -
Academic health center  - -
Other medical center or hospital  - -
Psychiatric hospital  - -
Academic university/department 1 -
Community college or other teaching setting - -
Independent research institution - -
Correctional facility - -
School district/system - -
Independent practice setting 4 3
Not currently employed - -
Changed to another field - -
Other 1 -
Unknown - -

Note: “PD” = Post-doctoral residency position; “EP” = Employed Position. Each individual represented in this table should be counted only one time. For former trainees working in more than one setting, select the setting that represents their primary position.

Application Procedures

APPIC Match Number 2293

Refer to the APPIC website for more details and complete application instructions for applying online. All application materials listed below are uploaded via the APPIC applicant portal. We do not accept any paper materials. Interested candidates should submit:

  • Completed AAPI online.
  • Cover letter.
  • Current curriculum vitae.
  • Official graduate transcript(s).
  • The Academic Program’s Verification of Internship Eligibility and Readiness.
  • Three letters of recommendation, with at least two from clinical supervisors who will speak directly about the quality of your clinical work and your engagement in clinical supervision.
  • Background check upon hire, based on Student Wellness requirements.
  • All materials must be submitted for review online by December 1, 2020. This internship site agrees to abide by the APPIC policy that no person at this training facility will solicit, accept, or use any ranking-related information from any intern applicant.
  • We will notify applicants of selection for an interview by December 14, 2020. Interviews will be conducted by phone and/or Skype and will be set up and conducted in late December and early-mid January.
  • Match Day is Friday, February 19, 2021. Our APPIC Code is 2293.

Training Year and Benefits

We will offer four positions for the 2021-2022 internship year. The internship is 40 hours per week starting August 2, 2021. The stipend will be $35,568 plus benefits paid monthly. Interns also receive university holidays and annual, sick, and professional development leave. The leave is intended for an intern’s dissertation defense, job interviews, and conferences. The timing of this leave is subject to approval of the Training Coordinator. All interns will have a private office with a computer, printer, webcam for videotaping, and library privileges.

Internship Responsibilities

The UNLV CAPS Doctoral Internship is a 2000 hour experience, with the expectation of 500 hours of direct service activities. Interns will be able to gain experience through a wide range of activities some of which will be negotiated individually by each trainee based on their interest areas and the needs of the center. The doctoral internship in includes these components:

Direct Service

  • Intake Assessments
  • Brief Individual and Couples Counseling
  • Group Counseling
  • Triage Coverage (4 hours/week)
  • Supervision of a therapist in training
  • Consultation

Training Activities

  • Training Seminars, including: Multicultural Seminar, Intern Case Conference, Supervision of Supervision, and Clinical and Professional Issues Seminar. Additionally, training seminars will include didactics such as:
    • Brief Psychotherapy
    • Crisis/Suicidal/At-Risk Clients
    • Ethics
    • Group Counseling
    • Couples Counseling
    • Mindfulness
    • Theories of Psychotherapy
    • Eating Disorders
  • Clinical Assessment Team meeting
  • Individual Supervision
  • Supervision of Group Therapy
  • Meeting with the Training Coordinator
  • Staff Meeting

Other Activities

  • Prep time/Admin time/Dissertation time.
  • Rotation depending on intern interests and center needs. Examples include, but are not limited to: Behavioral Health, Eating Disorders, Multicultural Competence, Disabilities, and Outreach.

Sample Schedule

Weekly Activities for CAPS Interns (approximate)
Intern weekly Activities Fall Hours/Week
August–December
Spring Hours/Week
January–May
Summer Hours/Week
May–July
Direct Service
Individual/Couples Therapy* 12 12 14
Intakes 3 3 3
Group Therapy 1.5-3 1.5-3 1.5
Triage 4 4 4
Clinical Total
*Hours will adjust depending on number of groups
20.5-22 20.5-22 22.5
Other Service
Supervision of Practicum Student 1 1 0
Outreach/Consultation 1 1 2
Total 2 2 2
Training
Clinical and Professional Issues Seminar 1 1 0
Individual Supervision 2 2 2
Group Supervision 1 1 1
Intern Case Conference (every other week) 1 1 1
CAT Meeting 1 1 1
Supervision Seminar/Sup of Sup (weekly) 1 1 0
Multicultural Seminar (every other week) 1 1 0
Rotation Supervision 1 1 1
Professional Development Supervision 1 1 1
 Outreach Seminar 1 1 0
Training Total 11 11 7
Support Activities
Dissertation/Research Time 2 2 2
Administrative/Case Management 5 5 5
Staff Meeting .5-1.5 .5-1.5 .5-1.5
Support Activities Total 7.5-8.5 7.5-8.5 7.5-8.5
Total 40-41.5 40-41.5 40

Commitment to Diversity

The UNLV CAPS doctoral internship recognizes the importance of cultural and individual differences and diversity in the training of psychologists. The training program is committed to providing a rich multicultural experience for interns. As a campus community, U.S. News and World Report named UNLV as tied for the most diverse college campus in 2016-2017. Additionally, UNLV was designated as a Minority Serving Institution (MSI) by the U. S. Department of Education in December 2012. See the following links for additional information:

The University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV) is a large, urban, and diverse campus located in the heart of Las Vegas. According to the 2013 US Census estimate, the population of the Las Vegas metropolitan area was 2,027,828. The 2018 Census reported that the racial composition of Las Vegas was 62.7% White, 32.7% Hispanic or Latino, 12.2% Black or African American, 6.7% Asian, 4.8% Multiracial, .7% Native American and .7% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander. At UNLV, the main Paradise campus, where CAPS is located, is just over a mile east of the Las Vegas Strip.

UNLV is an Equal Opportunity Affirmative Action Employer Committed to Achieving Excellence Through Diversity.

CAPS offers bilingual therapy (Spanish).

CAPS/Student Wellness has ADA approved wheelchair accommodations for doors, hallways, and an emergency wheelchair stairwell system (Evacu Trac).