ServiceNet’s Outpatient Clinic Services Welcomed Newest Cohort of Interns this Fall
ServiceNet’s Outpatient Clinic Services recently welcomed its newest cohort of interns to the team. Outpatient Clinical Services, which provides comprehensive professional counseling services for adults, children, and families, has offered this internship program for over fifteen years with several long-time clinicians, supervisors, and managers starting in the program.
The yearly internship program is open to six to eight clinical social work and mental health counseling graduate students and spans the entire academic year. The combination of social work and mental health counselor interns is part of what Ann Augustine, Director of Outpatient Clinic Services, feels makes the program so successful.
“Part of our philosophy for the program is having people with different training backgrounds learning together,” says Ann. “It’s important to imbed this collaborative learning from the beginning. It absolutely helps new clinicians grow as professionals.”
This network to support learning is evident in all aspects of the internship. Each fall, the program starts with a multiple-day orientation and training schedule that introduces the interns to various ServiceNet clinical staff, who will be valuable mentors during the year. Over the course of the internship, each intern meets weekly with a clinical supervisor who offers support with their clinical work and personal learning goals. Interns also participate in a weekly intern seminar that offers group case consultation, clinically focused readings, and opportunities to learn more about both the process and skills involved with providing therapy.
There are also opportunities to attend clinical consultation teams that focus on specialized treatments such as Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Child and Family Treatment. The goal is to create an environment where the interns can connect, learn, and explore interests with a wide net of support and mentorship.
For Amherst Clinical Director Hannah Mills, who also directs the intern program and started at ServiceNet as an intern in 2011, this varied experience within a community mental health setting was life changing.
“The value of doing this work at ServiceNet is that it’s held within the context of community; connection and collaboration are integral to the work we do with each other as well as the clients we serve,” Hannah says. “As a clinician, working in a community setting is meaningful and the clinical experience offered is foundational—it sets up interns well for wherever they go next in their careers.”
Ann Augustine also sees the internship program as a reflection of larger essential themes in community mental health that her team works to uphold— creating a community rooted in ongoing learning and a commitment to excellence and care.
“No matter how long you have been working in the field, it is still important that we are all learning and growing,” Ann says. “And as much as we teach the interns, they teach us too. The questions, enthusiasm, and ideas they bring are rejuvenating and exciting. It enriches our work in so many ways.”
Interns primarily come through Smith College School for Social Work, Springfield College, Westfield State University, Bay Path, and Antioch University. However, any masters level social work and mental health counseling students in the later stage of their clinical experience are encouraged to apply. If you are interested in learning more about the program, please contact Hannah Mills at [email protected].