Department : Mental Health Service

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Member Site Information
APPIC Member Number: 2383
Program Type: Internship
Membership Type: Full Membership
Site: VA Health Care System St. Cloud
Department: Mental Health Service
Address: 4801 Veterans Drive
St. Cloud, Minnesota 56303
Country: United States
Metro Area: Not Applicable
Not Applicable
Distance from Major City: 65 miles northwest of Minneapolis, MN
Phone: 320-252-1670x7298
Web Address:
Brochure Website's Address:
Primary Agency Type: Veterans Affairs Medical Center
Additional Agency Types:
Member of APPIC since:
APA Accreditation Accredited
CPA Accreditation Not Accredited
Internship Staff/Faculty Information
Training Director: Stephany Himrich
Chief Psychologist: Janine Paxson
Number of Full-Time Licensed Doctoral Psychologists on Staff/Faculty 22
Number of Part-Time Licensed Doctoral Psychologists on Staff/Faculty 0
Position Information
Start Date: 07/15/2024
Number of Full Time Slots Expected Next Class: 3
Number of Part Time Slots Expected Next Class: 0
Full Time Annual Stipend for Next Class: 36768
Part Time Annual Stipend for Next Class: 0
Fringe Benefits: Dissertation Release Time, Health Insurance, Sick Leave, Vacation
Other Fringe Benefits (not indicated above): Interns are paid for eleven Federal holidays. They accrue 4 hours of sick leave and 4 hours of annual leave for each full two week pay period as an intern, for a total of between 96 and 104 hours of each during the year.
Brief description of the typical work day for an intern at this training site Typical work day is from 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM Monday through Friday.
Does this site have practicum psychology students on site? No
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: 11/15/2023 11:59 PM EST
Interviews at this site are:
A Virtual Interview is: Required
Interview notification date: 12/01/2023
Tentative interview date: 1/8/24; 1/12/24; & 1/17/24
Interview process description:

St. Cloud VA HCS will be conducting virtual interviews for the upcoming year.  Virtual interviews will be conducted on 1/8/2024 (Monday), 1/12/2024 (Friday), and 1/17/2024 (Wednesday). Some flexibility in regard to interviews may be allowed to accommodate the applicant for extenuating circumstances.   The Virtual interview days will include a general overview of the program, individual interviews, a meeting with current interns, and opportunities to meet with potential supervisors to discuss specific details regarding each rotation.  Interns will be invited via telephone regarding the interview date.  Interns will also receive a follow-up e-mail from the Co-Directors of Training to provide further details and instructions pertaining to the interview. NOTE: Much like the vaccine for influenza, all HPTs training in a VA facility must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or have an exemption filed (medical or religious) with the DEO.


How to obtain application info: Visit Website
Preferred method of contacting the program: Email the Program
We have matched with interns from these programs: Alliant International University/California School of Professional Psychology-San Diego; Carlow University; Chaminade University/Hawai'i School of Professional Psychology-Argosy; Chicago School of Professional Psychology-Chicago Campus; Fielding Graduate University; Loma Linda University; Minnesota School of Professional Psychology-Twin Cities; Palo Alto University; St. Mary's University of Minnesota; Suffolk University; University of North Dakota; University of St. Thomas; University of Montana, George Fox University, University of Tennessee/Knoxville, University of Montana
Internship Applicant Requirements
US Citizenship Required: Yes
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): 250
Minimum Number of AAPI Assessment Hours (if applicable): 50
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
PCSAS-Accredited Accepted
Non-Accredited Not Accepted
Ph.D Degree Accepted
Psy.D. Degree Accepted
Ed.D. Degree Not 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: See brochure for more information.
Program Description

St. Cloud VA Health Care System (HCS) provides medical care to Veterans from Minnesota, northern Iowa, northwestern Wisconsin, and eastern North and South Dakota.  The Health Care System delivers care to more than 39,500 unique patients annually in the Upper Midwest region. Sixty percent of our total Veteran workload is over the age of 66. Our facility also has three Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs) located in Alexandria, Brainerd, and Montevideo, Minnesota.  Over 11,500 Veterans are enrolled for care in the three CBOCs.  Our local facility and surrounding Community-Based Outpatient Clinics serve a large percentage of rural Veterans.  Approximately 76% of our enrollees reside in rural areas.

The Psychology Internship Program at St. Cloud VA Health Care System is Fully Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of American Psychological Association (APA).  Questions related to the program's accreditation status should be addressed to: APA, Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, 750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242; (202) 336-5979; e-mail:; Web:  

Applicants will be notified no later than December 1st regarding invitations for interviews. All interviews will be conducted virtually or by telephone this year.


Services include programs such as: the Outpatient Mental Health Clinic, Primary Care Mental Health Integration (PCMHI), Psychological Assessment, Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program (RRTP), Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Center (PRRC), Acute Psychiatric Inpatient Unit, Outpatient Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Treatment Program, Mental Health Intensive Case Management (MHICM), Homeless Programming, and Vocational Rehabilitation services.  Additional mental health services can be found in the Primary and Specialty Medicine and Extended Care Services Lines.  The psychology staff work closely with Patient Aligned Care Teams (PACT) and within Behavioral Health Interdisciplinary Program (BHIP) teams in the facility. The psychology service staff includes about 30 psychology positions when fully staffed, with clinicians from diverse training backgrounds as well as psychometrists. 

