Multicultural Postdoctoral Residency 2013-2014 position

Description of Residency:

The Multicultural Postdoctoral Residency begins mid-August, 2013. The 1500 hour residency ends in late May, 2014. A postdoctoral resident will be expected to perform all the duties of a generalist clinician in a comprehensive multicultural university counseling center and will receive supervision according to the State of California Board of Psychology guidelines. Duties include but are not limited to: short-term individual, group, and couples counseling; possible supervision of practicum students; counseling assessment and referral; crisis intervention; consultation with students, faculty, staff, and parents; and developing campus outreach activities for a target population (e.g., International students, Men's issues, students who identify with a specific religious group, students with disabilities, LGBT Resource Center, Cross-cultural center).

The Multicultural postdoctoral residency also provides the opportunity to develop or continue an area of emphasis regarding cultural diversity. Applicants will need to indicate their area of interest for the specialization in their application cover letter.

Due to the unique professional development needs of Post-doctoral Residents, we encourage involvement in numerous forms of training and supervision of pre-doctoral interns and practicum counselors. Post-doctoral residents attend Training Committee meetings, have the opportunity to co-lead Training Seminar and Group Supervision, attend a Supervision of Supervision seminar, and provide secondary supervision (30 minutes per week) to a practicum counselor (during the second semester).

Multicultural Postdoctoral Residents will have an opportunity to work with a student population which is very diverse with regard to ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age, and religion. SJSU's latest enrollment census shows that ethnically we have a student population which is approximately 32% Asian American/Pacific Islander, 7% Foreign nationals, 21% Mexican American, 3% Other Hispanic, 27% European American, 4% African American. The mean age of students at SJSU is 26.

Agency Description and Setting:

Counseling Services is a department within the Division of Student Services at SJSU. Counseling Services is accredited by the International Association of Counseling Services (IACS) and is established as a comprehensive counseling center offering core clinical services, developmental and life skill interventions, counseling for achieving academic and career goals, consultation, and outreach to our diverse student population. Short-term counseling and psychotherapy are the primary means of direct service delivery and all services offered by Counseling Services are consistent with the educational mission of our metropolitan university.

San José State University is California's oldest institution of public higher learning and is a leader of the 23-campus California State University (CSU) system. SJSU enrolls approximately 30,000 students and is a metropolitan university located in downtown San José), the third largest city in California (Pop. 919,000). SJSU interacts with the surrounding community in a wide variety of civic, cultural, athletic and professional activities. The new Martin Luther King Jr. Library, a cooperative venture between SJSU and the City of San José, is the first joint-use academic/public library partnership of its kind in the United States. Beyond the local community, many recreational, cultural, and tourist attractions are within easy driving distance, including renowned sites such as the Monterey Peninsula, San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite, and Napa Valley.

Qualifications and Stipend:

Prior to the start of the placement, applicants must have completed a Doctoral degree in clinical or counseling psychology from an accredited educational institution and 1500 pre-doctoral internship hours. Preference is given to applicants who have experience in working with an ethnically, or otherwise diverse student population. Residents must specify an area of emphasis related to multiculturalism in their application cover letter.

The Multicultural Postdoctoral Residency for the 2013-2014 cohort will provide a stipend of $28,000 (for the 9-month placement) with excellent medical and dental benefits. Residents will also have staff privileges that include library use, access to a paid gym, discounts on public transportation, days off for holiday closures, and two personal holidays. Postdoctoral residents will rotate through a satellite office located on-campus. Note that Residents interested in parking on campus lots must purchase a parking permit (approximately $100 per semester; please see Parking Services website).

Multicultural Postdoctoral Residency Emphasis Area

A multicultural postdoctoral resident is expected to perform all the duties of a generalist clinician in a comprehensive multicultural university counseling center. Due to Counseling Services' commitment to the development of practitioners who promote social justice and consistently work within a multicultural lens, postdoctoral residents are provided supervision and training as they develop an area of focus related to a specific cultural group or topic related to multiculturalism and diversity. The multicultural postdoctoral resident is expected to engage in the following activities as part of increasing their competency regarding the selected area of focus. The primary supervisor will provide considerable support and guidance throughout these steps.

