Program Information: Division of Student Affairs, Psychological & Wellness Services (PAWS)

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Member Site Information
APPIC Member Number: 2127
Program Type: Internship
Membership Type: Full Membership
Site: University of Washington Tacoma
Department: Division of Student Affairs, Psychological & Wellness Services (PAWS)
Address: 1900 Commerce St.
Box 358423
Tacoma, Washington 98402-3100
Country: United States
Metro Area: Not Applicable
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA
Distance from Major City: In downtown Tacoma; 30 miles south of Seattle
Phone: 253-692-4522x
Web Address:
Brochure Website's Address:
Primary Agency Type: University Counseling Center
Additional Agency Types:
Member of APPIC since:
APA Accreditation Not Accredited
CPA Accreditation Not Accredited
Internship Staff/Faculty Information
Training Director & Lead / Director: Bonnie Benson-Palmgren
Chief Psychologist: Cassandra Nichols
Number of Full-Time Licensed Doctoral Psychologists on Staff/Faculty 4
Number of Part-Time Licensed Doctoral Psychologists on Staff/Faculty 0
Position Information
Start Date: 09/01/2023
Number of Full Time Slots Expected Next Class: 2
Number of Part Time Slots Expected Next Class: 0
Full Time Annual Stipend for Next Class: 35928
Part Time Annual Stipend for Next Class: 0
Fringe Benefits: Dissertation Release Time, Dental Insurance, Disability Insurance, Health Insurance, Life Insurance, Professional Development Time, Sick Leave, Vacation
Other Fringe Benefits (not indicated above): Benefits include dental insurance, disability insurance, health insurance, and life insurance. Interns also participate in the University’s holiday schedule (11 Washington State-recognized holidays annually), accrue sick and vacation time off, and receive an annual personal holiday. The intern salary is considered non-exempt from overtime according to the Fair Labor Standards Act and Washington Minimum Wage Act. Interns are not allowed to accrue overtime hours. Specifically, interns: • are allotted 1 personal holiday (to be taken at any time during the year with supervisor approval). • accrue 10 hours of vacation per month of completed employment (totaling 120 hours or 15 days of vacation annually). Vacation may be taken following the first month’s accrual. Interns are asked to reserve 5 vacation days for the last 5 days of internship to allow staff to transition and prepare for the incoming trainees. • accrue 8 hours of sick leave per month of completed employment (totaling 96 hours or 12 days of sick leave annually). Sick time off accrues at the end of the month in which it is earned and is available for use the following month. • are allotted 5 days of professional leave (e.g. to defend a dissertation or attend professional meetings and conferences).
Brief description of the typical work day for an intern at this training site Interns work a standard week, 8 AM to 5 PM Monday-Friday with a one hour lunch. On any given day, an intern may have a training seminar or staff meeting, 3-4 individual clients, lunch, a group to co-facilitate with senior staff, individual supervision, and an hour for note writing. Activities vary each day. Depending on the policy followed by all of Student Affairs staff (related to COVID-19 changes) at the time of internship, interns may be allotted work from home time. If so, a university laptop will be requested to borrow, but cannot be guaranteed, and thus interns may have to use their personal technology if they wish to work from home. UW Tacoma's PAWS prizes a collegial environment and interns are supported by all staff within the department as well as our colleagues throughout the Division of Student Affairs and the broader campus.
Does this site have practicum psychology students on site? Yes
Doctoral Psychology Practicum StudentsYes
Masters Psychology Practicum StudentsNo
Do Psychology Interns/Postdocs Have the Opportunity to Supervise Practicum Students?Yes
Is this program fully affiliated with one or more doctoral programs? No
Is this program partially affiliated with one or more doctoral programs? No
Internship Application Process
Accepting Applicants: Yes
Application Due Date: 11/18/2022 11:59 PM EST
Interviews at this site are:
  • Not Offered
Interview notification date: 12/05/2022
Tentative interview date: 12/12/22, 12/13/22, 12/14/22, 12/15/22
Interview process description:

A NOTE ABOUT APPLICATIONS: Please include all essays, a cover letter specific to our site, CV, and graduate transcripts. Include 3 letters of recommendation - at least TWO letters must be from DIRECT CLINICAL SUPERVISORS who can speak to your clinical skills. This better helps us assess your goodness of fit with our site. Please do not include any assessment reports or other extra materials.

A NOTE ABOUT HOURS: Our minimum intervention hours of 300 are flexible, given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the availability of practicum experiences for many trainees. We will consider other aspects of the application for goodness of fit in addition to hours. IF YOU DO NOT MEET MINIMUM INTERVENTION HOURS, please include in your cover letter a brief description of the circumstances that prevented you from completing your expected clinical training and a description of what you did instead. We welcome applications from all applicants who feel strongly about completing their training with us.

