Psychology & Counseling Internship Practicum Guide

In this book I discuss my experience in practice as well as an educator, in Internship/Practicum experiences, and measure these up against Baird’s writing in his Baird’s. Here, I demonstrate that I have re-familiarized myself with the particular needs of the population I have worked with for years in my practice and include, per the contract, ethical and legal issues to consider with this population.  I accomplished this through hands on, face-to-face experience with the clients I work with in tandem with the text. 

Although the journal originally meant to be included with this publication, is reduced to documentation at the end primarily because of the challenges that I was presented with by the practicum supervisor and the unfortunate fact that I did not read Mr. Baird’s book prior to the ensuing of the practicum. 

As a result, this work is by and large a very thorough combination of this reader’s response to my designated literature in the course finalized with my documentation and thinking about how the short practicum related to my literature-learning and vice-versa.  In addition, because of the nature of my experience in the practicum, I have delved into and shared with the reader how it also relates to the internships I have experienced in the past as well as how it relates to all of my experience as an intern, therapist and now as a director of clinical services at New Paths, Inc. in Flint, MI as well as Michigan’s first sobering facility—Sober House—under the auspices of the Genesee County Community Mental Health in Flint, MI, Hurley Medical Center and McClaren hospital.

I have studied every page of Baird’s book and wish that I had read it years ago but, best laid plans of mice and people not always going as planned, I have made the best possible decision to absorb its contents and vow to use it from now on.

It allowed me to study and compare with my experience as well as plan better the practicum I am now beginning at Turning Point Recovery Center in Otter Lake, MI.  It exposed me perfectly to Baird’s wonderful advice, based on his decades of experience and research, on preparing to enter a practicum, the terminology, consulting with my mentor/instructor, actually finding a placement, made me more aware of my rights and requirements, as well as gave me good utilization of supervision, working with peers, clients, ethical issues, working with groups, 1:1 sessions, technology, malpractice and liability concerns and literally everything one needs to add to the richness that every practicum offers and deserves from all participants. 

Like the long, drawn out string of waiting periods that the supervisor in the facility that I chose, put me through, contrary to Baird’s claims, I have not considered this particular internship to be among the most influential experiences of my career.  Thank goodness it’s not my first internship experience. Although on the positive side, it did give me a broader perspective of how I could have handled it differently and will in the future.  One added advantage of experiencing this practicum experience, the duties in my position and my learning during the same period, I study or sit in a seminar and I can relate so much more than I would, had I not had the experience, and vice versa.  That stated, during practice or practicum, the experience comes a little more alive because of the education I have made myself available to through this study.

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