Residency Components

There are four major component areas of the Training Program. These areas are Cultural Diversity, Training (including Supervision), Direct Service, and Indirect Service.

Cultural Diversity:

This component is considered to be the most important of the training program for interns and is woven throughout all other components. Cultural diversity themes appear in individual and group sessions, supervision, in the outreach programming in which residents take part, in the training seminar presentations, and in clinical meetings. In addition, there are many seminar experiences focusing on self-awareness of cultural identities. All trainees at Counseling Services have the unique opportunity to participate in two experiences (fully described below): Social Justice and Outreach Seminar and Process Group in Diversity. Additionally, Counseling Services hosts an annual one-day Multicultural Training Day conference, which residents attend. Some residents deliver presentations at the conference.


Seminars Attended by Post-doctoral Residents

Diversity Process Group: The Process Group in Diversity is an opportunity for all levels of trainees to develop their awareness in diversity through discussion and experiential process. Our agency believes that self-awareness is vital to the development of the competent practitioner. Trainees may be invited to present on their own cultural identity. Staff may be invited into the seminar to model sharing about their own unique identity statuses. In order to ensure the emotional safety of trainees, information discussed in this seminar is entirely confidential and is not part of the evaluation process.

Social Justice and Outreach Seminar: The Social Justice and Outreach Seminar meets during the Fall semester. It is led by 1-2 licensed Psychologists and attended by all levels of trainees. Trainees will discuss the role of Psychologists in addressing social justice issues that may prevent or alleviate mental health struggles; explore the relationship between social justice and the development of outreach services and programs; and may help in developing specialization areas in which they focus their outreach and group efforts (e.g., LGBT student services, cross-cultural center, international students, substance abuse, eating disorders and body image, suicide prevention). Information regarding performance in this seminar may be provided to the individual supervisor for inclusion in the semester evaluation process.

Group on Groups & Workshops: The Group seminar is led by a licensed Psychologist and attended by psychology pre-doctoral interns and post-doctoral residents. The seminar focuses on assisting and supervising trainees as they develop, market, and co-lead therapy groups and psycho-educational workshops. Pre-doctoral interns are required to co-lead therapy groups with a staff member or a Multicultural Post-doctoral Resident. Information regarding performance in this seminar, as well as performance when leading groups and workshops, may be provided to the individual supervisor for inclusion in the semester evaluation process.

Supervision of Supervision Seminar: The Supervision of Supervision Seminar is facilitated by a licensed Psychologist and attended by only postdoctoral residents. The opportunity to provide supervision to a practicum counselor is dependent on the number of practicum interns available, the requirements set forth by the practicum's training program, and with approval from the resident's primary supervisor and Training Committee. Post-doctoral residents may also obtain supervision experience by co-facilitating outreach activities, workshops, and groups with pre-doctoral interns and practicum trainees.

Seminars Co-Facilitated by Post-doctoral Residents:

Co-Faciltitating the Didactic Training Seminar: The Training Seminar meets for one hour weekly and is co-led by one licensed Psychologist and one Multicultural Post-doctoral Resident. Practicum counselors and pre-doctoral psychology interns attend the seminar. During the weekly Training Seminar, various clinical topics are presented and discussed by faculty at Counseling Services. Common training topics include: intervention skills for brief therapy models, domestic violence, cultural-double-bind, working with specific cultural populations (e.g., ethnic groups, international students, sexual identity, gender identity), boundaries/multiple relationships and ethical issues, suicide and violence assessment, professional development (e.g., applying for next training positions, preparation for licensure in psychology, job interviews), eating disorders, substance abuse, and empirically-supported treatments for various presenting concerns and client populations. The exact content of the trainings varies based on the needs of the training cohort and expertise of the Multicultural Post-doctoral Resident who co-facilitates the seminar.

Group Supervision: Group supervision is attended by pre-doctoral interns. Group supervision is led by a licensed Psychologist and a post-doctoral resident. Group supervision provides a forum for discussing clinical work and improving clinical skills. Group supervision also provides the format for presenting formal case presentations (see “Other Training Opportunities”). The Counseling Services Psychiatrist frequently visits this meeting to provide opportunities for further psychiatric consultation.

