Clinical Training Events

2016 WLA/MFT Campus Practicum Mentor Fair

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by Rebecca Reed and Her Clinical Training Staff


On Tuesday night, March 15th, 2016, GSEP’s LMFT/LPCC Clinical Training Department hosted an annual Practicum Mentor Fair during the Preparing for Practicum class (Psy 661).  Our WLA pre-practicum students made connections with MFT student mentors from our Practicum  (Psy 662) classes and site Supervisors to learn about 2016 practicum training opportunities. We had a range of practicum sites join us, such as The Maple Counseling Center, Exodus Recovery and Outreach Concern.  There were a total of 10 practicum sites, over 45 students, 6 pizzas and one cooler filled with drinks that showed up to this festive fair.

One student commented that, “I enjoyed learning from more experienced practicum students about their meaningful clinical work at their sites and I was challenged to be open to the type of population I expect to work with.”  Another student reported that she was glad that she came because it inspired her to get her resume out to more practicum supervisors.

Supervisors expressed that they were grateful for the opportunity to meet many potential trainees. They were especially pleased with the turnout and shortly after the fair, some students communicated that they were already being contacted for interviews by our practicum sites. Overall, it can be said that this practicum fair was successful for both students and supervisors. We can expect successful connections from this event.


2016 Irvine Campus Practicum Mentor Faire

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\ˈprak-ti-kəm\ a word frequently heard on the graduate level and usually synonymous with students seeking professions in teaching, nursing or in our case psychotherapy.  It involves working in the area of study and applying the knowledge that has been obtained during coursework.  For first year graduate students the word is foreign and for second year the word may bring a sense of anxiety, excitement and glee.

On Monday, March 21, 2016 Pepperdine University – Irvine Graduate Campus held its Practicum Mentor Faire.  The practicum mentor faire is designed to give graduate students, specifically pre-practicum students the opportunity to ask questions of students working with agencies and seeing clients.  It is a chance to obtain insight into this somewhat exclusive experience.  Not only are students gaining insight, but they receive courage and empowerment from a group of students who have faced the beast, and are conquering it.

During the 30 minute meeting, it was a small intimate setting.  Students from pre-practicum sat in a group, while the mentors sat in a circle fielding questions.  Each mentor provided a description of their agency, supervisory expectations, and a holistic synopsis of their day to day process.  Represented agencies were Monarch Shores, California Family Institute, PRYDE, Turning Point, and ? (Nicola: I don’t recall the location in Whittier).

Students asked questions that ranged from “how many hours are you allowed?” to “is it possible to work for an agency while accruing your hours?”. Each question was answered with great insight and compassion, always reassuring the students that the journey through practicum was possible with a plan and strategy.

One student shared her concerns about having a full-time job and landing an agency that would be able to understand her life commitments.  After each of the mentors finish trying to help think of ways she could make it work, I recall one of them simply saying “you can do it!”

While the mentor faire was brief, I left with a greater appreciation of the work that the Professional Development and Clinical Training team is trying to do for students.  For me, the mentor faire would be likened to a pre-game preparation with coaches or senior players who know the inner workings of the process.  I left feeling reassured that when it was time for me to encounter that foreign word known as \ˈprak-ti-kəm\, Pepperdine University – Irvine Graduate Campus would ensure that I was well prepared.

Irvine Graduate Campus Spring 2016 Events

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Here’s what we have coming up in the M.A. Psychology Professional Development and Clinical Training Department at the Irvine Graduate Campus for the rest of the spring semester!

MFT Consortium of Orange County: Wednesday, March 16, 9:30 – 11:00 a.m.

Practicum Mentor Fair: Monday, March 21, 5:30 – 6:15 pm in Psy. 661 class.

Guest Speaker w/Dave Jensen, J.D.: The Psychotherapist as Creator of Outcomes: Wednesday, March 28, 5:00 – 7:00 pm
Law & Ethics presentation by CAMFT Staff Attorney, Dave Jensen, J.D., hosted in Melanie Coughlin’s Law & Ethics class.

OC CAMFT & MFT Programs Trainee and Intern Fair: Saturday, April 2, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Clinical Connections w/Sheila Sayani, LMFT: Attachment Theory in Working with Couples: Saturday, April 9, 11:30 am – 1:30 pm

Intern Registration Meeting: Tuesday, April 19, 4:15 p.m.
As you wind down your time in the MFT/LCC program, your Clinical Training Coordinator will lead a special edition of your PSY 642 class to help you transition from being a student to a registered intern with the BBS.


Encino Graduate Campus Spring 2016 Events

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Here’s what we have coming up in the M.A. Psychology Professional Development and Clinical Training Department at the Encino Graduate Campus for the rest of the spring semester!

