Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Public Defender Service - Mental Health Division

The Mental Health Division of the Public Defender Service for D.C. offers an investigative and social work internship to undergraduate psychology student. The building is accessible by the metro and they are routinely looking for undergraduate interns.

A social work intern is needed to assist the social workers, who represents persons undergoing involuntary civil and criminal commitment, primarily to Saint Elizabeth's Hospital. The duties for the social work internship include:
  • Case management 
  • Researching and evaluating community resources for client with special needs
  • Locating alternative placement for clients
  • Conducing on-site evaluations of court-ordered nursing home clients
  • Assessing appropriateness of treatment programs
  • Serving as an advocate to ensure clients' rights are protected
  • Negotiating with hospital staff and community service providers to secure and improve quality of clients' care
  • Investigating social issues affecting clients that arise from individual cases
Minimum 3 day a week requirement. Summer internships are full time. 

To apply, send a cover letter, resume, writing sample and two references by email to   For more information please feel free to visit our website at or call Carolyn Slenska (202) 824-2860.

An investigator intern assist attorneys in preparing cases for court and administrative hearings. Once assigned a client, the intern and attorney will the fist contact with the client, and the intern will conduct follow up visits independently. Other duties include:

  • Background interview with client which take place on the locked wards of the institution. 
  • Interviewing process can be difficult as clients are highly suspicious and some may be actively hallucinating and delusional as well as heavily medicated. 
  • Interviews treating psychiatrists of the client and hospital staff
  • Submit all information obtained in interviews to the attorneys in written reports
  • Responsible for obtaining medical and legal documental and abstracting pertinent information
  • Meet with attorneys on a daily basis to discuss legal theories, possible testimonies from witnesses and other legal questions.
  • May occasionally serve court subpoenas
  • Observe and assist attorneys at numerous court and administrative hearings
  • Occasionally, interns may testify at these hearings
Minimum 4 day a week requirement. Does take summer internships as well

All interested applicants must submit a resume, cover letter and letters from or other names and phone numbers of at least 2 references: one from a recent employer and one from a professor at the student's present academic institution. Please sent applications as   For more information please call Carolyn Slenska (202) 824-2860

No comments:

Post a Comment