Pathways to Psych Careers

Summer Program and Mentorship Experiences

psychology internship, psychiatry internship, mental health internship

Many groups have been underrepresented in the mental health field - particularly the fields of psychology and psychiatry - for too long. The Pathways to Psych Careers Program aims to directly address these gaps through the creation of a paid, structured summer program that will provide hands-on training and career guidance for individuals from groups traditionally underrepresented in medicine who are planning to pursue a career in psychology or psychiatry.

The Pathways to Psych Careers Program is designed for undergraduate students with a basic understanding of psychology and/or the mental health field who are responsible self-starters that thrive in collaborative environments. Throughout the program, mentees will have the opportunity to enhance their analytical skills under the guidance of a team of expert researchers and clinicians. 

Please expand the links below to learn more about the full program details, including how to apply. For questions, please email

Apply Now. 

Please note, all applicants must be 18 years old in order to apply to this program.


Program Dates

The summer program will last 9 weeks, from June 3rd, 2024 to August 9th, 2024.

The internship will begin with an orientation session, including a “Mental Health Careers Panel” during the week of June 3, 2024, that will introduce students to various paths that psychiatry and psychology faculty at Weill Cornell Medicine have taken in shaping their careers. The internship will conclude with participation and presentation in an academic conference during the first week of August.

"Following completion of the summer internship, all students will participate in ongoing mentorship over the course of one year (Fall 2024 through Spring 2025) geared toward preparing each student to enroll in a graduate program in mental health (described further below under “Career Development.”).


Program Location

The program will be mostly in person with some elements being done remotely if desired. Students will contribute to research and shadow in clinical settings at the NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center on Manhattan’s Upper East Side and NewYork-Presbyterian Westchester Behavioral Health (WBH) in White Plains, NY.  Transportation will be provided to from the Manhattan campus to WBH.


Program Stipend

Each student participating in this program will receive a stipend of $4,000 for participation in this program, as well as reimbursement of any travel expenses related to commuting to and from any of the NewYork-Presbyterian or Weill Cornell Medicine campuses.


Research Experience

Students will have rotations in clinical research and basic science laboratories at Weill Cornell Medicine under the supervision of an experienced faculty member.  They will have an opportunity to engage in activities in support of research including data collection (i.e. distributing surveys), data entry and quality reviews, research participant recruitment, and scientific manuscript preparation. Examples of potential areas of research include but are not limited to:

  • Exploring efficacy of digital therapeutics in psychotherapy
  • The development of psychosocial interventions for middle-aged and older adults with depression, suicidal ideation, chronic pain, or cognitive impairment
  • Exploring strategies for addressing the psychological barriers and stigma that deter adults from utilizing mental health care

Students’ research activities will culminate in the production of a poster presentation, which will be presented at an academic conference hosted by Weill Cornell Medicine during the final week of the program.

Clinical Observership

Students will have an opportunity to observe clinical work by  shadowing in selected clinical environments across the inpatient and outpatient settings.


Near the conclusion of the internship, students will present their poster during an end-of-summer Academic Conference. Students will present their work as first author on their poster, with their primary mentor as the final author.

Seminar Series

Students will have the opportunity to attend lectures and didactic seminars, focusing on different areas of mental health treatment, such as various applications of cognitive behavioral therapy.

Career Development

Students will engage in structured career mentorship during the summer program, and ongoing mentorship for one year following completion of the summer program. All students selected for this program will participate in mentorship with faculty members at Weill Cornell Medicine for the duration of that year. Mentorship will center around strengthening readiness and competitiveness for a higher education program in mental health – i.e., enrolling in a doctoral program in Psychology, or enrolling in medical school to pursue a specialization in psychiatry. Specifically, students will receive guidance with preparing for entrance exams, drafting personal statements, strengthening one’s application, networking, and other relevant topics.

Program Eligibility

Applicants must be 18 years of age and older at the time of the application.

Individuals must also belong to one or more of the groups designated by the National Science Foundation as underrepresented in health-related sciences as follows:

  • Black or African American
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • American Indian or Alaska Native
  • Native Hawaiian
  • Other Pacific Islander


Application Materials

Please submit all application materials through our application form. If you have any questions, please contact us at Do not respond to any emails that are sent from an email address not including "" 

Personal Statement

Include a personal statement indicating why you would like to participate in the program and describe your interests related to a career in mental health. Please include any relevant previous research or professional experiences. Essays should be limited to 1500 words.

Transcript/Academic Record

Please upload an unofficial transcript(s) as part of your application. Transcripts for every college or university you have attended must be submitted.

Letter of Recommendation

Please upload 1-2 letters of recommendation as part of this application.

It is recommended that at least one letter of recommendation be from:  1) A research faculty member from a lab you have worked in or who is familiar with your research work. 2) A letter of recommendation from a science faculty instructor whom you have engaged in coursework with, or 3. A program director such as one from any of the following programs: MARC, RISE, McNair, etc.

Your letter(s) of recommendation should comment on your motivation and readiness to begin your pursuit of a career in mental health.


Please upload the most up to date version of your resume or CV. You can also find a resume template here

Proof of Citizenship

Please upload one of the following as proof of US Citizenship or permanent resident visa status:

          1) U.S. Citizenship: A copy of your birth certificate or US Passport


          2) Permanent Resident Visa: A copy of your Permanent Resident Visa card.

Privacy Notice: As part of this application, we recognize that you are disclosing private and personal information. Please note that all application materials will only be viewed by leadership of this program to determine acceptance into the program, and that no private information will be shared elsewhere.

Apply Here by February 16, 2024

All applications are to be submitted by February 16, 2024. Applications submitted following this deadline will not be reviewed or considered.

Submit your application here.

Program Faculty

Program Leadership

justin chen and stephanie cherestal

From left to right.

Justin Chen, M.D., M.P.H., Vice Chair for Health Justice and Vice Chair for Ambulatory Services

Stephanie Cherestal, Ph.D., Director, Psychiatry Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Council Assistant Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry

Planning Committee


From left to right.

Jessica Hartman, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology in Clinical Psychiatry

Dora Kanellopoulos, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology in Clinical Psychiatry

Megan Mendoza, M.D., Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychiatry

Heather Neuhs, L.C.S.W., Director of Ambulatory Services, Payne Whitney Clinic, NewYork-Presbyterian

Tacina Outram, M.D., Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychiatry

Research Mentors for Summer 2023

Students accepted into the program will be paired with one of the following mentors that they will engage in research with during the summer program.

psychiatry mentors

From left to right.

Jennifer Bress, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry
Dimitri Kiosses, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry
Conor Liston, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry, Professor of Neuology
JoAnne Sirey, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry
Nili Solomonov, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry

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