Frequently Asked Questions

What can I expect from relocating to San Francisco/the Bay Area?
The SF Bay Area is one of the most diverse regions in the U.S. You can find famous beaches, forests, wineries, museums, and restaurants here. It is also home to many tech companies, such as Facebook, Google, and Twitter. For these reasons, it is also one of the most expensive places to live. You can expect a higher cost of living, but also unique places to explore and enjoy. There is always something fun, inexpensive (or free) to do; there are numerous festivals, shows, and other events throughout the Bay Area. Certain things, such as local, fresh produce, can be considerably less expensive in the Bay Area than in other major cities. Commuting is the norm in the Bay Area and is made easy by a fantastic public transportation system. USF currently offers a monthly $81 reimbursement for employee commuting needs. There is something for everyone in the Bay Area—a reason that many people say the cost of living here is “worth it.”

What kind of special projects do postdoctoral fellows take part in?
Special projects vary based on your interests and the needs of the counseling center. Past projects have included psychoeducational group program development, piloting a drop-in consultation program, grant writing, expanding services to international students, and providing community training for suicide prevention.

Can postdoctoral fellows facilitate groups?
Yes, there are several different group facilitation opportunities. Most frequently, postdoctoral fellows have partnered with licensed psychologists to co-facilitate established support or interpersonal process groups; fellows have also co-facilitated psychoeducational groups together. Additionally, there are opportunities to develop and facilitate groups on your own.

Are postdoctoral fellows provided their own office?
Yes, they are provided with their own furnished office and are encouraged to personalize their space by bringing in art and other décor.

Are there opportunities to do outreach?
CAPS provides outreach throughout the academic year. There are opportunities for postdoctoral fellows to develop their own outreach projects, serve on University committees, or partner with other CAPS staff to provide ongoing outreach. Past projects have included providing training to resident advisors, presenting to families of incoming students, organizing sexual assault awareness month events, and acting as a guest presenter at a USF course for health professionals.

Will postdoctoral fellows be able to provide supervision?
There are opportunities to provide non-clinical, project-based supervision to a master’s-level student in USF’s Student Affairs or other graduate program. Additionally, postdoctoral fellows facilitate a biweekly clinical consultation group for advanced doctoral-level interns. Postdoctoral fellows also assume a leadership role in the recruitment and selection process for the next cohort of trainees. Additional supervisory opportunities may become available as CAPS continues to partner with other USF programs.

How are supervisory assignments made?
Prior to the start of the fellowship, postdoctoral fellows complete a self-reflection questionnaire about supervisory needs. Supervisors are then selected based on your needs and clinical interests, as well as staff capacity. Postdoctoral fellows have an opportunity to be supervised by several staff psychologists by participating in two individual supervisions (one with a primary supervisor and one with a delegated supervisor) and two group supervisions per week.

Do postdoctoral fellows receive professional development time?
Yes, they receive 4 hours per week, either at CAPS or off site after scheduled hours, for professional development activities such as studying for licensing exams, searching for jobs, reading about mental health issues, and other tasks. Postdoctoral fellows also receive 24 hours (or three 8-hour days) to use for job interviews, attending conferences, taking a licensing exam, and other activities. Additionally, they attend the Northern California Training Directors Conference and the San Jose State University Multicultural Training Day.

How many clients a week are postdoctoral fellows expected to see?
Postdoctoral fellows provide up to 22 hours of direct clinical service per week, which includes individual therapy, group therapy, crisis intervention, outreach, and consultation. They experience flexibility in the number of clinical hours, depending on what types of activities they are involved in. For instance, during one week, a postdoctoral fellow may facilitate a 1.5-hour group, do a 1.5-hour outreach presentation, see a crisis walk-in client for 1 hour, facilitate 1 hour of peer consultation group, see four clients for intake appointments, and schedule appointments for 13 ongoing individual clients.

Are postdoctoral fellows required to be on call on nights and weekends?
Postdoctoral fellows and CAPS' licensed staff members take part in being on duty for a rotating one-week on-call shift. Typically, you are on call 4 or 5 times during the academic school year. During the shift, you may receive calls from residence life staff, public safety officers, or other University personnel to provide psychological consultation regarding a student issue. Postdoctoral fellows always have access to licensed staff members for support and consultation during their on-call shifts.

Can I expect a diverse caseload?
With an enrollment of more than 10,000 at USF, the student body represents multiculturally diverse ethnic, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds, 50 states, and 98 countries. According to the most recent U.S. News & World Report, USF is rated firth in the nation for campus ethnic diversity and in the top 30 for campuses with the most international students. Clients seen at CAPS are representative of the diverse student body of USF in near equal proportions. Additionally, many students are drawn to USF for its diversity and are eager to discuss cultural issues in therapy.

What do postdoctoral fellows do after they leave CAPS?
A variety of things! Many go on to work as staff psychologists at other university counseling centers. Others transition to working in medical centers, community mental health, or private practice settings. Postdoctoral fellows have also transitioned to non-clinical work, such as teaching faculty roles. The CAPS staff are happy to provide mentorship throughout a postdoctoral fellow’s career trajectory.

How is CAPS integrated with the rest of the USF community?
Many departments turn to CAPS for consultation and share appreciation for the services CAPS provides to the USF community. CAPS receives many requests to speak and participate in events, workshops, and meetings in addition to representation on committees and task forces throughout the University. CAPS staff enjoy not being “siloed” and frequently meet with other USF colleagues to discuss how to collaboratively support students.

Do I have to apply through the APPIC Psychology Postdoctoral Application (APPA) CAS?
If applying through the APPA-CAS system presents financial hardship, please contact Nancy Glenn, Ph.D. (nlglenn@usfca.edu) for an alternative application procedure.