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Psychology Internship Program

Children's National Health System offers a comprehensive internship program in child clinical and pediatric psychology to doctoral students in psychology. The internship is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association, initially earning accreditation in 1970.

The Pre-Doctoral Internship Training Program 

Goals and Objectives

Goals and Objectives

The goal of the internship program at Children’s National is to train professional psychologists who have a particular interest in child clinical and/or pediatric psychology. The program is designed to encourage the development of clinical competence with children and families, with sensitivity to, and facility with, cultural differences, ethical issues, interdisciplinary relationships and the changing environment of health care, including funding issues.

The internship adheres to the nine Profession-Wide Competencies set out by the American Psychological Association’s Standards of Accreditation for Health Services Psychologists. These standards are essential for performing all services in the field of psychology. These competencies include:

  • Research
  • Ethical and Legal Standards
  • Individual and Cultural Diversity
  • Professional Values, Attitudes and Behaviors
  • Communication and Interpersonal Skills
  • Assessment
  • Intervention
  • Supervision
  • Consultation and Interprofessional/Interdisciplinary Skills

Interns develop these competencies through the well-rounded curriculum and by achieving the specific objectives for our program, as outlined below.

Objectives of Training Include

(1) Interns will develop facility with a range of diagnostic skills, including: interviews, history taking, risk assessment, child protective issues, diagnostic formulation, triage, disposition and referral.

(2) Interns will develop skills in psychological intervention, including: environmental interventions, crisis intervention, short-term and long-term individual psychotherapy, group and family psychotherapy and behavioral medicine techniques.

(3) Interns will develop facility with a range of assessment techniques, including electives in: developmental testing, cognitive testing, achievement testing, assessment of behavior/emotional functioning, assessment of parent-child relationships and family systems and neuropsychological evaluation.

(4) Interns will develop facility with psychological consultation, through individual cases and participation in multidisciplinary teams, including consultation to: parents, mental health staff (e.g., psychiatrists, social workers) medical staff (e.g., physicians, nurses, PT, OT, etc.), school systems and the legal system. Consultation training occurs in both the inpatient and outpatient setting, both downtown and in the suburbs and ranges from primary to tertiary care.

(5) Interns will learn the clinical, legal and ethical issues involved in documentation of mental health services within a medical setting.

(6) Interns will integrate science and practice in assessment, intervention and consultation. Interns are trained in empirically-supported treatments, behavioral medicine protocols and empirically-supported assessment techniques. Interns are exposed to research in many of these areas in their work with psychology faculty.

(7) Interns will develop assessment batteries, treatment goals and consultative relationships based on the clinical issues at hand, while also considering potential limitations imposed by managed care and health policy and other issues of third party or family payment for mental health services. Interns will appreciate the range of vehicles for service delivery (e.g., primary care versus specialty clinics), which allow access to a variety of populations with social, financial and other obstacles to mental health.

In summary, the program provides extensive training in the many roles and functions psychologists play in health care today. The intended result of this training is a broadly experienced child clinical/pediatric psychologist who can succeed in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, universities or the broader community.

Former Interns

Initial positions of the 84 interns who have completed the program since 1997:

Post-Doctoral Fellowships: 62
Return to University to Complete Dissertation: 10
Research Position: 7
Clinical Position: 3
Teaching Position: 2

Training Experience

Training Experience

This internship provides the trainee with the opportunity to take substantial responsibility for carrying out his or her major professional functions in the context of appropriate supervisory support. The program is arranged on both a longitudinal and rotational basis. It is designed around a fundamental curriculum, which focuses on intern competencies in assessment, diagnostic interviewing, intervention, case management and triage, consultation and critical thinking about clinical case material. Interns are exposed to training in empirically supported treatments for a range of pediatric conditions. Intern participation in multidisciplinary teams and specialty clinics affords them the opportunity for limited supervision of and role-modeling for, psychology externs and medical students. Each intern’s schedule is individualized according to his/her special interests and training needs.



