As temporary employees of the university, interns are eligible for the salary and benefits described below. Over the course of their year with us, interns participate in formal evaluations of their work and the internship program, and abide by due process and grievance procedures, should conflicts arise. Read on for further details.
Duration and Stipend
The 2,000 hour full-time internship begins September 1 and ends August 31. This Professional Staff Temporary Position (PSTP) is paid $38,880 annually ($3,240 monthly) and is benefits-eligible (see below). The intern salary is considered non-exempt from overtime according to the Fair Labor Standards Act and Washington Minimum Wage Act. Interns are not allowed to accrue overtime hours.
Benefits, Time Off, and Holidays
The full-time internship is a benefits-eligible position that accrues leave according to the UW Human Resources website Summary of Benefits for Psychology Interns. Benefits include dental insurance, disability insurance, health insurance, and life insurance. Interns also participate in the University’s holiday schedule (11 Washington State-recognized holidays annually), accrue sick and vacation time off, and receive an annual personal holiday. Specifically, interns:
• are allotted 1 personal holiday (to be taken with supervisor approval).
• accrue 10 hours of vacation per month of completed employment (totaling 120 hours or 15 days of vacation annually). Vacation may be taken following the first month’s accrual. Interns are asked to reserve 5 vacation days for the last 5 days of internship to allow staff to transition and prepare for the incoming trainees.
• accrue 8 hours of sick leave per month of completed employment (totaling 96 hours or 12 days of sick leave annually). Sick time off accrues at the end of the month in which it is earned and is available for use the following month.
• are allotted 5 days of professional leave (e.g. to defend a dissertation or attend professional meetings and conferences).
• the university also fully subsidizes U-PASS, giving interns full fare coverage on local/regional buses, the Sounder train, Link light rail, and vanpool services.
Evaluation and Communication with DCT
Evaluation is an important aspect of internship training, as it facilitates the communication between supervisors and interns about the intern’s strengths, areas for growth, and recommended methods for achieving the required internship competencies. PAWS staff meet at each mid-quarter period to informally report to the Training Director about the progress of each trainee. Supervisors are expected to provide timely and specific feedback to interns so that improvements can be made during the course of the quarter, and so that there are no surprises when it is time for formal evaluations. At the end of each quarter, the individual supervisor collects feedback from all training staff and shares with the intern their feedback in the form of the formal Internship Competency Evaluation. In order to complete internship successfully, interns must receive a rating of 3 or above (on a 1 to 5 scale where 3=at current expected level of competency) on all items by the end of the internship year. Interns also provide formal evaluations of their individual and group supervisors, the Training Director, each training seminar, orientation activities, and the internship program as a whole. This feedback is used to facilitate discussion and to consider program improvements.
Copies of each intern’s evaluations are sent to the doctoral program after each of four formal evaluation periods (timed with each academic quarter) which generally fall in December, March, June, and August. Interns receive a copy of their evaluation and a copy is placed in the intern’s file. Informal contact with the doctoral program is maintained throughout the year via e-mail or phone contacts. Program directors are invited to call and/or visit PAWS at their convenience during the internship year.
Communication between doctoral training programs and internship programs is of critical importance to the overall development of competent new psychologists. The internship is a required part of the doctoral degree, and while the internship staff assess the student’s performance during the internship year, the doctoral program is ultimately responsible for evaluation of the student’s readiness for graduation and entrance to the profession. Therefore, evaluative communication must occur between the two training partners. The Training Director contacts the intern’s home academic program within one week following the APPIC Match, at which time the doctoral program/DCT is included on correspondence congratulating the intern on matching with PAWS and requesting the intern sign the Appointment Letter that is attached to the email. The doctoral program/DCT is sent a signed copy of the Appointment Letter. Next, the Training Director typically contacts the DCT in the summer, before internship begins, to express enthusiasm for working with the intern and DCT, and to request the intern’s most recent clinical (practicum) evaluation, if available. The Training Director remains in contact throughout the training year, emailing the DCT each quarterly Internship Competency Evaluation and providing a brief summary of the intern’s progress. The Training Director is also available to the doctoral program, should questions arise during internship. If a remediation plan is begun or in progress, the Training Director will be in close contact with an interns’ doctoral program to keep them apprised of the process as well as to check in about any actions that may be taken by the doctoral program.
Due Process and Grievance Procedures
Staff and interns are encouraged to discuss and resolve conflicts informally. However, if this cannot occur, the Due Process Procedures for Training Staff and Grievance Procedures for Doctoral Psychology Interns documents provide formal mechanisms and guidance for PAWS and trainees to respond to issues of concern. The documents are available from the Training Director, included in the Intern Manual, and reviewed during September orientation.