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: 09/01/2022
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: 35568
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): Interns are eligible for 11 scheduled holidays, 1 personal holiday, 8 hours of sick leave per month, 10 hours of annual leave per month (15 days total, with 5 taken at end of year), and 5 days of professional leave (e.g., to defend a dissertation or attend professional meetings and conferences). Interns are eligible to participate in the University of Washington Retirement Plan (UWRP). Interns also enjoy access to email, internet, a world class library system, free/fast light rail from campus to the other end of downtown/farmer's market and the Tacoma Dome, discounted citywide bus pass, discount on UW Husky apparel at bookstore, and shops/eateries across the street. 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.
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. 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: 11/19/2021 11:59 PM EST
Application Due Date Time Zone:
This program uses the AAPI: Yes
An onsite interview is:
  • Not Offered
Interview notification date: The data is not updated for current year. We are showing the previous data.

Tentative interview date: 12/13/2021
Interview process description:

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 telephone 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. 

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.

Phone Interviews: The phone interviews will take place Dec. 13-17, 2021. Typically two staff members are present (according to their schedules) for the 45-50 minute phone 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. We also acknowledge that bias can impact interviews in which candidates are visible to the interviewers. While there is no way to avoid bias completely, we hope that by offering telephone interviews, we are inviting candidates to participate in a process that is thoughtfully and equitably designed.

Open House Rationale: 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 submitted and certified 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 near the end of January with sufficient time for candidates to input their ranking decisions. Candidates are welcome to contact the Training Director to request to speak with other staff members and current/former interns at any time (via email).

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 one month 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: 300
Minimum Number of AAPI Assessment Hours: 0
Minimum Number of Years of Grad Training Required: 3
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:
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. In addition, 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 PDF document that describes our internship program. There, you will see details about our student population, PAWS mission and values, and the philosophy and specific elements and time commitments of our internship training program. Our website is typically updated by September 1 each year.

While the PAWS internship is not yet APA accredited, trainees from APA-accredited doctoral programs have matched with us, as we utilize the nine APA Profession-Wide Competencies. Further, the Training Director is in the process of writing the self-study (the first step in the process of applying to APA for accreditation), and plans to submit it to APA in the winter/spring of 2022. Following review of the self-study by APA, a site visit will be scheduled. Once an internship program has its site visit scheduled (and assuming accreditation follows), trainees who complete the internship that year will be able to claim that the program was APA-accredited when they attended. The program does not have control over the timeline for review and accreditation. Please check with your department’s Director of Clinical Training to before you apply to ensure you are authorized to apply to our site!

The current program has undergone some very positive changes since 2018-2019 when we did not accept interns for one year due to staffing changes. We note this so that you can make sense of data that you see, and so that if you request to speak with previous interns, you understand that there are two cohorts of interns (from the 2019-20 and 2020-21 training years) who have completed the program in its current form.

*Weekly Activities: 20 hrs Direct Clinical Service [group therapy, individual therapy, Drop-in/crisis sessions (NO after-hours crisis on-call), occasional outreach, supervision of practicum trainees (depending on time of year and availability)]; 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 hr group sup/case conference, 1-1.5 hr sup of groups, 1 hr sup of sup); Other Activities include clinical documentation/case management and 1 hr staff meeting. 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 spend approximately 50% of their time per week providing direct clinical services.

Supervision of Practicum Trainees: The CAPS practicum program is technically a “pre-internship” 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 initially have interns observe individual supervision of practicum trainees by senior staff. 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. Our leadership structure includes the Director, Training Director, Groups Coordinator, and Outreach Coordinator. A full-time Program Coordinator provides administrative support services. We have also added a full-time Health Promotions Specialist to the team (and hence, changed our name from Counseling & Psychological Services to PAWS). Each clinician 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: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Couples Therapy: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
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 : EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)


Health Psychology:
Women's Health: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
HIV/AIDS: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Eating Disorders: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
Sexual Disorders: EXPOSURE (1% to 20%)
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: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
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: EXPERIENCE (21% to 30%)
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%)
Integrated health care - primary:
Integrated health care - specialty:

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
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
2016-2017 2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020 2020-2021
Working on dissertation/Student: 0 0 0 1 0
Postdoctoral Fellow: 1 2 0 0 1
Community Mental Health Center: 0 0 0 1 1
Health Maintenance Organization: 0 0 0 0 0
Veteran's Affairs Medical Center: 0 0 0 0 0
Military Medical Center: 0 0 0 0 0
Private General Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0
General Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0
Other Medical Center: 0 0 0 0 0
Private Psychiatric Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0
State/County/Other Public Hospital: 0 0 0 0 0
Correctional Facility: 0 0 0 0 0
School District/System: 0 0 0 0 0
University Counseling Center: 2 1 0 0 0
University Teaching Faculty: 0 0 0 0 0
2 or 4 year Undergraduate Teaching Position: 0 0 0 0 0
Medical School: 0 0 0 0 0
Academic Non-Teaching Position: 0 0 0 0 0
Research Position: 0 0 0 0 0
Independent Practice: 0 1 0 1 0
Other (e.g. consulting): 0 0 0 0 0
Not Currently Employed: 0 0 0 0 1
Changed to Other Career Field: 0 0 0 0 0
Unknown: 0 0 0 0 0