Community Partnerships

The CPTP is well-integrated in the surrounding community, and many clinical and research activities occur in community settings.  Our use of community practicum placements allows access to a broad range of clinical populations and increases the external validity of research and clinical training.  Our model of training recognizes that individuals and their behavior cannot be understood without consideration of the context in which they find themselves. Below are examples of our community-based practicum sites.

Disability Rights Nebraska

Disability Rights Nebraska (DRN) is the protection and advocacy agency for the state of Nebraska. The extern primarily engages in a single project under the supervision of Eric Evans, Ph.D., the C.O.O. of DRN. The primary project is a research oriented project focused on some area of serious mental illness, public policy, mental health treatment, and/or consumer advocacy, and is typically tailored to impact Nebraska's mental health system. Projects often incorporate some aspect of consumer outreach. 

Supervisor: Eric Evans, Ph.D.

Psychological Consultation Center: Telehealth Clinic

The Psychological Consultation Center (PCC) Telehealth Clinic in consultation with the Nebraska AIDS Project, provides services for individuals across Nebraska who live with HIV/AIDS. The population served consists of many who identify as LGBT, have a history of substance abuse, or live in rural areas but includes individuals from all walks of life. Treatment is primarily delivered via telehealth using the VSEE system to clients’ homes on their computers, tablets, or even phones.  Externs gain expertise in working with those affected by HIV/AIDS, telehealth intervention, and general therapy skills with cases of varying complexity.  

Supervisor: Debra A. Hope, Ph.D.

Teach a Kid to Fish

Teach a Kid to Fish is a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing and reducing childhood obesity in Lincoln through the promotion of healthy eating and physical activity. The extern is responsible for coordinating the 5-4-3-2-1 Go!® program, which focuses on simple messages for encouraging children to lead healthy lifestyles.  As project coordinator, responsibilities include collecting and analyzing pre- and post-surveys, meeting with daycare center directors, and leading training sessions for teachers to ensure the correct implementation of the program.

Supervisor: Timothy Nelson, Ph.D.


This placement involves providing family-based behavioral health services within the Lincoln HEROES clinic, which is a satellite clinic of Children’s Hospital Omaha focusing on pediatric obesity treatment. Specifically, the extern: (1) participates in clinic-based assessments of psychosocial functioning and health behaviors; (2) delivers the behavioral component of the pediatric obesity intervention and; (3) consults with the multidisciplinary treatment team on case conceptualization and treatment planning. 

Supervisors: Peg Evans, Ph.D. and Timothy Nelson, Ph.D.

Rite of Passage Uta Halee Academy

The Rite of Passage Uta Halee Academy is a residential setting for adolescent females with a variety of behavioral and emotional issues. The extern’s time is spent primarily conducting assessments for clients at admission and developing treatment recommendations based on assessment results. In addition to assessment services, the extern has opportunities to provide consultation with clinical and education staff and as time permits, co-facilitate treatment groups addressing common issues such as trauma, substance abuse, and emotion regulation.

Supervisor: Lorena Bradley, Ph.D.

Lincoln Regional Center: Forensic Mental Health Services

The Lincoln Regional Center Forensic Mental Health Services (LRC-FMHS) placement includes assessment and treatment of male and female patients deemed not competent to stand trial or Not Responsible by Reason of Insanity (NRRI).  The LRC-FMHS extern provides individual competency restoration and risk management treatments, as well as violence and suicide risk assessments for NRRI annual reviews and competency to stand trial assessments for the court.  All efforts are conducted as part of a unique multidisciplinary treatment team.

Supervisor: Jennifer Cimpl-Bohn, Ph.D.

Lincoln Regional Center: Adult Residential Sex Offender Services

The Lincoln Regional Center serves convicted sex offenders serving sentences through the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services and individuals who have been committed under an inpatient mental health board order for sex offender treatment.  The extern’s primary responsibilities are to: (a) conduct screens for elopement, suicide, and violence risk for newly admitted patients; (b) conduct psychological evaluations, including sexual offense risk assessments; (c) write integrated reports; and (d) facilitate individual and group therapy.

Supervisor: Shannon Black, Ph.D.

Alexis Verzal Children's Rehabilitation Hospital

The Alexis Verzal Children’s Rehabilitation Hospital is a 14-bed unit located within Madonna’s larger rehabilitation hospital. Students placed on the pediatric rehabilitation unit work with patients aged 0-19 years who are undergoing rehabilitation for various medical reasons. Extern activities involve brief bedside therapy; individual, group, and family therapy; behavioral management (e.g., sleep); medical team consultation and liaison; participation in team, family, and school meetings; and outpatient consultation with various clinics.

Supervisor: Paula Ray, Psy.D.

Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital: Traumatic Brain Injury Inpatient Unit

Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital is a CARF-accredited hospital that provides pediatric and adult rehabilitation services. The extern works with individuals who have experienced moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries and who are undergoing acute rehabilitation. The placement emphasizes neuropsychological assessment (typically bedside cognitive assessment), interdisciplinary treatment team consultation on behavioral issues, and brief psychotherapeutic interventions for patients and families. The student also facilitates a psychoeducation group on traumatic brain injury for inpatients and their family members.

