Carnegie Mellon University

Postdoctoral Psychology Fellowship

The Setting: Carnegie Mellon University

Counseling and Psychological Services (CaPS), a unit within Carnegie Mellon Student Affairs, offers significant support for students beyond that of traditional counseling center. Collaborating with the greater university community affords a trainee exposure to the multidisciplinary aspects of working in a university counseling center. CaPS provides comprehensive psychological services to the campus community; both graduate and undergraduate students receive services through CaPS. While direct clinical service is a significant focus of CaPS, the center also provides other services to the university community including consultation and outreach programming.

Post Doctoral Fellowship Training Position

Carnegie Mellon University Counseling and Psychological Services (CaPS) is accepting applications for a Postdoctoral Fellowship position in psychology. The Postdoctoral Fellowship Program provides Fellows with opportunities for advanced training and supervision in brief therapy, group counseling, outreach, consultation, and crisis intervention. The position is a full-time, one calendar year postdoctoral fellowship. Postdoctoral fellows will dedicate 50% of their time to direct clinical services, including triage/crisis intervention, consultation, individual psychotherapy, group counseling, and supervision. In addition, Fellows will participate in CaPS outreach program. Postdoctoral fellows receive two hours of weekly individual supervision, in addition to supervision for group counseling, supervision of supervision, and supervisory support for outreach activities.

Training activities may include the following: didactic seminars, case conference, clinical discussion group, and Advanced Topical Seminars including, the Decolonizing Critical Consciousness seminar, and the Trauma seminar. 

Postdoctoral fellows may have the opportunity to engage in specialized projects based on availability and the fellow’s interests. Examples of specialized project include: designing outreach programming for specific population (e.g., LGBTQI+, BIPOC community, etc.), social justice projects, integrated health project, etc.

The fellow can expect ongoing collaboration with an interdisciplinary staff at CaPS throughout the training year.


A completed doctoral degree in clinical or counseling psychology from an accredited graduate program is required. Applicants must be committed to upholding social justice values in accordance to APA standards, and demonstrate strong interest and/or experience with college mental health, crisis intervention, brief therapy, consultation, and working with a diverse student populations.

Application Procedures for Postdoctoral Fellowship

To apply, the following information must be provided

  • A cover letter indicating your interests and goals for the Postdoctoral Fellowship year and how CMU CaPS may help you achieve those goals.
  • A current vitae reflecting all practicum work, internship, and clinical training.
  • Three letters of reference (at least 2 from clinical supervisors familiar with your clinical work).

Please submit all information via email by January, 4th 2021 to Dr. Mengchun Chiang, Program Director of the CaPS Doctoral Internship in Health Service Psychology at  If you have any additional questions you can direct these to Dr. Chiang as well.

Our Training Philosophy

The fellowship year is viewed as an opportunity to continue to expand and hone one’s psychotherapeutic skills and to reflect upon professional development. We strive to develop well-rounded generalist practitioners who will possess the skills necessary to be competent in the field as an entry-level psychologist. To this end our training model emphasizes:

  1. attending to and supporting the fellow’s developmental needs,
  2. developing the fellow’s professional and personal identity and self-awareness, and 
  3. integrating practice and clinical theory.

Our training program is developmental in nature and as such is sensitive to the individual needs of trainees with varying levels of knowledge and expertise. Training experiences are graduated throughout the year and based upon the trainee’s readiness as gauged by their supervisor, Training Coordinator, Assistant Training Coordinator, and Director. Following a developmental framework a trainee can expect training to include both vicarious and experiential learning. Didactic experiences offer the opportunity to more deeply integrate theory and practice. In addition, attendance at case conference and the development of mentoring relationships with senior staff allow for observational learning. Finally, trainees will gain experiential learning via the provision of psychotherapy, as well as participation in outreach programming, consultation with the campus community, and participation in psychiatric rounds.

Our Treatment Philosophy

At CaPS we practice brief psychotherapy utilizing depth-oriented theories of human experience and treatment, along with other ways of understanding. In an effort to engage students with differing levels of need we flexibly employ a variety of interventions. Our goal is to provide students with an opportunity for psychological growth in addition to meeting their more immediate needs. The core values of our therapeutic work include: emphasis on the therapeutic relationship; exploration of dynamics and styles of relating to self and others; and the identification of patterns in behaviors, relationships, thoughts and feelings.

Clinical Activities

Individual Counseling and Psychotherapy

The opportunity to provide short and long-term counseling/psychotherapy under intensive supervision is a unique feature of the training program. The nature of counseling center work ebbs and flows, but interns can expect, on average, to carry 17–20 ongoing clients per week during the academic year. Two hours of individual supervision will be provided each week.