The primary objective of the Psychology Internship Training Program is to train doctoral level psychology students to function as independent and ethically-minded entry-level professionals who are proficient in the core competencies of applied health service psychology. It is designed to facilitate the integration and consolidation of the prerequisite academic and experiential learning through a full year of supervised training. The Psychology Internship Training Program’s philosophy is based on the scientist-practitioner model, with an emphasis on training in the provision of mental health services in a medical setting.  Our training approach emphasizes implementation and promotion of empirically-based treatment modalities and protocols while fostering the psychological flexibility, problem-solving attitudes, and proficiency in individual/cultural differences and diversity needed to apply empirically grounded treatment approaches. We encourage the review of empirical literature to ground and enhance the intern’s professional skills alongside the professional experience of learning from mentors through ongoing supervision and consultation.  As scientist-practitioners, we foster an appreciation for the scientific underpinnings of psychology and ethically-based professional decision-making. 

The Psychology Internship Training Program is focused on providing generalist training in health service psychology in order to ensure the VA has a constant source of well-trained and qualified psychologists.  Our program is designed to be grounded in the understanding that a psychologist must be able to demonstrate core foundational and functional competencies prior to specialization.  Thus, interns will have a set of shared core experiences, didactics, and seminars that will allow cohesive cohort development, while also providing a range of optional rotations to suit varied training needs and professional aspirations.  Interns take an active role in establishing training goals with each supervisor and rotation experience, as well as overarching goals for the training year.  



Internship Training Opportunities


Adults: Yes
Older Adults: Yes
Inpatients: Yes
Outpatients: Yes
Gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender: Yes
Ethnic minorities: Yes
International Students:
Rural: Yes
Low income: Yes
Homelessness: Yes
Other: Veterans

Treatment Modalities

Assessment: Emphasis (31% to 49%)
Individual Therapy: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Couples Therapy: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Family Therapy:
Group Therapy: Emphasis (31% to 49%)
Community Intervention:
Consultation/Liaison: Experience (21% to 30%)
Crisis Intervention: Experience (21% to 30%)
Brief Psychotherapy: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Long-term Psychotherapy: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Cognitive Rehabilitation:
Primary Care: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Evidenced Based Practice: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Evidence Based Research: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Supervision of Practicum students :
Other: Leadership and Mental Health Administration


Health Psychology: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Women's Health: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Eating Disorders:
Sexual Disorders: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Sports Psychology:
Rehabilitation Psychology: Experience (21% to 30%)
Physical Disabilities:
Learning Disabilities:
Developmental Disabilities:
Assessment: Emphasis (31% to 49%)
Neuropsychology-Adult: 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: Experience (21% to 30%)
Substance Use Disorders: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Sexual Offenders:
Geropsychology: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Vocational/Career Development:
Multicultural Therapy: Experience (21% to 30%)
Feminist Therapy: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Empirically-Supported Treatments: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Public Policy/Advocacy:
Program Development/Evaluation: Experience (21% to 30%)
Research: Exposure (1% to 20%)
Administration: Experience (21% to 30%)
Integrated health care - primary: Major Area of Study (50% or Greater)
Integrated health care - specialty:

Mental Health Residential Rehabilitation and Recovery Treatment Program (MH RRTP) for Veterans with PTSD and/or dual diagnosis.

A new MH Administration and Leadership Rotation experience is offered, with onset in 2023. Additionally, a General Psychological Assessment rotation and stand-alone Acute Psychiatric Inpatient Unit rotation will be offered, with onset in 2024. 





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 2023-2024
Number of Completed Applications: 19 34 45 33 49 41 42
Number of applicants invited for interviews: 16 29 37 32 35 33 35
Total number of interns: 3 3 3 3 3 3 3
Total number of interns from APA/CPA accredited programs: 3 3 3 3 3 3 3
Total number of interns from Ph.D. programs: 1 0 2 1 0 3 1
Total number of interns from Psy.D. programs: 2 3 1 2 3 0 2
Total number of interns from Ed.D. programs: 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Number of interns that come from a Clinical Psychology program 1 1 3 2 0 3 2
Number of interns that come from a Counseling Psychology program 2 2 0 1 3 0 1
Number of interns that come from a School Psychology program 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Range of integrated assessment reports: lowest number of reports written 2 15 22 6 7 1 10
Range of integrated assessment reports: highest number of reports written 108 39 55 13 53 63 32
Summary of Post Internship Employment Settings of Each Internship Class (1st Placement)
Academic teaching:
Community mental health center: 0
Consortium: 0
University Counseling Center: 0
Hospital/Medical Center: 1
Veterans Affairs Health Care System: 0
Psychiatric facility: 0
Correctional facility: 0
Health Maintenance Organization: 0
School district/system: 0
Independent practice setting: 2
Other (Academic Psychology Department): 0