Supervisors: Travis Groft, Ph.D. and Ryan Ernst, Psy.D.

State Probation: Specialized Substance Abuse Supervision Unit 

The Specialized Substance Abuse Supervision (SSAS) unit of state probation serves individuals with current felony drug charges deemed at a high risk to recidivate. As the primary psychological consultant for the SSAS unit, the extern provides individual psychotherapy, psychological assessments, and group-based anger management for individuals with a range of co-existing mental health problems. Clients may include both men and women of varying ages who typically represent diverse ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds. 

Supervisor: Dennis McChargue, Ph.D.

Houses of Hope

Houses of Hope consist of three halfway houses serving homeless men with substance dependence problems. The primary responsibility of the extern is to provide supportive treatment modalities, conduct psychodiagnostic assessment, and consult with staff regarding problematic behaviors, treatment modifications, and policy issues. We are also in the process of evaluating the efficacy of the HOH treatment and have implemented an initial psychological screen. The extern is responsible for reviewing screens to identify high risk individuals.

Supervisor: Dennis McChargue, Ph.D.


Whitehall, a subunit of the Lincoln Regional Center, is a residential sex-offense-specific treatment center for adolescent male offenders. The Whitehall extern functions as a full member of the multidisciplinary treatment team and participates in weekly treatment planning meetings. The extern completes a flexible assessment battery with each youth referred to Whitehall. Externs also lead CBT-based groups on a weekly basis and provide training and consultation to Master’s level therapists regarding client risk, psychopathology, and treatment.

Supervisor: Dan Ullman, Ph.D.           

Nebraska State Penitentiary

The Nebraska State Penitentiary (NSP) houses male inmates ranging from minimum to maximum security. Externs conduct psychological evaluations and risk assessments of inmates being considered for parole or community promotions. Externs also co-facilitate group-based interventions for inmates with a history of violent and sexual offending as well as anger management problems. Additional opportunities include individual therapy, crisis response, psychiatric rounds, and program evaluation and development.  

Supervisor: Elizabeth Geiger, Ph.D.

OMNI Eating Disorders Clinic

The OMNI Eating Disorders Clinic (EDC) located in Omaha is a comprehensive, individualized evaluation and treatment program for adolescents and adults diagnosed with a broad spectrum of eating disorders and comorbid conditions. A post-masters extern serves as a member of a multidisciplinary treatment team and applies skillsets in program development, treatment planning, pre- and post-treatment assessment, consultation, and collaboration with collateral agencies at this community-based treatment clinic. 

Supervisor: William Spaulding, Ph.D.

OMNI Community Service Programs

Two extern positions cover three interrelated community service programs for high-need children, adolescents, and families, provided by OMNI.  The two externs on these placements serve as therapists on the respective treatment teams. 

Supervisor: William Spaulding, Ph.D.

  • Home Based Therapy (HBT): HBT typically includes individual or family sessions with children with behavioral issues, although adult clients may also be seen. Common diagnoses include Oppositional Defiant Disorder, ADHD, Conduct Disorder, Depression, and Autism. Other common treatment issues include truancy and substance abuse.
  • Intensive Family Preservation (IFP): IFP is a home-based service that includes crisis and intensive case management to families. The IFP team will often help families with issues as noncompliance, aggression, truancy, and/or substance abuse. 
  • Intensive Treatment Mobility Services (ITMS): ITMS is primarily focused on individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities (e.g., autism spectrum disorders and down syndrome). Externs consult with primary care providers to help in alleviating problematic behaviors in the residence and community setting. 

OMNI Therapeutic Group Home

OMNI Therapeutic Group Home, Seward Family Support Center is a group living facility for youth 14-19 years of age who require intensive community based treatments. This facility aims to serve a wide variety of youth presenting with disorders of mood as well as other co-occurring disorders. As a member of a multidisciplinary treatment team, the extern provides services including treatment planning, individual, group, and family therapy, pre-treatment assessment, and post-physical intervention assessment. 

Supervisor: William Spaulding, Ph.D.

Early Head Start/Head Start

As Social Emotional Learning Consultants for Early Head Start and Head Start programs, graduate students collaborate with home visitors to improve psychological services for low-income families in Lincoln. Externs complete social, emotional, and behavioral health screenings for all families and conduct risk assessments for families identified to have high needs. They provide in-home therapy (e.g., behavioral management training) for parents and children, provide monthly trainings to Head Start personnel, and facilitate parent workshops.

Supervisors: David Hansen, Ph.D. and Mary Fran Flood, Ph.D.

Project Safe

As Project SAFE therapists, externs collaborate with the Child Advocacy Center (CAC) to provide brief individual, family, and group therapy for children who have been interviewed at the CAC due to sexual abuse allegations and their non-offending family members. As the Project SAFE Clinical Coordinators, two masters-level externs coordinate referrals from the CAC, collaborate with CAC staff, and schedule crisis intervention, brief family therapy, or group participation for referred families. The Coordinators also provide services in satellite offices in rural Nebraska counties.

Supervisors: David Hansen, Ph.D. and Mary Fran Flood, Ph.D.