Testimonials from previous interns

Cliona Walker

Cliona was a psychology intern​ and with Bournemouth University in 2022. Read more about Cliona's experience at the Trust.

During my placement, I had many vital experiences which have equipped me with the skills required for a future career within psychology.

I participated in indirect clinical activity through business and governance meetings, working parties, projects, and supporting qualified psychologists clinically.

For direct clinical activity I contributed to referral meetings, triaging, high-risk meetings, transition meetings, file reviews, shadowing, and healthy dementia measure Assessments. Also, I was involved in professional development activities such as supervision, academic reading, training, psychology meetings, and multi-disciplinary meetings.

There were opportunities to shadow various professionals within the multi-disciplinary team such as nurses, speech and language therapists, and clinical psychologists. Additionally, numerous training opportunities were provided for me such as a Makaton sign language course.

One of the most significant aspects of my placement year was that it helped me to clarify my career goals. Before the placement my main goal was to become a clinical psychologist. Having had an enjoyable placement experience, this has confirmed that I still wish to pursue this career.

Olivia Coe

Olivia was a psychology intern​ and undergraduate psychology student with the University of Leeds in May 2018.

“During my time as a psychology intern I feel that I have developed enormously, both professionally and personally. I have gained invaluable knowledge, such as how to communicate with service users in various stages of dementia and with varying needs, managing my own caseload, developing an understanding of the role of clinical supervision and carrying out service evaluations.

"In each of these situations, I have been able to put the academic knowledge gained at university in to practice in a clinical environment, where my actions have real implications for patients and staff. Alongside my academic and clinical development, I have developed skills in self-reflection through bi-weekly clinical supervision with a clinical psychologist.

"The learning I have taken from these experiences is also transferrable to many other clinical settings. I have also been given a multitude of opportunities to attend training events, and have sought the opportunity to shadow clinical psychologists in various other settings, including inpatient adult mental health, child and adolescent mental health and eating disorders, giving me a well-rounded understanding of the profession.

"Overall, I would thoroughly recommend a psychology internship. I have learned how to utilise the skills gained at University in a clinical setting, and have developed a thorough understanding of the field of clinical psychology. I have learned that I am more capable than I had ever believed during my first two years as a Psychology student, and this has allowed my confidence to grow hugely.”

Jessica Black

Jessica was a former psychology intern​ and trainee clinical psychologist with Plymouth University in February 2017.

“I was able to get my foot in the door to the psychology world through a voluntary internship. I was supported by a service who were genuinely interested in giving me a high quality experience and also enabled me to continue in paid employment alongside the role. Without that opportunity I am not sure how I would have begun to get relevant experience to further my career.

"Now as a trainee psychologist I have returned to that service to complete one of my placements and will definitely be looking at applying for jobs with Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust on qualification”

Holly Bachelor

The below quote below is from an article published in issue 80 of the British Psychological Society’s publication Psych-talk. The article was written by Holly Bachelor. Holly was a former psychology intern and trainee clinical psychologist with Plymouth University in January 2015.

"I would really encourage you to pursue any opportunities like these as it is an invaluable experience. It allows you the chance to experience what it’s like to work in the environment that you are interested in, and this experience may change your mind completely, like it did mine.

"I believe that having a year placement in the field of applied psychology can help you to make an informed choice about your career. Otherwise, it might be that you achieve in the academic side of your desired field, but when you get to work in that environment, you may find it very different to what you expected.

"My year on placement has made me much more optimistic about pursuing psychology as a career, as well as helping me find an area of the subject that I feel enthusiastic about.”