Group Counseling

CaPS group counseling program continues to grow with regard to the number of groups offered. We are building a robust workshop and skills-based program to meet the needs of the campus community as well. Some examples of current and past groups include: Graduate Interpersonal Therapy group, Women’s Support group, and an LGBTQ Support group. Interested Fellows will have the opportunity to meet with our group coordinator to determine individual group interest and needs of the counseling center at the time. If there is a match, fellows will have the opportunity to co-lead a group or workshop with a senior staff member.

Intake Assessment

Each intern will perform individual intake assessments and clinical consults as part of their clinical training. Fellows will continue to hone their assessment skills and clinical decision-making abilities through this process. Intake assessment training will occur during the orientation process as well as throughout the year during individual supervision. 

Triage/Walk-in Assessment

Starting in September, fellows will have the opportunity to work directly with our Triage Team.  Fellows will share the responsibility of providing emergency services/walk-in services to students in crisis four hours a week. Supervision of this experience will be provided by the triage clinicians and Director.

Consultation and Outreach

Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in an outreach programming. The fellow will be expected to provide outreach programming on a rotating basis with senior staff as it is requested by the university community. Fellows may also have the opportunity to participate in the developing of outreach programming, be exposed to how coordination of requests happen, and consult on outreach requests with the community depending on interest and community need.

CaPS has a psychiatrist on staff that provides medication management, consultation, and psychiatric services to students. Psychiatric rounds are held every Thursday morning and provide a space to consult with the psychiatrists regarding on-going clinical cases. Fellows will participate in weekly psychiatric rounds with their primary supervisors.

Supervision and Training

Individual Supervision

Each fellow receives two hours of individual psychotherapy supervision per week with a primary supervisor. Supervision is psychodynamic in orientation. Given our treatment philosophy, the pre- doctoral intern can expect supervision to be depth oriented, dynamic, and relational. Supervision is a place for the fellow to examine the therapist-client relationship and engage in personal reflection. 

Training Seminars

As part of the comprehensive training program at CaPS, the entire training cohort participates in a weekly training seminar for the fall semester; these seminars are led by senior staff. This hour long seminar provides didactic training with a focus on deepening the interns understanding of psychodynamic theory and practice. From mid-May until the beginning of August fellows will experience weekly one hour training seminars with senior staff.

Case Conference

Starting with the spring semester, a weekly psychodynamically-oriented case conference is offered to members of the senior staff. Focus is on technique as well as viewing treatment from a developmental perspective.

Process/Discussion Group

During both the fall and spring semester the training cohort meets as a group every week for a one hour process/discussion group facilitated by two senior staff. The goals of this group are to provide a confidential and safe space to explore issues of the training experience, reflect on one’s clinical work and issues of professional development and identity.

Evaluation Process

Written evaluations will occur quarterly during the fellowship year, and fellows will have the opportunity to review and discuss their evaluation during individual supervision. We view this as an active process and encourage the intern to provide feedback to his/her supervisor as well. The evaluation will be based on goals, expectations, and objectives. Areas of evaluation will include, but not be limited to ethics, diversity, intervention, professionalism, and supervision.

Post Doctoral Training Objectives

  1. Assessment and Diagnosis: Psychologists-in-Training shall demonstrate competency in conducting psychological evaluations that integrate client data to provide accurate diagnoses and to make useful treatment/intervention recommendations.
  2. Intervention: Psychologists-in-Training shall demonstrate competency in conducting individual psychological interventions across a variety of problems and populations.
  1. Consultation and Communication: Psychologists-in-Training shall demonstrate competency in professional consultation with colleagues, faculty, staff, parents, and relevant others.
  1. Professional and Ethical Behavior: Psychologists-in-Training shall demonstrate competency in their ability to use sound professional judgment and shall have the capability to function autonomously and responsibly as practicing psychologists. They will maintain awareness of their strengths and limitations, as well as the need for consultation and continued professional development.
  2. Human Diversity: Psychologists-in-Training shall become aware of cultural and individual diversity and shall integrate this awareness in all spheres of their psychological practice.
  3. Practitioner-Scholar Model/Scholarly Inquiry: Psychologists-in-Training shall demonstrate critical thinking about relevant theoretical and scientific literature and apply this thinking to their clinical and research work.
  4. Psycho-educational Outreach and Programming: Psychologists-in-Training will develop competence and confidence in developing educational outreach programs for students, faculty, and/or staff. Interns will develop professional-level presentation skills in a variety of contexts.