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Graduate Internship Information

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Department Description:

Westwood Youth & Family Services has been supporting and advocating for the children and families in our community since 1986. We are a municipally funded agency focusing on the healthy social and emotional development of residents by providing a variety of educational, social, and counseling services for children ages 4 to 18 and their parents or guardians. Westwood Youth & Family Services works in close collaboration with other town agencies, the Westwood Public Schools, William James Interface and other community based non-profit groups.

We provide individual and family counseling, as well as parent consultation based on the child’s needs. We can assist clients and families with accessing local resources for specific needs, and/or for longer term counseling. Common presenting issues include: anxiety, depression, divorce adjustment, grief and loss, and attentional issues. The primary setting is a community center which is open to all residents. We also have a satellite office at Westwood High School.

Internship Description:

Graduate interns carry clinical caseloads comprised of individual clients and families. Interns also assist in running social skills groups with elementary school aged children utilizing a psychoeducational activity curriculum. Novel programming opportunities for other groups and workshops are available throughout the year.

Training Program

Interns at Youth & Family Services participate in the following training activities during the academic year:

Clinical Supervision - Individual (1x week)

Individual meeting with the Director or another member of the clinical staff of WY&FS to review all counseling work completed, develop treatment plans, educate regarding counseling strategies, etc. The Director or another member of the clinical staff also reviews all case files compiled by interns to assure that they meet legal and ethical standards.

Group Supervision (1 x week)

Group seminar and discussion led by a clinical staff member on the practice of individual, family and group work. This also includes internship collaborative meetings held jointly with the clinical staff and interns of the Needham, Dedham and Medfield Youth Commissions.

Clinical Observation (As appropriate)

Interns will be provided opportunities to observe the Director or other members of the WY&FS clinical staff. These opportunities will likely be in areas of consultations and intake assessments offered by the department and/or ongoing cases deemed appropriate for this purpose. Interns will also have opportunities to go to monthly department advisory board meetings, observe other human service department meetings and attend local speakers and trainings ass appropriate.

University Supervision and Evaluation

Interns participate in a group seminar and supervision with other students from their academic program. Site visits are conducted and semester evaluations of progress and performance are completed.

Internship Requirements:

Second year MSW candidates are preferred, but 1st year students are welcome to apply.

All intern candidates participate in at least one structured interview, provide academic and professional references, and are selected by the Director of Youth and Family Services. An initial Memorandum of Agreement regarding specific responsibilities is signed prior to placement.

A car is required for this internship in order to drive to various schools and departments in town.

Most of our programs and clinical sessions take place after school hours, between 2:00pm and 6:00pm, and availability during these hours would increase a student’s opportunities to see more and varied clients and gain increased experience. Similarly, we have evening programs that run multiple days of the week, and should an intern be available to participate, those would also provide excellent opportunities for learning. Interns must be available to attend a mandatory meeting on Fridays from 9:30AM to at least 12:30PM.

Questions: Please contact us at youth@townhall.westwood.ma.us or call us at (781) 320-1006.