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San Francisco Health Network Behavioral Health Services Internship Program


Mission

To provide behavioral health internship opportunities that integrate students' academic learning with practical clinical skills within the wellness and recovery model, to enhance workforce diversity, and to promote vocations in public health among graduating professionals.


Overview

Behavioral Health Services (BHS) provides a culturally diverse network of programs, whose services are provided by psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, nurses, health workers, and peer professionals. This interdisciplinary workforce supports the needs of all SF residents who access our system by providing comprehensive behavioral health services to mentally ill adults and emotionally disturbed children, youth, and their families. As a system, we achieve this mission through a Wellness/ Recovery and Trauma Informed philosophy of care. Our emphasis on Wellness/Recovery supports a strength based process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live self-directed lives, and strive to reach their full potential. As a trauma informed workforce we are developing an understanding of trauma and a shared language that transforms our system from one that asks "what is wrong with you?" to one that asks "what happened to you?" We emphasize responding through a lens, guided by six principles: Trauma Understanding, Safety and Stability, Cultural Humility and Responsiveness, Compassion and Dependability, Resilience and Recovery, and Empowerment and Collaboration. These learned strategies cause our workforce to develop individual & organizational resilience in order to create and maintain a healthier, strength focused, trauma-informed response toward our clients and colleagues.


Placement Opportunities

Internships are with our Adult/Older Adult and Children's Civil Service Clinics and throughout our systems of care. In these placements trainees are able to provide a range of behavioral health services; Individual/family therapy, case management, Crisis and Wrap around services. Our internship opportunities are within clinics that are placed around the city of San Francisco. Click here for placement information.


Training

Our internship program provides training opportunities for approximately 40-60 psychology interns, masters-level trainees, peer interns, nursing and nurse practitioner students each year. SF County BHS Civil Service Clinics only accept trainees (a student who is actively enrolled in a graduate program (MSW, MFT, LPCC, Ph.D./Psy.D etc. as defined by their academic institution) into its training program. The only exception to this policy are those seeking post-doctoral placements/supervision. Most students are provided with didactic training seminars at their local placements, others attend the trainings that are provided at other locations within our system of care. We also offer an intern lecture series, which is a monthly presentation on topics that benefit providers in our integrated health care and behavioral health systems. Regular in-service trainings and specialized staff trainings are also available for students to attend through our departmental training unit. Over the past years, there has been training in a wide variety of topics such as Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Solution-Focused Therapy, Attachment Theory, Motivational Interviewing, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, and Suicide Assessment.


Multi-Cultural Stipends

The multi-cultural student stipend is available to students training in behavioral health and substance use disorder treatment programs. The program is designed to assist students in their development of skills to work with culturally diverse populations, to encourage ethnic and cultural diversity among our interns, and to increase the pool of applicants with special skills and knowledge, including language, culture, disabilities and principles on wellness and recovery for future employment with BHS. As part of our human resource development commitment, the MSSP is aimed at providing support to students interested in public sector work, working with populations with health disparities and shortages of culturally and linguistically competent staff.


How to Apply

Check to see if your school and your program is an approved school. If your school or program is not on the list, please be aware that you may not be eligible to intern within BHS. Please review the placement opportunities (see above) and mail your cover letter, resume, and 2 letters of reference to the placement coordinator at the site you are interested in applying to.

If you are accepted into one of the BHS Internship Placements, complete the Student Information Form and return it to Jonathan Maddox, MFT (See below).


General information

For more information, please contact:
Jonathan Maddox, MFT
BHS Internship Coordinator
1380 Howard St 4th Floor, SF 94103
jonathan.maddox@sfdph.org