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VA San Diego Healthcare System


Psychology Internship and Fellowship Programs

facility photoThe VA San Diego Healthcare System (VASDHS) is pleased to offer several psychology training opportunities, each of which are strongly integrated with the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) Department of Psychiatry. This collaboration results in a rich clinical and research environment.  Additional information on these training programs can be found below. For additional information on the UCSD Department of Psychiatry, please visit the departmental website at

VASDHS/UCSD Psychology Internship Training Program

Co-Directors: Sandra Brown, Ph.D., ABPP & Amy Jak, Ph.D.

For over 40 years, the VASDHS/UCSD Psychology Internship Program has been training psychologists. We are one of the largest internship programs in the country. Our internship program has been APA-accredited since 1986, with current accreditation through 2019. We are also a member of the Internship and Postdoctoral Programs in Professional Psychology (APPIC). Our psychology internship program provides rigorous and comprehensive scientist-practitioner training across a diverse range of settings and patient populations. We have notable training in evidence-based practices with mood and sleep disorders, PTSD, substance abuse, eating disorders, and neuropsychology, among others. Our rotations include both in- and outpatient experiences, with training opportunities across the lifespan, from children to older adults. The psychology internship training program is well integrated into the many training programs within the VA and UCSD Department of Psychiatry, affording psychology interns the opportunity to work alongside other trainees including psychiatry residents and fellows. Our large program affords a myriad of training resources but there is still a strong sense of community and collaboration as our trainees progress toward independence. Our faculty are strongly committed to training the next generation of psychologists. Interns graduating from our program have been highly competitive and gone on to post-doctoral fellowships and often to academic faculty positions.

Internship Program Website

Download the Brochure:Psychology Internship – San Diego

VASDHS/UCSD Clinical Psychology Postdoctoral Residency Program

Training Director: Brian Buzzella, Ph.D., ABPP
Associate Training Director: Autumn Backhaus, Ph.D.

The VASDHS/UCSD Clinical Psychology Postdoctoral Residency Program is based on the scientist-practitioner model, focused on creating a foundation in clinical and research/dissemination practices. The goal of the Program is to provide training to clinical psychology postdoctoral residents to prepare them for careers as independent practitioners able to translate the scientific literature into sound, evidenced-based interventions and to evaluate and disseminate these approaches. At the end of the program, residents are prepared for VA or university medical center careers that integrate clinical, training, research and leadership activities. The Program is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) as a postdoctoral residency program in clinical psychology.

Download the Brochure:
Clinical Psychology Postdoctoral Residency – San Diego

VASDHS/UCSD Psychology Clinical Research Postdoctoral Residency Program

Training Director: Laurie Lindamer, Ph.D.

The VASDHS/UCSD Psychology Clinical Research Postdoctoral Residency Program is a two-year program that uses a clinician-scientist model to combine individual mentored clinical research and advanced clinical training with state-of-the-art assessment, treatment, program evaluation, and research experiences in an interdisciplinary setting. The primary goal is to train psychologists to become leading clinical researchers in high priority areas of mental health. At the end of the program, residents are prepared for VA or university medical center careers that integrate research, clinical, training, and leadership activities.

The program offers two-year positions in each of four clinical research tracks for the 2018-2020 training period (September 1, 2018 - August 31, 2020):

  • VISN-22 Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center (MIRECC) Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Illness Research and Treatment (schizophrenia and other related disorders)
  • VA Center of Excellence for Stress and Mental Health (CESAMH) Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Illness Research and Treatment (PTSD, mTBI, and other trauma-related disorders)
  • VA Advanced Fellowship in Women’s Health with a special focus on interpersonal trauma
  • VA Interprofessional Advanced Fellowship in Addiction Treatment

This Program is accredited, on contingency* by the American Psychological Association (APA) as a postdoctoral residency program in clinical psychology.

(*status given to new programs lacking distal outcome data)

Download the Brochure:
Psychology Clinical Research Residency – San Diego

VA Interprofessional Fellowship Program in Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Oriented Services for Veterans with Serious Mental Illness

Training Director: Dimitri Perivoliotis, Ph.D.

The VASDHS/UCSD Interprofessional Fellowship Program in Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Oriented Services (PSR Fellowship) is a state-of-the-art clinical training program that focuses on the theory and practice of psychosocial rehabilitation and recovery for people with serious mental illness (SMI). The program offers a major area of study in SMI to clinical psychology residents as well as residents from other disciplines including social work, vocational rehabilitation, nursing, and/or psychiatry. At least 85% of resident time will be devoted to training in psychosocial rehabilitation of people with SMI (primarily psychotic disorders) at the CARF-accredited VASDHS Psychosocial Rehabilitation & Recovery Center throughout the training year and a 3-month rotation at the VASDHS inpatient psychiatry unit. We offer one psychology resident per year an exposure to clinical psychology which involves up to 15% of supervised time working with non-SMI individuals at the VASDHS Wellness & Vocational Enrichment clinic. For all residents, individualized, mentored clinical and research training is combined with a curriculum that emphasizes a comprehensive psychosocial rehabilitation approach to service delivery, education, and implementing change in a mental health care setting. The program was recognized as an “exemplary training site” in SMI with a Certificate of Commendation from Division 18 of the American Psychological Association (APA) in 2017 and in 2018 won the APA Division 18 President’s Excellence in Training Award “in recognition as an outstanding psychology training program, preparing learners to provide recovery-oriented, evidence-based services to adults diagnosed with serious mental illness.”

Download the Brochure:
PSR Fellowship – San Diego

VASDHS Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Residency Program

Training Director: Mark W. Bondi, Ph.D., ABPP/CN
Associate Training Director: Amy J. Jak, Ph.D.

The VA Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Residency is a 2-year program at the VASDHS.  We have funding to recruit 1-2 postdoctoral residents each year in this specialty program in clinical neuropsychology.  We have developed this training program to constitute roughly an equal balance of clinical and research/didactic activity to prepare candidates for board certification and seek applicants with outstanding preparation in both. 

Emphasis areas include: 
  • aging and dementia
  • traumatic brain injury and related disorders.

Download the Brochure:
Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Residency