Each post-doctoral resident will have the opportunity to co-lead one semester of each of the above experiences.

Supervision/Case Consultation:

  • Individual (1:1) Supervision (all trainees): Counseling Services meets or exceeds the supervision requirement in the Board of Psychology's Supervised Professional Experience (SPE) regulation. Residents will be provided with supervision for at least 10% of the total time worked each week. Post-doctoral residents will have at least one hour per week of individual face-to-face supervision for the training year.

Supervisor assignments for the Fall semester are made by the Training Committee. All trainees are required to change supervisors during the second semester to obtain a breadth of orientations, techniques, and styles. For the second semester, trainees' preferences for supervisors are solicited and considered in assignments made by the Training Committee. Every effort is made to match requests.

Clinical Consultation Meeting: This weekly meeting is for all faculty counselors, educational counselors, psychiatrists, and trainees. It is an opportunity to present cases to one another and engage in consultation. The emphasis in the meeting is on viewing our work as a team effort to provide the best possible service to students.

Audio/Video Recording:

Post-doctoral residents are encouraged to consult with their supervisors to determine whether to video record sessions. Recording sessions is optional.

Direct Service:

Direct service hours are provided through individual, couple, and group counseling sessions; outreach presentations; assessment/crises coverage, and providing supervision. Post-doctoral residents are expected to deliver 24 hours of direct service per week.Individual/Couple Psychotherapy: Trainees are expected to accrue the majority of the direct service hours through work with individual clients. The size of the caseload varies considerably depending on whether clients are seen weekly or less often. Clinical load may also vary during slower times of the year, such as winter break and the beginning of fall semester, and higher during peak times such as midterms and finals.

Groups: Trainees may be involved in providing group therapy. Formation of groups will be discussed in orientation, individual supervision, and the Group on Group Seminar. Most groups are supervised by the leader of the Group on Group Seminar or the licensed clinician co-leading the group.

Outreach, Workshops, and Consultation: Trainees are encouraged to be involved in various Counseling Services programming. Trainees are encouraged to present psycho-educational workshops as part of the “Spartan Success Series” that is managed by Educational Counselors at Counseling Services. Topics may include: stress management, internet addiction, time management, cross-cultural communication skills. Trainees may also be part of programs presented during re-occurring campus events such as Eating Disorders Awareness Week, Transgender Awareness Week, The Tunnel of Oppression, or African American History month. Trainees may establish consultation relationships with any number of student organizations or offices, including: Women's Resource Center, MOSAIC Cross-Cultural Center, Athletics Department, Residence Life, Disability Resource Center, The Greek System, Mental Health Ambassadors (student group de-stigmatizing mental health services), Thousand Stars (suicide prevention programming), and Peers In Pride (LGBTQ mentoring program) or the larger LGBTQ Resource Center. Time spent on these projects varies widely. Trainees are welcome to suggest programs based on their interest areas. 

Assessment/Crisis Coverage: Assessment/crisis coverage requires a 4.5 hour assigned shift between the hours of 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM. San José State University students who wish to receive personal counseling complete computerized paperwork and then immediately meet with the assessment/crisis counselor who is on duty. These sessions generally lasts 15 - 20 minutes and are designed to “assess” the student's reason for wanting personal counseling and to clarify risk factors. After the assessment, if determined to be appropriate for our services, the student is generally placed on the waitlist to be assigned to an appropriate counselor. Each semester, a variety of crisis cases demand our attention. These include calls from staff in the residence halls, requests from faculty or staff to consult about troubled students, or walk-in clients who seem to be in crisis. In addition to the assigned shift, from time to time all counselors may be called on to assist with crisis situations.

Trainees are not responsible for after-hour emergency coverage. All after-hours emergency coverage is managed by licensed clinicians on staff.

Indirect Service:

Peer Support Meetings: Each level of trainee group is encouraged to develop a weekly meeting to support each other and process their unique developmental experiences. Meetings may focus on supporting each other through transitions, discussing issues that come up around working in Counseling Services, and processing the dynamics within the cohort. This experience is optional, but highly encouraged, for post-doctoral residents.

