Practica and Internships are clinical experiences that meet specific guidelines established by CACREP. Practica are intended to help students develop their counseling skills under supervision and internship is meant to give students to the opportunity to experience the professional role of counselors in an agency or school setting under supervision.
Students must earn a "B" or better in all practicum courses in order to be eligible for internship.
The student must obtain liability insurance prior to participating in any practicum course; proof is required when applying for candidacy. This insurance must be maintained throughout practicum and internship. Students in clinical courses are required to purchase liability insurance. Liability insurance is available through ACA and other insurance companies. ACA includes liability insurance with membership. Proof of insurance must be shown to the instructor or professor before participating in any clinical work with external clients. Failure to obtain insurance may result in suspension or dismissal from the course. Applications for the American Counseling Association (ACA) and for insurance are available online at www.counseling.org. Both ACA membership and liability insurance are available at reduced rates for students.
Students are eligible to enroll in the practicum courses after attaining candidacy and completing appropriate prerequisites. Scheduling conflicts can be minimized if the student keeps in close contact with the program advisor. Not all courses are offered every semester.
The practicum experience will be afforded to the students through the following courses: Practicum I: Individual and Vocational Counseling (COUN 8842); Practicum II: Individual and Vocational Counseling (COUN 8845); and Practicum in Group Counseling (COUN 8856). COUN 8844 is oriented to children and adolescents and is the required practicum course for school counseling majors. Sessions in this course are conducted in school settings. COUN 8842, COUN 8845 and COUN 8856 are designed for counseling adults and are necessary for working in community agencies.
The minimum requirement for the practicum courses is one hundred (100) hours, of which a minimum of forty (40) hours will be direct contact (individual/group counseling, consultation, etc.). These experiences should be documented on the Practicum Supervision form that the student is required to maintain and submit prior to internship.
During the practicum courses students should:
1. Earn 40 hours of direct client contact (including individual counseling and group work).
2. Participate in one hour per week of individual (up to 2 supervisees) supervision a week by a faculty member.
3. Participate in an average of 1.5 hours of group supervision a week provided by a faculty member.
A student is eligible to apply for internship after the successful completion of the practicum courses. Applications (and deadlines) are available online at www.govst.edu/gregg. Click "Current Students". The completed application will be returned to the advisor. Each semester the advisor will review the application and convene a meeting of the counseling faculty. The faculty will review the application and approve or make alternative recommendations. When applicable, students will be notified of their acceptance for internship.
Students will be assigned to an internship supervisor with his/her sequence. Internship sites will be discussed and negotiated with the supervisor. When site approval has been established, the site procedures for interviews, hours, etc. must be followed. It is recommended that each potential intern review the syllabus, taking special note of the student, university coordinator and agency supervisor responsibilities.
The internship requires 600 hours—Clinical Mental Health, Marriage and Family, and School students must complete two semesters of internship. A minimum of 240 hours will be direct service--individual/group counseling, testing and/or consultation. The other 360 hours will include report writing, agency meetings, supervision, professional development, special projects, etc. Students are required to participate in one hour of individual supervision on-site and 1.5 hours of group supervision hours a week on-campus from a faculty supervisor. The evaluation of the intern will be conducted by the faculty supervisor and site supervisor. The intern will have an opportunity to evaluate the site and the supervision experience.
The internship experience is the culminating activity for all counseling students. It gives the student the opportunity to integrate what he or she has learned in the classroom and consolidate that learning in an applied setting. Internship placement for clinical mental health and marriage and family majors are normally available throughout the year. School counseling internships are not available during the summer semester.