- Job title: Psychology Intern for Complex Care and Dementia
- Company: Cornwall Foundation Trust (NHS)
During my placement I worked as a Psychology Intern in the Cornwall Foundation Trust Complex Care and Dementia Service. During this time, I worked on Cornwall’s Specialist Dementia Ward, which offers assessment and treatment of organic mental health problems with dementia. I also worked within the Dementia Liaison Community Team, which offers assessment to people living with dementia or complex mental health needs when they are in a hospital or a care home.
Prior to my placement, I had a basic understanding of the field but very little clinical knowledge. I have discovered that working in this profession can be fast paced and emotionally challenging, but also extremely rewarding. Being challenged in this environment has helped me to grow enormously as a student, but also to develop some of the core skills necessary as a clinician. I have gained invaluable knowledge, such as how to communicate with service users in various stages of dementia and with varying needs, managing my own caseload, developing an understanding of the role of clinical supervision and carrying out service evaluations.
In each of these situations, I have been able to put the academic knowledge gained at university in to practice in a clinical environment, where my actions have real implications for patients and staff. Alongside my academic and clinical development, I have gained skills in self-reflection through bi-weekly clinical supervision with a trained Clinical Psychologist. The learning I have taken from these experiences is also transferrable to many other clinical settings. I have also sought the opportunity to shadow Clinical Psychologists in various other settings, including Adult Mental Health, Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Eating Disorders, giving me a well-rounded understanding of the profession.
Overall, I would thoroughly recommend the Year in Industry experience. I have learned how to utilise the skills gained at University in a clinical setting, and have developed a thorough understanding of the field of Clinical Psychology. I have learned that I am more capable than I had ever believed during my first two years as a Psychology student, and this has allowed my confidence to grow hugely.