Sample Rotational Schedule

Outpatient Psychotherapy (10 patients per week): 12 months

Inpatient Unit: 3 months (rotations are half a day for 5 days/week)

Primary Care: 3 months (rotations are half a day for 5 days/week)

Outpatient Assessment: 6 months (rotation is 2 days/week)

Consultation/Med. Specialty: 3 months/ 3 months (1 day/week each) *Please note that interns may elect to add a medical specialty rotation or research rotation in lieu of 1 of their 2 days of assessment.

Full Year Rotation

Outpatient Therapy 

Throughout the entire year, interns carry 10 outpatient cases in a clinic located at the Sheikh Zayed campus. This clinic provides training for psychology interns and externs, child psychiatry fellows and general psychiatry residents. The patient population in the outpatient clinic at the hospital is economically diverse and often includes families with multiple psychological, social and medical problems. Referrals to the outpatient clinics come from community physicians, public and private schools and other departments within the hospital.

Interns obtain closely supervised practice in therapeutic intervention, including individual child therapy and family therapy. There may be opportunities for work in group therapy settings as well. A varied caseload is assigned to each intern. Interns are encouraged to individualize their caseloads according to their special interests. 

It should be noted that training in issues of child abuse and neglect is provided throughout the outpatient and inpatient programs. Interns who have a special interest in this area may be assigned to a psychology supervisor in the Freddie Mac Child and Adolescent Protection Center.

Clinical Child Semester Rotations

Inpatient Experience

Interns spend 4 half days per week for 3 months on the Psychiatry Inpatient Units, with an additional half day protected for paperwork. These are short stay facilities for seriously disturbed younger children (ages 5-13) or adolescents (ages 14-18). The Units have an eclectic orientation including psychodynamic, behavioral and family components. Interns rotating on this service become case managers and therapists and participate in the diagnostic assessment of children who are strikingly uncommunicative, withdrawn, depressed or hyperactive. Interns are also expected to consult with the psychiatry, child life, nursing staff and the education staff in the design and implementation of the milieu treatment programs on this unit. Interns carry a caseload of 2 patients at a time.

Primary Care Experience

Interns spend 4 half days per week for 3 months performing consults and short-term therapy in the Child and Adolescent Health Clinics. Interns have an additional half day protected for paperwork. This rotation involves providing mental health consultation within a primary care setting as part of multi-disciplinary team. Direct services are provided to children, adolescents, young adults and families. Consultations for patients include initial assessment, service referrals and follow-up to help ensure linkage to mental health care. Consultation is also provided to medical providers. The opportunity for brief patient intervention is also available and tailored to the interests and learning needs of the intern.

Assessment/Medical Specialty Semester Rotations

Outpatient Assessment Experience

During the 6 months that interns are not rotating through the Inpatient Psychiatric Units and Primary Care, they complete 2 assessment rotations. Interns spend one full day per week on each assessment rotation Please note that it may be possible to substitute an additional medical specialty rotation in lieu of 1 testing day, based on intern preference. It should also be noted that several assessment rotations occur at satellite clinics, which are not readily accessible by public transportation.

Interns are responsible for writing 2 full outpatient assessment reports per month for each assessment rotation. Assessment rotations are described below:

The Hyperactivity, Attention and Learning Problems (HALP) Clinic is an evaluation and treatment program for children and adolescents with a variety of school problems, including ADHD, learning disorders and disruptive behavior disorders. The intern’s role includes conducting intake and feedback sessions, administration and interpretation of a variety of psychological tests, presentation of results at team meetings and report writing. The HALP Clinic is located at the Regional Outpatient Center in Fairfax, Va.

The Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology is headquartered at the Shady Grove Regional Outpatient Center and also serves patients at the Sheikh Zayed campus and in other outpatient centers in Northern Virginia and Maryland. The Division provides outpatient evaluations to children of all ages, infancy through young adult. Children commonly seen for neuropsychological services include those with known medical or neurological disorders (e.g., epilepsy, brain tumor, leukemia, sickle cell, concussion, traumatic brain injury, hydrocephalus and brain infections), as well as those with neurodevelopmental disorders or difficulties. The Pediatric Neuropsychology rotation involves training in a process-oriented, hypothesis-testing model of assessment. Interns will gain experience in test administration, scoring, interpretation, report writing and verbal communication of results to families and other professionals, supervised by a neuropsychologist (see faculty list below).Interns are invited to participate in the weekly Pediatric Neuropsychology seminar and other didactic opportunities.The standard rotation (1 day/week for 6 months) can be described as an exposure to clinical neuropsychology using the taxonomy for education and training guidelines. An enhanced pediatric neuropsychology experience (two neuropsychology rotations) can be made available to those for whom this is a specialty interest area or who wish to prepare for a future postdoc in neuropsychology. Please let us know if this is an area of interest. Interns may be exposed to one or more of the following specific clinical populations:

  • General medical/developmental disorders  
  • Attention and Executive Function Disorders  
  • Mild Traumatic Brain Injury/ Sports Concussions 

The Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders (CASD), located at the Shady Grove Regional Outpatient Center, within the Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology, provides multidisciplinary evaluation and treatment services for children with autism spectrum disorders and their families, with a particular specialty in working with high-functioning forms of autism. Interns completing this rotation will be involved in assessing individuals having, or suspected of having, ASD. Interns completing this rotation will administer and interpret tests, write assessment reports, conduct school consultations and present results at both multidisciplinary meetings and in feedback sessions with families. In addition, CASD offers intervention services for families, including behavior management, social skills and executive function skills groups for children, parent education groups and school planning assistance. Interns may choose to spend part of their afternoons involved in these focused treatment programs within the Center. The standard rotation in CASD provides an exposure to this population (per the taxonomy for education and training guidelines). An enhanced experience (two days per week for 6 months) may be available to interns with a particular interest in autism spectrum disorders. Options in this rotation include:

  • Developmental assessment of younger children
  • Neuropsychological assessment of children and adolescents (for interns with prior experience in neuropsychology and/ or autism assessment)

The Child Development Program, located at the main hospital, provides developmental evaluation and diagnostic assessment of children ages birth to 3 years of age. Interns are supervised in administration, scoring, interpretation and feedback with instruments that are specialized for this young population (e.g., Bayley Scales, DAS-II). Children referred for evaluation may have a wide range of conditions affecting development, including genetic conditions, birth complications, neurologic injury, chronic illness, etc., or may be on an atypical path of development. Patients reflect a broad cross-section of sociocultural circumstances. Parent education/training is emphasized as part of the assessment process. The intern may choose to participate in inpatient consultation or in the Down Syndrome Clinic as part of this rotation. 

Pediatric Consultation Service

During the 6 months that interns are not rotating through the Inpatient Psychiatric Units and Primary Care, they spend 1 day per week for 3 months on the Pediatric Consultation Service. This is a busy clinical service that provides mental health consultation and liaison to medical teams. Referrals include a vast array of mental health concerns for children with acute and chronic illnesses, such as gastrointestinal illness, asthma, cystic fibrosis, renal disorders, toxic ingestion, burns and trauma. Psychology interns and psychiatry residents participate together in clinical rounds and didactic education.

