Internship Opportunities

People Helping People offers a variety of opportunities for students and professionals working towards either Master or Doctoral level degrees in Psychology. Depending on your status and what degree / licensure you are in progress of obtaining, PHP can provide you with a diverse and rigorous case load, with clients ranging across the life span. PHP provides interns with the support and supervision needed to develop or hone their clinical skills and experience. For more information on opportunities please read below.

Obtain Your Clinical Hours AND Support a Great Cause!

People Helping People is the only low to no cost provider of clinical services in the Santa Ynez Valley. PHP works with low to very low income families and children, and never turns away a person in need due to their inability to pay. PHP currently is contracted with 3 local school districts to provide no-cost counseling to students attending district schools. Additionally, PHP provides mental health and counseling services to the general community that include:

  • Individual Counseling
  • Family Counseling
  • Nurturing Parenting – Parent / Child Education Courses
  • Group Counseling / Topic Specific Support Groups
  • Marriage/Couples Counseling

Currently, PHP has openings for students working towards a Master’s Degree in Psychology at both the Trainee and Intern status. Most services are provided during school hours, however, PHP is flexible with schedules. Supervision is delivered by PHP’s Clinical Supervisor, a licensed MFT with over 20 years of experience. Supervision is provided both Individually as well as in a group setting. PHP maintains a dynamic didactic training calendar that provides for personal and professional growth.

Stipends are available. Additional stipends are available for Bi-Lingual Interns. For more information, or to express interest, please contact PHP’s Clinical Supervisor, Rena Smith, at, or by calling (805) 686-0295 x113.

Complete Your Doctoral Level Internship in Santa Barbara County with PHP!

It is the mission of PHP to improve the quality of life of the men, women, and children living in the Santa Ynez Valley and recognizes that an integral part of that includes mental and emotional wellness. As such, in the past two years, PHP has strategically increased both the quantity and depth of clinical services offered in-house. PHP continues to seek out new ways to deliver high quality, culturally bound, clinical services.

PHP’s Doctoral Internship Program is a member of CAPIC (The California Psychology Internship Council) and adheres to all training and supervisory guidelines thereof. PHP’s clinical program offers a diverse client and clinical experience. There is intensive and extensive supervision and training to prepare interns for their profession.

Training Program

The training program is designed to evaluate and enhance competency levels in clinical knowledge, skills, and judgment. Interns receive weekly supervision by highly qualified clinical staff, as well as opportunities to further refine existing ideas and skills. Structurally, the internships are designed to provide a comprehensive, organized sequence of training and direct clinical experience. Interns who are interested in working with children and adolescents will have the opportunity to work in the local school district. Interns are required to master the administrative aspects of the program.

The core program consists of:

  • Individual and Group Supervision
  • Counseling Individuals
  • Counseling Couples and Families
  • Co-facilitating Group Psychotherapy
  • Crisis Intervention and On-Call rotation
  • Weekly Educational Seminars
  • Diagnostic Assessment Training

The Program offers seminars and training in a variety of theory, techniques, and applied interventions. View a sample didactic calendar.

Training for the two-year part time internship track is designed to be sequential and will provide interns with trainings that are graded in complexity and provide for continued development and challenges.

Interns are required to attend weekly training seminars. These seminars are designed to educate interns about theoretical and practical information relevant to various areas of intervention. Seminars are also an opportunity for interns to discuss topics of interest for their professional development. Examples of topics include: basics of psychodynamic therapy, crisis intervention, transference and counter transference, interpretation in psychotherapy, legal and ethical issues, multicultural issues, self-disclosure, the mental status examination, short-term therapy, couples and family therapy, and the memory in therapy. The Program offers a weekly, ten-month training on theoretical and clinical applications when working with children and adolescents. These seminars and workshops are open to all interns (Masters and Doctoral level). The presenters are seasoned professionals from local universities, institutes, organizations, and PHP staff. Some trainings will be delivered or offered at a location different than the training site.

Theoretical Orientation

The theoretical orientation of the PHP program encompasses CBT, contemporary psychodynamic, family systems, and crisis intervention. A wide range of psychodynamic models guide the clinical practice of the program. The Center’s educative program includes the core of psychodynamic theory and technique that has evolved over the years. Recent developments, which have expanded the theory of object relations, self- and intersubjective psychologies, and crisis intervention, are presented to enlarge the range of clinical techniques. Interns are taught and encouraged to think of alternative approaches to formulating treatment plans and interventions for each case.


Interns will participate in weekly individual and group supervision in a variety of treatment settings. The minimum amount of supervision that the intern receives is based upon licensing requirements. For each modality in which the intern participates, there is required additional training and supervision. Interns present their cases verbally, and maybe required to videotape selected clients for supervisory purposes. It is understood that growth occurs in the context of close effective supervision, coupled with the intern’s freedom to experiment and develop a sense of independence and competence. The program supports ongoing exchange between supervisee and supervisor, and is open to examination and modification of clinical programs and procedures to meet changing needs.


There is a minimum requirement of a one-year, part-time, commitment to the program. In addition, participation in individual and group supervision is provided with ongoing core curriculum training. PHP offers a part-time one-year track, as well as a part-time two-year track program. Internships typically begin annually, in August, and finish at the end of July. However, start/end dates can be flexible.

Qualifications and Application

Pre doctoral Psychology students are eligible for application after completion of a
one-year practicum experience and if enrolled in an accredited program. Applications are accepted through CAPIC. To apply, please visit:

For all intern candidates, an interview with a PHP staff member will be part of the selection process. Applicants will be notified of their acceptance or rejection in accordance with the standard practices of “internship offers and acceptance.” The program adheres to the time, dates, and procedures required by those policies.


Please contact PHP’s Clinical Supervisor, Rena Smith, at, or by calling (805) 686-0295 x113.