Intern Training Program

Our current Training Program for Interns and Practicum students will end May 27, 2011.
No future training programs are scheduled at this time.

Training Program Components | Requirements | How to Apply | Professional Staff
| Clinical Supervisors | The University

Our counseling center provides the following services to the university community: personal counseling to individuals and couples, crisis intervention; psychological assessment, group counseling; workshops and in-service presentations; and consultation with individuals, departments, and organizations within the campus community.

Our mission is to meet the psychological needs of a varied and ever-changing population. SSU students range in age from 17 to over 65, including both traditional-aged freshmen and older adults returning to college in order to make life and career changes. Clients vary in ethnicity, country of origin, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation, and life experience.

The issues that clients present are quite diverse. We see many students with mild to moderate depression and anxiety who are concerned about their relationships, sexuality, academic progress, career goals, and inability to manage stress. In addition, a large number of our clients are already on psychotropic medication and have more severe problems including panic attacks, chronic pain, eating disorders, substance abuse, impulse control disorders, suicidal ideation, and difficulties managing their day-to-day lives.

Since 1976, we have included interns and other trainees as an important part of our team, and we strive to create a challenging and supportive environment for learning. Each year we select 4 trainees from graduate programs in universities throughout the Bay Area. We are listed in the California Psychology Internship Council Directory (CAPIC) and follow their guidelines for selection, supervision, and training.

Our training program is designed to enable students to build a strong foundation of assessment, intervention, and case management skills that they can use in future agency and private practice settings, which often require the ability to be effective using a brief therapy approach. Our trainees also have the opportunity to develop skills in providing workshops, community outreach, and group facilitation.

Trainees who are not registered SSU students may obtain a free parking permit and a library card.


Didactic Training

Weekly seminar involving lecture and discussion related to the clinical issues which are commonly encountered when assessing and intervening with individuals and couples. Particular emphasis is placed on working effectively within a brief therapy format. An integrative approach to working briefly is presented which includes interpersonal psychodynamic, existential, cognitive-behavioral, and solution-focused perspectives.

Didactic training also involves discussion of topics which require special attention from the counselor including suicide risk, abuse reporting, domestic violence, sexual assault, substance abuse issues, confidentiality, and other important legal and ethical issues.

Direct Client Contact

All trainees are expected to spend 50% of their total hours in direct contact with clients, which can occur in either scheduled counseling hours or during drop-in hours. Individuals are seen in a brief therapy format with a few exceptions to allow our trainees an experience with counseling over a longer period.


All trainees receive group supervision and an hour each week of individual supervision from a licensed psychologist. Pre-doctoral Interns receive an additional hour of individual supervision.

Community Outreach and Workshops

Our center offers groups and workshops on a variety of themes which have included coping with substance abuse, eating issues and body image concerns, coping with depression and anxiety, gay/lesbian/transgender issues, stress management, and relationship issues. We also do class presentations, conduct in-service workshops, and write articles for the campus newspaper. Trainees are expected to actively participate in outreach activities each semester.


Trainees are expected to be on site 20 hours per week for Practicum and 22 hours per week for Pre-Doctoral Internship each week that school is in session from late August through late May. School is not in session for 5-6 weeks beginning a week prior to Christmas and for 1 week during Spring Break. Staff meetings and training sessions are mandatory and usually occur on two separate days of the week. All trainees are expected to know and act in accordance with the APA ethical standards and relevant California law.


Students who are currently enrolled in a graduate program preparing them to become a licensed therapist in a mental health field are eligible to apply. We prefer that applicants have had 2 years or more of supervised experience providing individual therapy.

Deadlines: As a member of the California Psychology Internship Council (CAPIC), we follow a specific timeline:

Application Materials

Please send us the following:

  • A letter telling us about your experience and why you would like to work in the SSU Counseling and Psychological Services.
  • A resume of educational and work experience.
  • Current letters of recommendation from three people with at least two of whom have supervised and/or observed your work with clients.
  • For applicants for Pre-Doctoral Internship, we also require the CAPIC Eligibility and Readiness Form and the CAPIC Internship Application

Deadlines for Practicum Students: As a member of Bay Area Practicum Information Collaborative (BAPIC), we follow a specific timeline:

  • February 12: Recommended Due Date for Application
  • February and March: Conduct interviews
  • Monday April 12: Notify applicants of decision
Deadlines for Pre-Doctoral Interns: As a member of the California Psychology Internship Council (CAPIC), we follow a specific timeline:
  • First Monday in March: Applications due
  • February and March: Conduct interviews
  • First Monday in April: Notify Pre-Doctoral applicants of decision

Applications should be mailed to:

Internship Training Coordinator
Counseling and Psychological Services
Stevenson Hall - 1088
Sonoma State University
Rohnert Park, CA 94928-3609


Our staff brings a wide range of life experiences and a diversity of theoretical orientations to their work in the Center. Each counselor utilizes an approach unique to his or her own style, philosophy, and interests. Members of our staff have been influenced by a variety of theoretical approaches including interpersonal psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, solution-focused, humanistic-existential, and family systems. Staff members have backgrounds working with community mental health agencies, medical and psychiatric facilities, Peace Corps training, university teaching, consultation, psychological assessment, and private practice. In addition to professional counseling services, the staff serves the university community through consultation, training, academic classes, and campus-wide committees. We adhere to AAMFT and APA Ethical Standards, and are an agency member of CAPIC.


Katie Hatch, Ph.D.
Licensed Psychologist

Michael Pinkston, Ph.D.
Training Coordinator, Licensed Psychologist

Lisa Wyatt, Ph.D.
Director, Licensed Psychologist


Sonoma State University is located one hour north of San Francisco, in the heart of Sonoma County. The campus is just ten minutes from downtown Santa Rosa with shopping, cultural activities, and entertainment nearby. The magnificent Pacific Coast, pastoral wine country, Russian River, and redwood forests are all within a short drive.

For more information: Visit our website at or contact Michael Pinkston, Ph.D. - - (707)664-2214