INVITATION TO INTERVIEW: Following a review of online application materials, applicants whose training, experience, and professional goals most closely parallel the training opportunities available at PAWS will be invited to participate in a Zoom interview. The Training Director will email applicants who are invited to interview and will connect them with the Program Coordinator who will assist applicants with scheduling on a first-come, first-served basis. 

ZOOM INTERVIEWS: The Zoom interviews (of each candidate, one at a time) will take place Dec. 12-15, 2022. Typically two staff members are present (according to their schedules) for the 45-50 minute Zoom interviews and take turns asking questions. We meet as a team at the conclusion of the interviews to discuss the candidates and all staff contribute to the rankings. The Training Director submits and certifies the rank list before the ranking deadline and before the optional open house. See below for information about the open house and rationale for this process. 

COMMITMENT TO EQUITY: Our site is committed to implementing practices in the intern application and interviewing process that are as free from bias as possible. We recognize the socioeconomic impact of traveling for interviews, and thus do not conduct on-site interviews. While there is no way to avoid bias completely, we hope that by offering Zoom interviews and identifying as a staff the assumptions we may make (and thus avoid) based on candidate appearance, accent, visible surroundings and other factors, we are inviting candidates to participate in a process that is thoughtfully and equitably designed.

OPEN HOUSE: We offer an entirely optional open house for those candidates who feel strongly about in some way visiting a site before making their decision. The open house occurs after we have determined our rank order list, and before candidates are required to submit theirs. Even in making plans to attend the open house (while staff are still involved in ranking), applicants communicate exclusively with the Program Coordinator. The Training Director and staff are only informed of the total number of expected attendees, not the names of who will be attending. We welcome candidates to learn as much as they can about us to decide about best fit without concern that their visit (whether virtual or in-person) may influence our rankings of them. The open house is typically held in January with sufficient time for candidates to input their ranking decisions. Candidates are welcome to contact the Training Director, other staff members, and current/former interns at any time with questions. The Training Director is happy to forward email inquiries to the staff/trainees for their responses directly to you.

BACKGROUND CHECK: If a candidate matches with our site, UW Tacoma will conduct a national criminal conviction background check (at no cost to the candidate) along with a self-disclosure questionnaire that will be submitted to UW Human Resources. The background check typically occurs within six months of the internship start date. While hiring is contingent upon successful completion of a background check, a criminal conviction is not an automatic bar to being hired at PAWS. Eligibility for hiring will be determined by the PAWS administration in consultation with UW Human Resources. Applicants who match to our program but do not successfully pass this background check will not be hired as doctoral psychology interns. See RCW 43.43.830 for relevant Washington state regulatory guidelines/definitions.

