The professional school's training program is an integral part of
its public service commitment. As soon as students possess the
necessary psychological service skills, they provide these services
under supervision in applied settings.
The Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology's (GSAPP)
training programs have extensive links to the community. Many of these
links are channeled through the school's Center for Applied Psychology,
the "psychological service center" of GSAPP.
An ongoing project at the
local level is the Rutgers/Somerset Counseling Project, a family- and
community-based intervention and prevention research program that
reaches young people and their families at serious risk. It was begun
by Drs. Brenna Bry and Nancy Boyd-Franklin in 1993 in conjunction with
a local Baptist church and intermediate and high school principals. The
project has three main service components: (1) school-based student
counseling, (2) home-based family therapy, and (3) school-based
aggression prevention groups. It provides an excellent opportunity for
GSAPP students to learn family therapy and community psychology
interventions. Approximately eight to 10 students have participated in the
program each year since its inception.
The Rutgers Safe and Drug
Free Schools and Communities Project (Title IV, in cooperation with the NJ Department of Education), and the Center for Social and Character
Development are examples
of ongoing innovative public services offered through the Center for
Applied Psychology. Additionally, practicum placements involve dozens of school
districts, specialized schools, community mental health centers, hospitals,
hospice programs, and urban programs for youths and families.