Asya W., Class of 2009

Office of Professional Training

Asya W. Class of 2009

The Office of Professional Training (OPT) provides oversight and support to the clinical and professional training programs for the various degree programs at the JFK School of Psychology. Each training program is administrated by dedicated faculty and staff to ensure students receive high quality clinical training and fieldwork that meets university, regulatory, and accrediting body standards.

The OPT also oversees our Community-Based Counseling Program (CBCP), which functions as an internally managed practicum and internship program which provides high-quality, affordable outpatient mental health and psycho-educational services to the community.

In addition, the OPT manages clinical record requests from former clients of the John F. Kennedy University Counseling Centers and the CBCP.

OPT Services

  • Guide and administer student practicum, internship, externship, and other fieldwork placement processes
  • Provide guidance and mentoring to students throughout the training process
  • Develop and manage relationships with training sites throughout the greater Bay Area and surrounding communities
  • Collect, evaluate, and analyze student and site performance data
  • Provide consultation to program leaders and faculty, and participate in the academic review of student progress in training
  • Ensure that appropriate regulatory (e.g., BBS, BOP), accreditation (e.g., APA) and certification (AASP) standards are met

To contact the Office of Professional Training, please email [email protected].

Our Training Programs

For more information regarding our master’s in counseling psychology clinical training program, please email [email protected].

For more information regarding our PsyD clinical training program, please email [email protected].

For more information regarding our sport psychology fieldwork training program, please email [email protected].

Timothy Ford, MA, LMFT
Timothy Ford, MA, LMFT

Timothy Ford is Executive Director of the JFK School of Psychology, and oversees the Office of Professional Training. Tim received both his bachelor’s degree and master’s in counseling psychology at National University. He has over 20 years of experience in managerial and executive leadership roles at FedEx and Yahoo, as well as within the mental health field. Tim joined John F. Kennedy University as Director of Clinical Operations in 2017 and was the Director of Clinical Training for the Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology program from 2018-2020. Prior to joining the university, Tim was the clinical and program director for residential treatment centers and school-based mental health programs in the Bay Area, as well as a therapist in private practice. As a clinical supervisor for over 10 years, Tim is passionate about training and developing new therapists to meet the demands of the continuously changing mental health profession.

To contact Tim or for or for more information regarding the Office of Professional Training, please email [email protected].

Dr. Sharon Christensen, PsyD
Sharon Christensen, PsyD

Dr. Sharon Christensen is Director of Clinical Training for the PsyD Program and the lead faculty for the Correctional/Forensic Concentration. She teaches the Integrated Professional Seminar course focused on developing students’ clinical proficiency and professional development skills. She brings 20 years of experience as a clinician working with diverse, underserved populations. Her culturally informed clinical style helps her provide effective psychological services across populations in order to meet the diverse needs of the community. As Director of Clinical Training, Dr. Christensen actively mentors students from a developmental trajectory perspective meeting with students one-on-one to provide individualized support throughout the student’s clinical development as they matriculate through the program. Dr. Christensen is focused on meeting students where they are and providing them the support and clinical experience needed to reach their career goals in the field of Health Psychology.

To contact Dr. Sharon Christensen or for more information regarding our PsyD clinical training program, please email [email protected]

Julie Hayden, MA, CMPC
Julie Hayden, MA, CMPC

Professor Julie Hayden-Blackburn, MA, CMPC is the Director of Fieldwork Placement for the MA in Sport Psychology program. Professor Hayden-Blackburn earned her MA in sport psychology from JFKU in 2017 and her BS in psychology from Michigan State University. Professor Hayden-Blackburn is driven to provide a rewarding and challenging fieldwork placement experience for student-interns with this program, offering an unparalleled applied experience. She is extremely proud to be part of this fun and hard-working team. Professor Hayden-Blackburn also teaches for the MA in Sport Psychology program, specializing in fieldwork preparation and applied execution of mental performance techniques. Professor Hayden-Blackburn’s passion in the sport psychology field lies within enhancing sport and performance culture to promote healthy and safe motivational climates where athletes and performers are empowered to become the best versions of themselves, with a particular focus in gymnastics as a centerpiece of her private practice.

To contact Julie or for more information regarding our sport psychology fieldwork training program, please email [email protected].