How to obtain application info: Visit Website
Preferred method of contacting the program: Email the Program
We have matched with interns from these programs: Purdue University (West Lafayette, IN), Adler University (Chicago, IL), University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Wisconsin School of Professional Psychology (Milwaukee, WI), St. Mary's University of Minnesota, Pepperdine University (Malibu, CA), Biola University, Rosemead School of Psychology (La Mirada, CA), Pacifica Graduate Institute (Santa Barbara, CA), Azusa Pacific University (Azusa, CA), Antioch University - Santa Barbara, Alliant University, Los Angeles, Washington State University, Chestnut Hill College (PA), Antioch University - Seattle, Northwest University (Kirkland, WA), Saybrook University (Bellevue, WA), Argosy University - Seattle
Internship Applicant Requirements
US Citizenship Required: No
If NOT a U.S. Citizen, Authorization to Work or to Engage in Practical Training (CPT or OPT) in the US is Required: No
Canadian Citizenship Required: No
If NOT a Canadian Citizen, Authorization to Work in Canada or to Engage in Practical Training (CPT or OPT) in Canada is Required: No
Masters Degree Required: No
Comprehensive Exams Passed: Yes, by application deadline
Dissertation Proposal Approved: Yes, by application deadline
Dissertation Defended: No
Minimum Number of AAPI Intervention Hours (if applicable): 300
Minimum Number of AAPI Assessment Hours (if applicable): 0
Minimum Number of Combined Intervention and Assessment Hours (if applicable):
Minimum Number of Years of Grad Training Required (if applicable): 4
Accepted / Not-Accepted Program Types
Clinical Psychology Accepted
Counseling Psychology Accepted
School Psychology Not Accepted
APA-Accredited Accepted
CPA-Accredited Accepted
Non-Accredited Accepted
Ph.D Degree Accepted
Psy.D. Degree Accepted
Ed.D. Degree Accepted
This institution, department, internship, or postdoctoral program requires trainees to sign a statement about personal behavior and/or religious beliefs as a condition of admission and/or retention in the program: No
How to obtain text of statement:
Other Requirements: BACKGROUND CHECK: If a candidate matches with our site, UW Tacoma will conduct a national criminal conviction background check (at no cost to the candidate) along with a self-disclosure questionnaire that will be submitted to UW Human Resources. The background check typically occurs within six months of the internship start date. While hiring is contingent upon successful completion of a background check, a criminal conviction is not an automatic bar to being hired at PAWS. Eligibility for hiring will be determined by the PAWS administration in consultation with UW Human Resources. Applicants who match to our program but do not successfully pass this background check will not be hired as doctoral psychology interns. See RCW 43.43.830 for relevant Washington state regulatory guidelines/definitions. ..........COVID-19 VACCINATION AND SAFETY PROTOCOLS: In order to protect the health and safety of our community, the University of Washington is requiring all students and personnel to be vaccinated against COVID-19, with certain exemptions allowed. You need to verify that you’ve been vaccinated or declare an exemption. In terms of COVID-19 mitigation measures, please be aware that WA State leans toward higher COVID safety protocols than some other states and PAWS staff take health/safety very seriously. At PAWS, the waiting room and each office are equipped with air purifiers. Additional safety protocols such as mask wearing and physical distancing may change according to the course of the COVID-19 virus. Please access the PAWS website at for information about current safety protocols such as whether sessions are being held remotely. You are also welcome to ask the Training Director (Dr. Benson-Palmgren, about current protocols at any time. Examples of safety measures (in place as of 7/29/22) may include required masking in the PAWS waiting room, use of hand sanitizing stations, and conducting sessions via Zoom because mask wearing can be a barrier to communication during in-person sessions. Supervision and seminars may also be conducted via Zoom, depending on COVID information and staff/trainee comfort, and continuing acceptance of telesupervision by WA State. For information about the UW Tacoma campus safety protocols, which may differ from PAWS protocols (e.g., masks are recommended but not required on campus as of 7/29/22), please visit If clients or providers are sick with any illness, they must stay home, even if fully vaccinated. Enrollment in the Husky Coronavirus Testing program, as well as free rapid test kits and masks, are available for free to all members of the campus community. Please visit for updated COVID-19 related information.
Program Description

UNIQUE UNIVERSITY COUNSELING CENTER INTERNSHIP: The internship at UW Tacoma Psychological & Wellness Services (PAWS) is unique among UCC internships. Our student population is racially/ethnically diverse, traditional and non-traditional in age, economically disenfranchised, and from regional high schools and community colleges. Many are the first in their family to attend college. Ten percent are military affiliated. A fair number present with trauma histories. These are bright, dedicated students and our campus takes pride in their accomplishments. We enjoy a close relationship with Student Affairs, which offers interns the opportunity to learn about all aspects of student life. As therapists, we are honored to serve our students, and we hope you will find as much fulfillment in working here as we do! Our staff is enthusiastic about training; we value the development of trusting professional relationships, the use of supportive feedback, and dedicated efforts toward social justice. Please visit our website and open the Brochure or click through the training pages to learn about Tacoma, the UWT student population, our commitment to diversity, opportunities to provide direct services, seminars, supervision, and other specific elements of our internship training program. 

This program is not APA accredited. Be aware that not every doctoral program allows students to apply to unaccredited sites. PLEASE CHECK WITH YOUR DEPARTMENT'S DIRECTOR OF CLINICAL TRAINING to ensure you are authorized to apply to our site!

*Weekly Activities: Up to 20 hrs Direct Clinical Service [group therapy, individual therapy, same-day appts & crisis sessions (NO after-hours crisis on-call), occasional outreach, supervision of practicum trainees; 3 hrs Didactic Seminars (1.5 hr Clinical & Professional Topics and 1.5 hr Multicultural); 4+ hrs Receiving Supervision (2 hr 1:1 sup, 1.5-2 hr sup of groups, 1 hr sup of sup, 1 hr group sup/case conference); Other Activities include clinical documentation/case management, 1 hr staff meeting, and occasional Psychology Research Seminar Series departmental presentations. Interns' direct service hours are closely monitored and capped to ensure that the educational experience of internship is prioritized; the internship position is non-exempt from overtime and interns are not permitted to work more than 40 hr/wk. At full capacity, interns would spend up to 50% of their time per week providing direct clinical services.

Supervision of Practicum Trainees: The PAWS practicum program is technically a “preinternship” in WA parlance, and as such, practicum trainees (from regional doctoral programs) must receive their supervision from a licensed psychologist. Thus, to afford interns the opportunity to supervise, we provide co-supervision of practicum trainees. We initially have interns observe individual supervision of practicum trainees by senior staff and offer input as they feel ready to do so. Later, senior staff sit in with interns as they provide supervision to practicum trainees. Interns may also provide some training to practicum trainees during the weekly practicum seminar.

