The post-doctoral program in psychology is a forty hours per week program that runs for 24 months. In addition to clinical work, all fellows will participate in the following:
- 3 hours individual supervision
- 1.5 hours clinical team meeting
- 3.0 hours Core Seminar, led by Bessel van der Kolk, M.D. and Trauma Center faculty
- 1+ hour specialty project meeting(s) (dependent on current grant funding)
- 1 hour research meeting (if relevant)
- 1.5 hour Lecture Series
- Professional Development seminar
Note: Fellows may participate in additional seminars or meetings, dependent on specialty track, availability of advanced seminars, and/or participation in grant-funded projects.
The Core Curriculum
Core Seminar - Held Monday mornings from 9:30-12:30, this weekly seminar provides fellows with a theoretical framework for trauma treatment, as well as a rich case study population drawn from the experiences of a diverse practitioner pool. Faculty and guest lecturers are invited to speak on a wide range of theoretical approaches and treatment options. This seminar is led by Bessel van der Kolk, M.D., Margaret Blaustein, Ph.D., and Jana Pressley, Psy.D., and includes presentations by many of the Trauma Center faculty.
Monthly Lecture Series - As Medical Director, Dr. van der Kolk either speaks personally on his research or trauma theory, or invites colleagues in the trauma field do the same. These lectures occur once a month on Thursday afternoons between 12:00-1:30 and draw a wide audience from the Boston psychological community.
Additional seminars are often offered through The Trauma Center's Training Institute, and fellows are encouraged to participate in advanced trainings and consultation opportunities throughout the year. In year 2 of the Fellowship, the Core Seminar is replaced by advanced clinical seminars and consultation groups.
Each fellow will be assigned a minimum of two clinical supervisors and one “track” supervisor (research or clinical specialty), one of whom will be designated a primary supervisor. Additionally, each fellow will meet individually on a quarterly basis with the Director of Training and also periodically in a group format with other fellows.
Consultation - Opportunities for consultation on dissociative disorders, EMDR, childhood trauma, and other areas are also available.
These full-time positions are funded against a prorated base salary of $45,000 FTE in the first year, with full-time benefits. Fellows will be salaried for 24 or more hours per week as specified below. The remaining time will be funded via fee-for service clinical assignments, including therapy and evaluation sessions; fellows may anticipate earning at least $12,000 FFS income during their first year, with increased fees typical during the second year. Fellows receive a salary increase in the second year of the position, and there may be opportunity for increased salaried hours during year two.
Track #1 Description – Project Coordination and Development, Attachment, Self-Regulation, and Competency (ARC) Treatment
The fellow in this track will be funded 24 hours per week in addition to fee-for-service clinical revenue. Twenty hours are funded to support the ongoing development, evaluation, and refinement of the Attachment, Self-Regulation and Competency (ARC) treatment framework. Primary tasks may include project coordination; development of treatment-related products; support for program evaluation; manuscript preparation; delivery of training and technical assistance; and other relevant activities. Occasional travel to support framework implementation and sustainability efforts may be required. In addition, the fellow will serve as an active participant in the center’s grant-writing team (four hours / week). Applicants for this position should have exceptional writing and organizational skills, and will be expected to collaborate in producing a minimum of two manuscripts per year for peer-review publication; the fellow will have an opportunity for first-author publication in year two following successful completion of year one expectations. Applicants should also demonstrate a record of interest in child / family clinical intervention. Experience working as a research assistant, project coordinator or equivalent, and familiarity with statistical analysis and database organization are desirable.
The remainder of the fellow's time will involve clinical assessment and treatment reimbursed as fee-for-service, in addition to the array of training experiences described above.