Jessica Moniz, MA, LMFT
Jessica Moniz, MA, LMFT

Jes Moniz is the Interim Director of Clinical Training for our MA Counseling Psychology program, and also manages our Community Based Counseling Program. A graduate of JFKU’s master’s in counseling psychology program, she has provided development and leadership of the CBCP over the past 6 years. As a therapist, Jes has experience leading therapeutic groups, workshops, and treating individuals and families, and has worked with a diverse population of clients and students. Additionally, she has a background in academic counseling and instruction at Los Medanos College and JFKU. She leads her students and staff by example in fulfilling CBCP’s mission of providing affordable, quality mental health services to the community as well as providing a comprehensive and supportive clinical training program. Her passions include bringing mental health programs into schools and teaching, especially topics related to crisis and cultural competence.

To contact Jes or for more information regarding our Community-Based Counseling Program, please email [email protected].

Clinical Records Requests

Current or former clients of JFKU’s Community Counseling Centers or counselors in our CBCP’s community or school placement settings can request access and copies of their psychotherapy records from the Office of Professional Training. Please review the Client Record Request Packet.

If you have questions about the process for requesting records, feel free to contact the OPT at [email protected].

Community-Based Counseling Program (CBCP)

In support of the communities we serve, the JFK School of Psychology partners with many school districts and community agencies to provide counseling services via practicum placement in our Community Based Counseling Program (CBCP), internally managed by the OPT.

Graduate- and post-graduate-level psychology students provide on-site counseling services in K-12, college, and community agency settings throughout the local region.

Counselors who participate in the CBCP receive individual and group supervision from highly experienced NU clinical supervisors licensed in clinical psychology, professional counseling, social work, and marriage and family therapy. Counselors also receive extensive clinical orientation and didactic trainings to enhance their knowledge and skills.

Partner with our Community-Based Counseling Program

Agencies or schools that are interested in more information regarding the counseling services provided through our CBCP can email [email protected].

Through the OPT’s Community-Based Counseling Program (CBCP), our counselors provide mental health services in school, college, and partnering agency settings in the local community. Our counselors utilize a variety of treatment approaches, including, but not limited to, solution-focused brief therapy, humanistic therapy, expressive arts, and play therapy. Services offered include:

  • Individual counseling for adults and youth
  • Group therapy
  • Couples counseling
  • Family therapy
  • Referrals for acute crisis intervention
  • Services are tailored to the needs of each client, many who seek help coping with:
  • Depression, anxiety, grief, divorce, trauma, and other personal concerns
  • Youth issues: self-esteem, bullying, sexuality, and school-related problems
  • Family issues: parenting, child-parent conflicts, blended families, and violence prevention

The CBCP currently provides services to the following districts and community agencies:

  • Diablo Unified School District
  • Antioch Unified School District
  • Pittsburg Unified School District
  • Oakland Unified School District
  • Alameda Unified School District
  • Contra Costa Community College District
  • Solano Community College District
  • Family Justice Center

Clinical Training Experience

The CBCP provides a comprehensive clinical training experience that enables counselors to become well-rounded mental health professionals:

  • MFT trainees and associates from the JFK School of Psychology community and beyond are able to complete their mandated practicum and licensure hours and prepare for the state licensing exam
  • PsyD clinical trainees at the JFK School of Psychology are able to gain hours and an array of experience that will meet their practicum and/or externship requirements
  • Clinical supervision is provided by professionals employed by the OPT and licensed in clinical psychology, marriage and family therapy, and social work

Training Emphasis

The CBCP empowers counselors to provide therapy to diverse populations and to be professionally successful in a diverse range of settings.


CBCP training emphasizes the practice of solution-focused brief therapy, family systems, and humanistic approaches. Counselors are also supported in exploring populations and theories they are passionate about and that are relevant to graduation and to the licensing exams. All counselors are supported in their growth as mental health clinicians through ongoing clinical trainings.

Professional Skills

Counselors are also equipped to expand their repertoire of experience beyond the therapy setting. Our program uniquely teaches counselors how to work in community-based settings and introduces them to the policies and procedures inherent to our community-based program. Counselors learn how to collaborate with other helping professionals such as teachers, nurses, and social workers, how to provide community presentations/workshops, and how to represent themselves as professional clinicians in the community.

Clinical training topics include, but are not limited to:

Theories and Modalities

  • Solution-focused brief therapy
  • Humanistic and holistic approaches
  • Play/expressive arts/drama therapy techniques
  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family collateral and therapy work

Clinical Issues Relevant to CBCP Populations

  • Depression/anger/anxiety
  • Grief and loss
  • Crisis and trauma
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)
  • Working with veterans
  • Diversity and cultural competency
  • Developmental stages

Professional Skills

  • Comprehensive clinical assessment and screening
  • Case conceptualization and treatment planning
  • Law and ethics
  • HIPAA compliancy regulations and electronic medical record keeping system


The program typically requires a one year (four quarter) commitment and begins just before the fall quarter (September-October), with some exceptions due to program needs. Winter quarter is usually the next best time to start, although placement opportunities may not be as plentiful.  