Practicum Mentor Fair: Wednesday, March 23, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., Psy. 661 class.
A chance to talk with current Encino students about their practicum sites and experiences.

Clinical Connections Panel: Life After Pepperdine: Saturday, March 5, 3:30 – 5:00 p.m.
A special presentation by three Pepperdine Encino alums who have explored three different paths in the field of psychology.

Intern Registration Meeting: Wednesday, April 20, 4:15 – 5:30 p.m., Psy. 642 class.


West LA Graduate Campus Spring 2016 Events

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Here’s what we have coming up in the M.A. Psychology Professional Development and Clinical Training Department at the West LA Graduate Campus for the rest of the spring semester!

Tips for a Successful Practicum: Tuesday, March 8, 7:15 p.m., Psy. 661 class.

Clinical Connections w/Hasmik Arkelyan, M.A., J.D., Ph.D.: Charming Monsters: Inside the Minds of Sociopaths & Psychopaths: Friday, March 11, 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Intern Registration Meeting: Monday, April 4, 7:15 p.m., Psy. 642 class.

Private Practice Visit w/Jody Echegaray: Friday, March 18, 12:00 p.m. at her practice in Brentwood.

Clinical Connections w/Alana Route, Psy.D.: Technology and Therapy: How to Deal with Ethical Dilemmas: Friday, April 1, 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Coffee Talk w/Sheila Sayani, M.A., LMFT: Q&A Basics About Couple’s Therapy: Friday, February 26, 11:00 a.m


My Experience as a Graduate Assistant

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by Akshay Mehta

Should I pursue an MFT, an MA or a Psy.D.? What are the requirements for licensure? When will I begin my internship and how long will it take to complete? What is the best way to network? These are ordinary curiosities for a graduate student. But for many, these questions seem to linger around without ever getting definite answers. It builds up in our minds to such an extent that we might find ourselves thinking of them as essay prompts. Therefore, this forces us to endlessly research about them online and/or attempt to understand them further by scheduling meetings with an expert. Sounds hectic right?

These ‘experts’ are Pepperdine’s faculty, staff and alumni. And luckily for me, I am an assistant to one of these experts. Her name is Rebecca Reed. She is the MFT Clinical Training Coordinator at the West LA Campus. She is a ‘one stop shop’ for anything related to MFT. Her genuine devotion to making sure Pepperdine students succeed easily makes her a critical and valuable resource for someone pursuing an MFT. Although she invests time and effort in everyone equally, I must brag a little about my accessibility to her as her Graduate Assistant. Not only am I able to help her in assisting other students with various needs, but by working next to her I am able to take advantage of her wisdom (stemming from over 25 years of experience at Pepperdine). I consider my assistantship to Rebecca an invaluable opportunity for which I am extremely grateful.

But the flip side of my position brings satisfaction through interaction with the students. Every new semester, Rebecca and I schedule ‘Quick Meets’ with new MA or MFT students. These are short but extremely beneficial presentations, which provide a large number of resources to ultimately help students in getting to know their program better and the various ways they can effectively excel in it. Equipped with information on private practice field trips, Pepperdine MFT workshops, career fairs and career-marketing tools, I am able to really connect with new students and witness the anxiety settle in them.

My work as a Graduate Assistant to Rebecca Reed has provided me with just as much satisfaction, knowledge and confidence as the education I have retained from my classes. With the level of support and accessibility to resources I have in my LMFT/LPCC path, it is now up to me to humbly recognize it and continue making the best of it. Because one day soon, my current experience will be seen as the foundation of my professional life.

Please also note that Quick Meets and Clinical Training Staff are present at every Pepperdine Campus. Please contact Kathleen Wenger, Manager of Clinical Training and Professional Development at the Irvine Campus, Alice Richardson, Clinical Training and Professional Development Coordinator at the Encino Campus, Andrea Lipnicki, at the Malibu Campus or Rebecca Reed, Clinical Training and Professional Development Coordinator at the WLA Campus depending on your specific campus or practicum site preferable locations.

Encino Graduate Campus November and December Events

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Here’s what we have coming up in the M.A. Psychology Professional Development and Clinical Training Department at the Encino Graduate Campus for the rest of the fall semester!

Clinical Connections: How I Became a Specialist in Eating Disorders: Saturday, November 7, 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Don’t miss out on this amazing presenter as she shares her training, education and experience. Presented by Alli Spots-De lazzer

Coffee Talk w/Alice Richardson: Thursday, December 3, 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
A casual discussion format. You bring the questions, we’ll provide the answers, and you’ll leave with some coffee and treats!

Intern Registration Meeting: Wednesday, December 16, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Psy. 642 class.
As you wind down your time in the MACLP program we will show you, step-by step how to transition from being a Student Trainee to becoming a registered intern with the BBS.