Doctoral psychology internship overview

About our internship

Sharp HealthCare's APA-accredited psychology doctoral internship in clinical psychology provides psychologists-in-training with a yearlong, in-depth training experience.

On each of three four-month rotations, interns become members of the interdisciplinary team. Rotations are in acute care, inpatient, intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization programs. Our various units and programs serve children, adolescents, adults and seniors with a broad range of presenting problems.

All interns work on at least two units/programs at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital and may also rotate through Sharp McDonald Center. Patients in these programs vary greatly in terms of their individual and cultural identities as well as presenting problems and thus a desire to understand and integrate information about patients' individual and cultural diversity is integral in our training.

At Sharp Mesa Vista and Sharp McDonald Center, the interdisciplinary team is the foundation of care. Psychiatrists, social workers, psychologists, pharmacists, activity therapists, nurses, chaplains and other professionals work cooperatively to treat patients. Psychologists, postdoctoral fellows, doctoral interns and psychology practicum students are valued members of the treatment team, and are looked to for clinical and program leadership and direction.

Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital is the largest and oldest psychiatric hospital in San Diego and, as part of the Sharp HealthCare system, has become the largest provider of behavioral health services in the county. It is a 150-bed, freestanding, psychiatric hospital located in the heart of San Diego. The hospital operates from two buildings on attractively appointed grounds and is located adjacent to the newly expanded Sharp Memorial Hospital (an acute-care hospital), James S. Brown Pavilion, Sharp Memorial Rehabilitation Center, Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns and Sharp Rees-Stealy Medical Group.

The McDonald Center at Sharp HealthCare is San Diego's most comprehensive hospital-based chemical dependency treatment program, which cares for adults, transitional-age youth and families. The center provides medically-supervised detox and treatment for substance use disorders. Treatment is provided in residential, partial hospital and intensive outpatient programs, based on need. Many patients start in residential and step down to lower levels of care.

Sharp HealthCare is licensed and/or accredited by the California Department of Health Services and The Joint Commission. Sharp is a member of the National Association of Private Psychiatric Hospitals and the California Association of Hospitals and Health Systems.

About Sharp HealthCare

Sharp HealthCare is San Diego's largest health care organization and the city's largest employer outside the military.

Sharp is a private, not-for-profit organization operated by a local board of directors. It offers complete health care to a large part of the San Diego population through a network of hospitals, clinics and physician organizations. Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital is the largest private freestanding psychiatric hospital in California and Sharp Grossmont is the largest full-service hospital in the region.

Sharp HealthCare accepts private insurance and Medicare/Medicaid, as well as self-pay financing.

San Diego is the ninth largest city in the United States and is rich in recreational, cultural and educational resources.

Our fair city is home to several major universities, such as the University of California San Diego, San Diego State University, University of San Diego and others. Faculty from most, if not all, of these institutions have contributed to our internship seminars over the years.

Our accreditation

Sharp HealthCare's Doctoral Internship in Clinical Psychology has been continuously accredited by the American Psychological Association since 1998. Additional information about the accreditation process can be obtained from:

  • American Psychological Association's Commission on Accreditation
    750 First St. NE
    Washington DC, 20002-4242

This internship is listed and follows the guidelines of the Association of Postdoctoral and Internship Centers in Psychology (APPIC). Additional information about APPIC or internship applications can be obtained from:

    10 "G" St. NE
    Washington DC, 20002

Sharp HealthCare's APPIC Program Number is 1153.

For questions regarding the internship, please contact the clinical training director, Kelsey Bradshaw, PhD, at or at 858-836-8347.