Track #2 Description – Advanced Mind-Body Fellow & Clinical Researcher
This advanced fellowship is geared toward research-minded, early career Clinical Psychologists who possess solid foundational knowledge in the complexity of adaptation to trauma and who wish to focus their careers on advancing empirical understanding of the mechanisms of complex trauma impact and the development and testing of innovative, mind-body intervention. The fellow in this track will receive 32 hours salary per week in addition to fee-for-service clinical revenue. The central goal of this fellowship position will be to examine the effectiveness of alternative treatments such yoga, neurofeedback, and sensory integration intervention, with a focus on working with dissociative states. by utilizing single-case and analog studies to establish feasibility, refine procedures, and implement interventions in settings for which and with populations for whom these innovative methodologies have not been used previously. Primary tasks will include design, implementation, analysis, manuscript development, conference presentation and journal submission of 3 or more pilot projects over the 2-year fellowship period. Applicants should come in with a clearly defined personal research agenda that is aligned with the complex trauma mission and objectives of the Trauma Center and that is outlined in their detailed fellowship cover letter. Applicants must include at least one letter of recommendation from a research mentor with expertise in the trauma field who can testify to their aptitude, readiness and relevant experience to assume this form of advanced fellowship. These pilot projects will inform and potentially be elaborated upon in their work as member of the Trauma Center’s grant writing team. Occasional travel to support implementation and sustainability efforts may be required. In addition, the fellow will become an active participant in the center’s grant-writing team (four hours / week).
The remainder of the fellow's time will involve clinical assessment and treatment in the outpatient clinic of the Trauma Center at JRI, active participation and evolving leadership as a member of the Trauma Center’s grant writing team, and the array of training experiences described above. Candidates at any point within the first 5 years following defense of their doctoral theses are encouraged to apply.
Track #3 Description – Project REACH
The fellow in this track will be funded 24 hours / week, in addition to fee-for-service clinical revenue. This fellow will spend 2.5 days (20 hours) per week working in an anti-human trafficking program, Project REACH. Project REACH is the only program of its kind in the country, providing mobile crisis mental health services to trafficking survivors and offering training and consultation to providers throughout the United States. Responsibilities include conducting psychological evaluations of survivors of human trafficking and writing reports; providing brief individual and group crisis counseling to human trafficking survivors; offering consultation to federal law enforcement, local law enforcement, social service providers, mental health providers, and attorneys about human trafficking cases; coordinating a national network of mental health providers engaged in anti-trafficking work; conducting outreach about human trafficking; and offering in-person and web-based trainings and workshops on human trafficking. Opportunities will also be available for development of new interventions and writing articles about human trafficking.
In addition, the fellow will be an active member of the Trauma Center grant-writing and research team, with four hours of funding allotted to this task. The remainder of the fellow's time (2 days/week) will involve clinical assessment and treatment in the outpatient clinic of the Trauma Center at JRI, as well as the array of training experiences described above. Travel is required for this position, and there is a preference for bilingual and/or bicultural applicants. Applicants with interest and/or experience in cross-cultural work are encouraged to apply.
Track #4 Description – Trauma Center at JRI / van der Kolk Center
The fellow in this track will be funded 24 hours / week in addition to fee-for-service clinical revenue. This fellow will spend 2 days (20 hours) per week working in a partner residential program administered by the Justice Resource Institute (van der Kolk Center at Glenhaven Academy), with emphasis on development and sustainability of trauma-informed practices through provision of clinical care, consultation, and training in a residential treatment setting for adolescents with a history of exposure to complex traumatic stress. In this setting, the fellow will function as part of a multi-disciplinary team, and will have additional opportunities for trauma-informed psychological evaluation, intensive clinical treatment, group treatment, and cross-disciplinary collaboration. The applicant for this position need not have prior experience working in residential settings; however, clinical experience with adolescents is desirable.
In addition, this fellow will be an active member of the Trauma Center grant-writing and research team, with four hours of funding allotted to this task. The remainder of the fellow's time (2 days/week) will involve clinical assessment and treatment in the outpatient clinic of the Trauma Center at JRI, as well as the array of training experiences described above.
Grant Writing Responsibilities:
Fellows who are members of the Trauma Center’s grant writing team will be actively involved in development and submission of six or more federal grants per year, divided about equally between clinical research and service development, evaluation and training grants. Fellows will assume increased responsibility in construction of these grants over time, holding the lead role in grant composition and submission for at least one grant during Y01 of the fellowship, and for 2 or more grants in Y02. While fellows are funded 4 hours per week as members of the grant writing team in Y01 (with the potential to increase hours in Y02 based on aptitude, interest and the availability of funding), the actual weekly work volume fluctuates considerably based upon grant cycles and is more accurately reflected as approximately 200 hours per year.
To learn how to apply:
A Postdoctoral Fellowship position is also available at the MetroWest Behavioral Health Center (MBHC) in Acton, MA. For MBHC positions, please click here.