Medical Specialty Rotation

All interns complete a 3-month medical specialty rotation. These rotations occur during the 6 months that interns are not placed on the Inpatient Psychiatric Units. Interns devote 1 day per week to this rotation. As noted above, a 6-month medical specialty rotation may be added in lieu of 1 day of outpatient assessment. It should be noted that consultation and treatment skills are similar with the different medical populations, though the clinical issues may vary. Interns choose from the following, although not all are guaranteed to be offered each year:

  • The Sleep Disorders clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic, housed in the Pulmonary Department. Sleep disorders affect children and their families at all stages of development and are increasingly recognized as important causes of affective, behavioral and attentional regulation. Interns participating in this clinic will receive didactic training in the normal development of sleep and experiential training in the diagnosis and treatment of sleep disorders.
  • The Department of Pulmonology and Sleep Medicine provides outpatient and inpatient services for children diagnosed with chronic and acute respiratory conditions including Cystic Fibrosis, Asthma, chronic cough, as well as management of children with respiratory complications associated with other chronic illness (neuromuscular diseases, Sickle Cell). The internship rotation consists of inpatient consultation/liaison and outpatient therapy, with an emphasis on cognitive/behavioral and parent training approaches. The intern will provide diagnostic, consultation and long-term treatment to patients with a focus on education, coping with chronic illness, treating psychogenic causes of respiratory illness, adherence, evaluation of co-morbid psychiatric and behavioral problems, parent training and family coping.
  • The Endocrinology (diabetes) rotation involves working as part of a multidisciplinary team that provides services to young children through young adults with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The disciplines involved in children’s care include medicine, nutrition, nursing, social work and psychology. Interns on this rotation have the opportunity to participate in consultation and treatment for children primarily diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Consultations include meeting with children/families: around the time of diagnosis, at medical outpatient clinic visits, as medical inpatients following periods of management difficulties, and when transitioning to more intense medical regimens. Outpatient treatment cases present with a variety of problems including adjustment to illness, poor adherence to the regimen, mood concerns and family conflict.
  • The Obesity rotation involves providing psychosocial services for youth needing support for weight management. A rotation in the Obesity subspecialty involves assessment for bariatric surgery readiness and providing short-term behavioral management and motivational support to promote adherence to medical recommendations.
  • The Allergy and Immunology rotation involves providing services to a diverse population of children and adolescents who are diagnosed with food allergies, environmental allergies, asthma, eczema and primary immunodeficiency disorders. During this rotation, interns will conduct consultation-liaison services during the oral food challenge clinic. Interns will see approximately 4-6 patients/week ranging in age from infancy to young adulthood. Primary concerns during this clinic are patient and parent anxiety related to potentially experiencing an allergic reaction during the oral food challenge. Interns who participate in this rotation will also see 2-3 outpatients a week. Primary mental health concerns among this population are anxiety and depressive symptoms related to food allergies and primary immunodeficiency disorders (generally school-age children) and behavior management related to eczema treatment (generally preschool-age children). Interns may also complete brief consultations with parents of young children who need assistance transitioning their child to the school setting for the first time. Therapy includes medical psychoeducation and CBT techniques.
  • The Behavioral Pain Medicine Program at Children’s National is a multidisciplinary outpatient program specializing in pediatric chronic pain conditions. The intern will receive training in evaluation and treatment for youth with chronic and complex pain conditions including recurrent abdominal pain, musculoskeletal pain, complex regional pain syndrome, headaches/migraines, and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), in addition to various somatic symptom related disorders. Physicians, psychologists, physical therapists, nurses and interns work collaboratively to address the complex needs of these patients and their families with the goal of increasing patients’ functioning and improving overall quality of life. Treatment utilizes a multimodal approach with an emphasis on cognitive, behavioral, parent training, biofeedback, and acceptance and mindfulness based interventions. Extensive collaboration with schools is an integral piece of the program.
  • The Nephrology (renal transplant) rotation involves participation in a multidisciplinary team that provides pre- and post-transplant care to young children through young adults with chronic kidney disease. Interns participating in this clinic will receive training in evaluation, consultation and treatment for children receiving renal replacement therapy (dialysis and transplantation). The rotation consists of services including coping with chronic illness, motivational support to promote adherence and behavioral management in the inpatient unit, outpatient clinic and dialysis unit.
  • Within the Division of Gastroenterology, the Celiac Disease Program is dedicated to providing services to children and adolescents with celiac disease, an autoimmune condition that requires a strict gluten-free diet as the primary treatment. The celiac team is multidisciplinary and includes physicians, nurse educators, dietitians, neurologists, neuropsychologists and psychologists, who all meet with every family attending the clinic. Psychology team members offer psychological consultations for all patients attending the clinic as well as outpatient therapy to assist with medical, emotional and behavioral management of the illness. Common referral issues include coping with the celiac diagnosis, poor adherence to the gluten-free diet, anxiety, depression, eating and feeding disorders and family conflict.
How to Apply