Case Management: Trainees schedule time into their weekly schedules to complete their case records, review session recordings, and attend to other administrative tasks. In addition, certain blocks of free time for this will present themselves from time to time (e.g., cancellations, no-shows).

Other Consultation, Club, or Committee Work: In the past, trainees have become involved with other organizations that correspond to their own interests. These have included the Career Services; Health Services; MOSAIC Cross-cultural Center; Cesar Chavez Community Action Center; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered Resource Center; Women's Resource Center; Athletic Department, etc.

Attendance at Division or Departmental Meetings and Functions: As part of Counseling Services, trainees attend various meetings throughout the year that involve the staff and faculty, such as Student Services meetings and functions. Counseling Services also provides routine trainings 2-16 hours per semester to all staff, including trainees. 

Training Committee: Post-doctoral residents participate as active members of the training committee. The committee meets for 1.5 hours per week to make decisions about training policies, provide supervisory support, complete the selection process for future trainees, and review progress in various training components.

Other Training Opportunities:

Case Presentations/Mock Job Interviews: Post-doctoral residents, due to their unique developmental needs, are required to complete two forms of professional development during the training year. The resident may choose between providing: 1.) two case presentations or 2.) one case presentation and one mock job interview. Presentations will be provided to the faculty counselors in a Training Committee meeting. 


Postdocs complete the following 5 activities:

1.) Regularly attend the Social Justice and Outreach Seminar

2.) Regularly attend the Process Group in Diversity

3.) Develop or maintain a relationship (with the support of Faculty) with at least one student group or office on campus. In the Social Justice and Outreach Seminar, propose an idea (e.g., interventions, programming) that may affect systemic (macro level) change for the selected population.

4.) Serve as a consultant to practicum counselors and pre-doctoral interns regarding your area of focus (this includes informal consultation throughout the year and may, optionally, include providing a 1 hour presentation in Training Seminar).

5.) Actively participate in planning and implementation of the annual conference hosted by the Training Committee - Multicultural Training Day (Fall semester).

Additionally, postdocs choose 1 of the following 2 activities:

6.) Co-lead a series of workshops or a therapy/support group related to the area of focus or addressing a need of the identified population. You may work with a pre-existing workshop or therapy group or may develop a new workshop or therapy group.

7.) Present or co-present one Grand Rounds presentation on a topic related to the area of focus. Grand Rounds presentations are informal, 1.5 hour, presentations delivered to Counseling Services staff and trainees.

Training Program Manual

Please carefully review our current Training Program Manual (pdf) prior to applying. Distribution of this material without the written permission from San José State University Counseling Services; One Washington Square, ADM 201; San Jose CA 95192-0035, is strictly prohibited.

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Application Procedure:

***Review of applications will begin immediately until filled. ***  Phone interviews will be offered to select applicants. 

Please mail the following:

  1. a letter of interest which includes a clear statement of your area of interest for the multicultural specialization (please see Training Manual for more specifics on the requirements of the Multicultural Post-doctoral Residency);
  2. a current curriculum vita that reflects all clinical experiences;
  3. three recent (less than 3 years old) original letters of recommendation, including at least two letters from licensed clinical supervisors; and
  4. official transcripts of terminal degree (copies are acceptable, but originals will be needed if an offer is made).

All letters (i.e., cover letter and letters of recommendation) need to be dated and have original signatures. Electronic signatures are not accepted by Human Resources. Please check these materials before submitting.


Application material and questions should be forwarded to:

Stephen Chen, Psy.D., Training Coordinator 
Counseling Services 
San José State University 
One Washington Square 
Administration Building, Room 201
San José, California 95192-0035 

PHONE: (408) 924-5910 
FAX: (408) 924-5933 

SJSU does not discriminate on the basis of accent, age, ancestry, citizenship status, color, creed, disability, ethnicity, gender, marital status, medical condition, national origin, race, religion or lack thereof, sex, sexual orientation, transgender, and veteran's status. This policy applies to all SJSU student, faculty, and staff programs and activities. Questions regarding this policy should be directed to the Office of Equal Opportunity, One Washington Square, BB Building, San José, CA 95192-0003, (408) 924-1115. SJSU is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Reasonable accommodations are made for applicants with disabilities