Counselors are typically required to work at least 20-25 hours per week, which includes a minimum of 10 client hours, paperwork, supervision, and trainings. This schedule gears counselors who are in graduate programs toward graduating in a timely manner. However, this schedule can be negotiated for trainees and MFT associates who work and/or in other placements.

Students or associate therapists who are interested in more information regarding the clinical training provided through our CBCP can email [email protected] or submit an application below.

The philosophy and mission of the Community-Based Counseling Program (CBCP) is two-fold. First, we believe that the status of one’s mental health determines how successful one can be in school, in their career, and in their personal life. Therefore, we believe that quality mental health services should be easily accessible and affordable for all who require them. The CBCP provides these services to schools, colleges, and agencies in our community.

Additionally, we serve as a clinical training program for graduate students and associates learning to become mental health professionals. We pride ourselves on delivering a unique and comprehensive training experience while also inspiring and empowering mental health trainees to become actively involved in the community.

The majority of placements through the Community-Based Counseling Program (CBCP) are school-based. The CBCP currently provides services to the following districts and community agencies:

  • Diablo Unified School District
  • Pittsburg Unified School District
  • Contra Costa Community College District
  • Solano Community College District
  • Peralta Community College District
  • Family Justice Center

CBCP Services

CBCP counselors receive training that is designed specifically to orient them to the logistics of working in a school/college, as well as clinical issues that often arise within these populations.

Counseling services include:

  • individual sessions
  • group/workshop sessions
  • classroom and schoolyard observations
  • consultations/collateral meetings with parents, school staff, and/or other helping professionals

CBCP counselors work collaboratively with agency staff, parents, school administration, and faculty members to provide comprehensive therapeutic services tailored to the needs of the school/college/agency and students. Some of the needs CBCP counselors work with our partners to address are:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Low self-esteem
  • Grief and loss
  • Family crisis
  • Victims of child abuse
  • Social interaction problems
  • Classroom behavior problems
  • Academic underachievement

CBCP services can be delivered on-site, via telehealth, or a hybrid version of the two depending on client need and counselor availability.

Our Counselors

CBCP counselors are volunteer trainees and associates who are currently in or have graduated from one of the following graduate programs:

  • Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT)
  • Counseling Psychology (PCC)
  • Psychology Doctorate (PsyD)

Partnering institutions may also request psycho-educational workshops. Workshops may be delivered to students, staff, faculty, and/or parents/families of students. As always, we aim to tailor our services to the institution. The school/college may therefore select a topic that best suits their needs. Potential topics for workshops include, but are not limited to:

  • Test anxiety (students)
  • Social skills building (students)
  • Managing anxiety (agency members, students, parents, staff, faculty)
  • Time management (agency members, students, parents, staff, faculty)
  • Positive parenting (parents)
  • Supporting children with behavioral issues (staff, faculty, parents)

The CBCP partners and contracts with local schools, districts, and agencies to offer free mental health services to students and agency members. The total cost of services to the school/college or district is dependent upon the unit of services requested.

A unit of service is defined as one counselor providing six hours of counseling services within the partnering institution each week for the duration of the agreement. Each unit of counseling service is usually provided in one day each week. However, split days can sometimes be arranged to best accommodate schedules of the school and counselor.

The program cost is dependent on the number of units requested and the length of time in months the counselors are at the site each year.

The current cost per quarter unit of service:

  • $2,500 per quarter (3 months)
    • K-12s typically request 3 quarters
    • Community Colleges and Community Agencies typically request 4 quarters


If an additional workshop is beyond what their assigned CBCP counselor is able to provide within the units of service requested, an additional fee will be charged.

Workshops can be delivered via zoom.

Parent/Teacher/Staff/Agency Member Workshops:

  • $150 (covers 2-3 hours and up to 25 participants)
  • $250 (covers 2-3 hours and up to 50 participants)

Child/Adolescent Workshops:

  • $75 (covers 2-3 hours and up to 15 participants)
  • $175 (covers 2-3 hours and up to 30 participants)

Agencies or schools that are interested in more information regarding the counseling services provided through our CBCP can email [email protected].

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