Kennedy Krieger Institute has introduced a new training initiative and expansion of their psychology internship program, designed to provide future psychologists with unique training that will improve the availability and quality of mental health services for children with hearing loss or deafness.
Funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), this first-of-its-kind intensive internship will provide both cultural and linguistic training with the sole purpose of improving the ability of psychologists to provide clinical services to individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing.
The Kennedy Krieger internship program will provide future psychologists with the necessary and vital preparation to address a range of significant mental health and neurodevelopmental problems in children, adolescents and young adults who are deaf or hard-of-hearing.
The new training program will extend the Institute's predoctoral internship, which is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association. Slated to begin in July 2013, the new program received funding to provide training to 4 future psychologists. Participants will receive training within Kennedy Krieger's Deafness Related Evaluations and More (DREAM) Clinic in the Department of Neuropsychology, as well as the Pediatric Psychology Clinic and Consultation Program in the Department of Behavioral Psychology. The internship training initiative was designed to provide a wide range of experiences to trainees to prepare them to meet the needs of children who are deaf or hard-of-hearing in a manner that is accessible and culturally competent.
"It is critical for professionals to gain specialized experience conducting neuropsychological assessments in children with hearing loss who use a variety of communication modalities including American Sign Language," said Dr. Jennifer Reesman, PhD, Director of the DREAM Clinic at Kennedy Krieger. "And although this is an internship to prepare future professionals, it is really the children we are committed to serving who will benefit the most."