Approach to training

WCPIP provides experiences consistent with the Local Clinical Scientist Model (Stricker and Trierweiler, 1995) and with ongoing attention to diversity, utilizing the ADDRESSING model (Hays, 2001). The basic philosophy maintains that effective training is accomplished by providing comprehensive experiential opportunities in diverse settings through application of scientific inquiry to clinical problems, and attention to specific, unique qualities of individuals, cultures, and locations. Adhering to this philosophy requires ongoing respect for what science contributes to practice as well as an appreciation of how practice influences science. Being informed and current with respect to the scientific literature results not only in the application of common practices when appropriate but also the development of unique strategies when required by individual needs or circumstances. 

The WCPIP training faculty is committed to assisting interns in identifying, testing, and refining best practices in psychology with respect to empirically supported approaches. Weighing the interpersonal, familial, cultural, regional, economic, and social influences that impact a person's life promotes the "localized" perspective. This process facilitates a match between best practices and the specific needs of the individual.

In keeping with this model, our approach to training is designed to encourage both depth and breadth of knowledge. This is accomplished by providing our interns with ample opportunities to engage in a variety of activities across different settings. Interns spend four days a week at their primary agency and one day at a secondary agency (often referred to as the intern's "switch site"). The primary agency is determined through the APPIC Match, while the secondary agency is chosen by the intern during their first week of internship. This structure ensures that each intern has a unique training experience tailored to their needs and interests while also benefiting from the collegiality and support of the internship cohort.

In addition, this structure yields itself to providing a unique opportunity to treat individuals from diverse populations and backgrounds. Our interns frequently experience rich diversity in their clinical work in regards to race, ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic status, gender, sexual orientation, ability, and age. Indeed, a frequent remark made by WCPIP interns is how surprised they were with the diversity they were exposed to during their training with WCPIP.

It is the intent of WCPIP that we produce generalist practitioners who have entry-level skills by the end of the year. This means that as the year ends, primary interns are expected to provide the same range of services as our permanent staff members at their primary site. As faculty, we are aware of the developmental nature of the intern experience, and strive to provide necessary supervision and support. Early in the year, more time might be spent on modeling, observation, taping, reviewing work samples, and/or co-therapy. As the year progresses, however, interns are expected to operate with increasing autonomy. This is evidenced by interns handling greater caseloads and demonstrating expansion of their skills and thinking about cases, self, and professional issues. 


WCPIP greatly values diversity and strives to ensure an atmosphere in which inclusivity and diversity are emphasized and celebrated. The program is deeply committed to providing a supportive and encouraging learning environment that is appropriate for training diverse interns, as well as increasing intern’s multicultural awareness and ability to work effectively with individuals from a variety of backgrounds. WCPIP endeavors to achieve this through an atmosphere in which openness, trust, compassion, respect and inclusivity are guiding values. 

As such, the program does not discriminate in its programs and activities on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, political affiliation, national origin, gender, gender identity or expression, age, language, culture, sexual orientation, marital/pregnancy/parental status, socioeconomic status, status as a veteran, disability, or any non-merit-based status not mentioned above.

Primary Sites

During the APPIC Matching process, applicants are allowed to apply to up to two primary placements within WCPIP. Interns work within their primary placement four days a week.

These placements are offered within three very different settings: A medical school, a university counseling center, and a behavioral health center/community mental health center. Within each site there is additional variation to the intern experience, depending on training needs and interests. Read more about the specific opportunities available at each site by visiting the links below:

Switch Sites

Interns are encouraged to choose a switch site that either fills a gap in their training, allows them to explore a specialty area, or provides a chance to try something new. They then work at this site one day a week for the entire training year.

Each agency offers at least two switch site opportunities each year. During the first week of internship, interns visit each site and hear about the specific opportunities available. Afterwards, they rank their top three choices and are then assigned to a switch site based off of their rankings. Typically, interns are placed with either their first or second choice.

While switch site opportunities vary each year, examples of recent switch site opportunities include:


Professional identity and development are recognized as integral components of an intern's experience at WCPIP. Interns from all agencies attend weekly didactic seminars together in an effort to foster this. These seminars occur every Thursday afternoon, and are typically two hours in length.

Seminar topics focus on the goals, objectives and competencies of the internship program (see below). While seminar topics vary each year, examples of recent topics include the following:

Once a month, didactic time is designated for peer consultation. During this time, interns are allowed to engage in an activity of their choosing in an effort to foster a sense of community among one another and to provide an opportunity for support and self-care. In the past, interns have used this time to go to local breweries, play laser tag, and tour Wichita museums and landmarks.

In addition to weekly didactics, interns are routinely invited to participate in continuing education opportunities available at agency sponsored workshops and conferences throughout the training year.


In order to facilitate maximal growth and development, each intern receives a minimum of four hours of supervision each week. At least three of those hours are individual supervision. All primary supervisors are licensed psychologists. As might benefit the intern, psychiatrists, social workers and other staff contribute supplementary supervision. Staff meetings, case conferences, and other clinically oriented seminars provide additional learning opportunities.

Core Values

Core Values of the Program are as follows:

The above values are implemented via the following specific goals and objectives.

Goals and Objectives