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The Grady NIA Project Practicum Placement

Title of practicum placement/position:  The Grady Nia Project – Student clinician

Number of available placements per semester:  6

Primary Duties: Individual therapy, co-leading experimental, support, process and skills-based groups, screenings, intake/study assessments, crisis management, testing,  participant recruitment, clinical-research, grant/manuscript preparation, weekly team meeting, presentations and fund raising activities (among other duties)

Description of Site: The Grady Nia Project was initially developed in the early 1990’s as a research intervention project for survivors of intimate partner violence (IPV) and suicide attempters. Since that time it has grown considerably and now not only conducts research examining the impact of modified ESTs (including mindfulness, compassion & meditation programs and manualized, skills-based groups) developed for use with survivors of IPV and/or suicide, but also provides a variety of clinical psychological services, free of charge, to almost anyone who may benefit from these services.

Setting – The Grady Nia Project is a part of Emory University Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and is located on the 13th floor of Grady Memorial Hospital. This is a large, urban hospital located in downtown Atlanta that caters primarily to underserved and uninsured indigent populations.

Participants – Study participants are comprised of primarily low-income, abused (IPV) and suicidal, African American women and suicidal African American men between the ages of 18-64. However, the Nia Project offers a number of (non-study related) services to women and men of all races. Most participants have significant trauma histories, comorbid psychiatric diagnoses - including severe and persistent mental illness, and are currently experiencing, or have previously experienced, suicidal and/or homicidal ideation/intent or have made suicide attempts. Many participants are also currently, or have at one time been, homeless, unemployed, uninsured and receiving government assistance.

Prerequisites: At the anticipated start of the practicum, all applicants MUST be at least 2nd year graduate students or above, in a psychology or behavioral/health science based program. Courses must have been completed in therapy and/or intervention and psychopathology. Prior individual therapy experience with multiple and/or long-term patient(s) is required (references may be requested). Also, prior work experience with high risk populations is preferred - but not required.

Approved Institutions: Applicants are accepted for practicum from certain programs at the following approved institutions only: Emory University, Georgia State University, University of Georgia, Argosy University, Mercer University, Fielding University, Clark Atlanta University, Brenau University, Walden University & Liberty University – however, we DO NOT accept online students from any institution. 

Length of Commitment & Application Deadlines (semesters): This site offers year round practicum opportunities (Fall, Spring and Summer semesters). A minimum commitment of 2 CONSECUTIVE semesters is strongly preferred. Due to a lengthy on-boarding/orientation process required of all trainees by Grady Hospital, it is vital that if considering applying for Nia practicum, that Dr. Dunn be contacted regarding the Nia application process by the following times: In early April for Summer semester (June start); early June for Fall semester (August start) and early November for Spring semester (January Start)

Application Process: All practicum applicants will be required to complete a Grady Nia Project application form (email to request application) and submit the completed application along with an updated CV to Sarah E. Dunn, PhD, ABPP at If the application is accepted, applicants will also then be required to interview (either in person or over the phone) with Dr. Dunn.

Primary Faculty Member: Sarah E. Dunn, PhD, ABPP (Nia Clinical Director): 404-771-6306,

Secondary Faculty Member (contact only if cannot reach Dr. Dunn):  Nadine Kaslow, PhD, ABPP (Nia PI): 404-616-4757,