How to Apply

Application Procedure and Deadline

Applications must be received on or before November 1, 2018. As a member of the Association for Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC) and in accordance with its policies, our application constitutes the AAPI Online Form. We require 2 letters of recommendation in addition to the letter from the training director of your program which is included in the AAPI Online Form.


Interviews are by invitation only. In order to be considered for an interview, your completed application must be received by November 1, 2018. Interviews and tours will be conducted on only 2 dates: January 9th and 16th of 2019. We will not be able to conduct individual interviews on additional dates. Invitations for interviews will be sent before December 15. Please do not call before December 15th.

Offers and Acceptances

The Internship Program at Children's Hospital is a member of the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC). This site agrees to abide by the APPIC policy that no person at this training facility will solicit, accept or use any ranking information from any intern applicant. Children’s National will be participating in the APPIC Internship Matching Program; applicants should register for the match.



The program is rounded out with a variety of didactic seminars and conferences on development, psychopathology, clinical techniques, medical conditions, health care delivery systems and research. Didactics include the Psychology Seminar and Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Grand Rounds. Interns spend approximately 10 percent of their time in didactic seminars.



Interns who have completed their dissertation research are able to become involved in research programs if they desire. Research opportunities are available with many faculty members, depending on an intern’s special interests and may be included in lieu of a medical specialty rotation, depending on interest and availability. Involvement in research is particularly appropriate for those interns who expect to stay in the D.C. area for postdoctoral training.

Supervision and Mentor Program

Supervision and Mentor Program

Interns receive 4-5 hours of supervision per week, with 1 supervisor assigned for each rotation. The program strives to provide interns with a variety of supervisors in order to take advantage of the many roles, talents and theoretical viewpoints of the faculty.

Supervision is interdisciplinary, with psychology interns being supervised by psychiatrists on the Inpatient units and the Pediatric Consultation service. Supervision is primarily case discussion. However, some clinics offer live supervision and role-modeling by supervisors within multidisciplinary or vertical teams. Facilities include one-way mirrors and videotaping capability, depending on the location.

At the start of the training year, each intern is assigned a faculty mentor, who does not serve as a supervisor, who is able to focus on the intern’s professional development (e.g., assist with time management issues, the development of self-confidence, etc.). Along with the training director, mentors play a special role in helping interns with future career plans.


Interns are evaluated formally by their supervisors at the end of each rotation or semiannually on twelve-month rotations. Supervisors rate interns on a set of scales designed to evaluate their performance on the nine Profession-Wide Competencies and discuss feedback with the interns. These evaluations are primarily designed to ensure that the interns are making optimal use of their training year. Letters are sent to the director of each intern's doctoral training program at the completion of the internship.

The internship is conceptualized as an evolving training program, with continuous self review and quality enhancement. Interns and staff engage in periodic evaluation of the program's goals and its method of implementing these goals. Interns complete annual evaluations on seminars, supervisors and rotations. The training director has regular meetings with both the training staff and the interns to discuss and evaluate the program.



The Children’s National internship program is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association. Applicants may contact the American Psychological Association’s Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation for additional information pertaining to our accreditation.

Phone: 202-336-5979 
Address: 750 First Street, N.E.
Washington, D.C. 20002-4242

Stipend and Benefits

Stipend and Benefits

Interns receive a yearly stipend of $27,560.00 plus the fringe benefit package for all trainees at Children’s National. Interns have 4 weeks of paid vacation, 8 national holidays and 12 days of sick leave. Subsidized health insurance and parking are available.