Psychological & Wellness Services Staff: PAWS is staffed by four full-time licensed psychologists (in fall 2022 a search to fill our 4th position was underway). Our leadership structure includes the Director, Training Director, Groups Coordinator, and Outreach Coordinator. A full-time Program Coordinator provides administrative support services. We also have a full-time Health Promotions Specialist/Confidential Advocate who serves as our Outreach Coordinator. Each staff member is highly invested in our training program and is eager to support interns’ personal and professional growth throughout the year. Our staff have a variety of theoretical orientations but all work within a developmental framework. We all share a commitment to diversity and social justice. We would love to welcome you to Washington!

Internship Training Opportunities


Adolescents: Yes
Adults: Yes
Older Adults:
Outpatients: Yes
Gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender: Yes
Ethnic minorities: Yes
Spanish-speaking: Yes
Students: Yes
International Students: Yes
Urban: Yes
Low income: Yes
Homelessness: Yes
Other: Non traditional age students, Military-affiliated students

Treatment Modalities

Assessment: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Individual Therapy: EMPHASIS (31% to 49%)
Couples Therapy:
Family Therapy:
Group Therapy: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
Community Intervention: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Consultation/Liaison: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Crisis Intervention: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Brief Psychotherapy:
Long-term Psychotherapy:
Cognitive Rehabilitation:
Primary Care:
Evidenced Based Practice: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
Evidence Based Research:
Supervision of Practicum students : EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)


Health Psychology:
Women's Health: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
HIV/AIDS: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Eating Disorders: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Sexual Disorders:
Sports Psychology:
Rehabilitation Psychology:
Physical Disabilities: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Learning Disabilities: EMPHASIS (31% to 49%)
Developmental Disabilities:
Assessment: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Serious Mental Illness: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
Anxiety Disorders: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Trauma/PTSD: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Sexual Abuse: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Substance Use Disorders: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Sexual Offenders:
Counseling: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Vocational/Career Development: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Multicultural Therapy: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Feminist Therapy: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
Religion/Spirituality: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Empirically-Supported Treatments: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
Public Policy/Advocacy: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Program Development/Evaluation: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Supervision: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
Research: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Integrated health care - primary:
Integrated health care - specialty:

*Research refers primarily to attendance at the semi-monthly Psychology Research Seminar Series hosted by the UWT Social, Behavioral, and Human Sciences department whereby UWT faculty and guest speakers present their research. Interns present their dissertation research spring quarter. 

Additional information about training opportunities: Not all rotations or training experiences may be available as described in the APPIC Directory. Please consult the program's application materials or their website at:  for a complete description of the training opportunities available at this training site. IF the site has not updated their information by August 1, feel free to contact the Training Director for additional information.

Summary of the Characteristics of the Specified Internship Class
2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020 2020-2021 2021-2022 2022-2023
Number of Completed Applications: 35 0 17 19 24
Number of applicants invited for interviews: 20 0 11 17 18
Total number of interns: 2 0 2 2 2
Total number of interns from APA/CPA accredited programs: 2 0 2 2 2
Total number of interns from Ph.D. programs: 1 0 0 0 1
Total number of interns from Psy.D. programs: 1 0 2 2 1
Total number of interns from Ed.D. programs: 0 0 0 0 0
Number of interns that come from a Clinical Psychology program 2 0 1 1 1
Number of interns that come from a Counseling Psychology program 0 0 1 1 1
Number of interns that come from a School Psychology program 0 0 0 0 0
Range of integrated assessment reports: lowest number of reports written 0 0 0 0 0
Range of integrated assessment reports: highest number of reports written 0 0 6 106 72
Summary of Post Internship Employment Settings of Each Internship Class (1st Placement)
2016-2017 2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020 2020-2021 2021-2022
Working on dissertation/Student: 0 0 0 1 0 0
Postdoctoral Fellow: 1 2 0 0 1 0
Community Mental Health Center: 0 0 0 1 1 1
Health Maintenance Organization: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Veteran's Affairs Medical Center: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Military Medical Center: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Private General Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0 0
General Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Other Medical Center: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Private Psychiatric Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0 0
State/County/Other Public Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Correctional Facility: 0 0 0 0 0 0
School District/System: 0 0 0 0 0 0
University Counseling Center: 2 1 0 0 0 0
University Teaching Faculty: 0 0 0 0 0 0
2 or 4 year Undergraduate Teaching Position: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Medical School: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Academic Non-Teaching Position: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Research Position: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Independent Practice: 0 1 0 1 0 1
Other (e.g. consulting): 0 0 0 0 0 0
Not Currently Employed: 0 0 0 0 1 0
Changed to Other Career Field: 0 0 0 0 0 0
Unknown: 0 0 0 0 0 0