The doctoral internship is a full-time experience for the calendar year, beginning July 1, 2019 and ending June 30, 2020.




Psychology and Neuropsychology Faculty Supervisors

Kaushal Amatya, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Divisions of Nephrology and Cardiology

Kathleen Atmore, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, Developmental Neuropsychologist, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders

Madison Berl, Ph.D., ABPP-CN
Associate Professor, Division of Neuropsychology

Angela Bollich, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Center of Autism Spectrum Disorders

Tara Brennan, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, Director, Child Development Clinic

Yaphet Bryant, Ph.D.
Director of Mental Health Services Ryan White Program (HIV Services)

Lauren Clary, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Endocrinology & Diabetes

Shayna Coburn, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Celiac Disease Program

Lisa Efron, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Director of Training in Professional Psychology, Director, Hyperactivity and Learning Problems (HALP) Clinic

Angela Fletcher, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, Director Behavioral Pain Management Program

Dana Footer, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, Divisions of Hematology, Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant

Gerard Gioia, Ph.D.
Professor and Chief, Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology, Director, Neurobehavioral & Psychosocial Evaluation Core Lab of Clinical and Translational Science Institute, Director, Neurobehavioral Evaluation Core of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center

Leandra Godouy, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Diana L. and Stephen A. Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health

Laura Gray, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Behavioral Pain Medicine, Division of Anesthesiology

Kristina Hardy, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Division of Neuropsychology

Steven Hardy, Ph.D
Assistant Professor, Divisions of Hematology, Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant

Linda Herbert, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Allergy and Immunology

Stacy Hodgkinson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Director of Mental Health and Research, Generations Program, Diana L. and Stephen A. Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health

Sarah Hornack, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology and Behavioral Health

Anne Inge, Ph.D.
University of Miami, Assistant Professor, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders

Laura Kenealy, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Associate Training Director in Neuropsychology

Lauren Kenworthy, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Director, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders

Daniel Lewin, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Sleep Clinic

Eleanor Mackey, Ph.D
Associate Professor, Associate Director of Training in Professional Psychology, Departments of Psychology and Behavioral Health, Surgery, and Center for Translational Sciences

Donna Marschall, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Director, Whole Bear Care: Primary Care Behavioral Health Services

Catherine McGill, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Neuropsychology

Michael Mintz, Psy.D.
Clinical Assistant Professor, Child Development Clinic

Maureen Monaghan, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Center for Translational Sciences, Department of Endocrinology/Diabetes

Julie B. Newman, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Neuropsychology

Melissa O’Connell Liggett, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Child Development Clinic

Deborah Potvin, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders, Division of Neuropsychology

Cara Pugliese, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders, Division of Neuropsychology

Allison Ratto, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorder, Division of Neuropsychology

Mi-Young Ryee, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Psychology & Behavioral Health

Maegan Sady, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Neuropsychology

Jacqueline Sanz, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Co-Director, Cardiac Neurodevelopmental Outcome Program (CANDO)

Sharon Singh, Ph.D
Assistant Professor, The ARC (Healthy Steps Program)

John Strang, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders and Gender Development Program, Division of Neuropsychology

Randi Streisand, Ph.D.
Director of Psychology Research

Amanda Thompson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Medical Director, Patient Support Services, Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders

Herman Tolbert, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Assistant Director, Clinical and Administrative Services, Freddie Mac Child and Adolescent Protection Center

Carrie Tully, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Division of Trauma and Burn Surgery

Christopher Vaughan, Psy.D.
Assistant Professor, SCORE Clinic

Karin Walsh, Psy.D.
Associate Professor, Depts. of Pediatrics and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Brain Tumor Institute & Gilbert Neurofibromatosis Institute