MIRECC / CoE
VA Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Illness Research and Treatment
VA Advanced Postdoctoral Fellowship Program
Stephanie Gamble, Ph.D., Director of Fellowship Training
in Veteran Mental Health and Suicide
Todd M. Bishop, Ph.D., Associate Director of Fellowship Training
Tracy Dilcher, Fellowship Training Coordinator
The VISN 2 Center of Excellence for Suicide Prevention (CoE) is home to a postdoctoral fellowship that is part of VA's Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Illness Research and Treatment. Sponsored by the VA Office of Academic Affairs, our two-year program is designed to provide psychologists, physicians and associated health professionals with the experience necessary to become leaders and innovators in suicide prevention research among Veterans. To accomplish this we combine the rich research and education resources of the CoE and the affiliated University of Rochester Department of Psychiatry (URMC Psychiatry) with the unique clinical and crisis response programs at the Canandaigua VA Medical Center (CVAMC).
Consistent with the strategic mission of our Center, the fellowship program puts primary emphasis on public health approaches to suicide prevention in a vibrant interdisciplinary setting that fosters rich and creative collaborations with investigators and clinical supervisors from the fields of psychology, psychiatry, medicine, nursing, social work, epidemiology, and health services. We emphasize the development of advanced general clinical competencies and also offer additional training for the development of specific skills with Veteran populations at elevated risk for suicide, including but not limited to: aging Veterans; Veterans with depression, PTSD or other mental health challenges; and Veterans with substance use disorders or comorbid conditions. In addition, fellows have opportunities to work with at-risk Veterans facing health challenges such as chronic pain, sleep disorders and other comorbid medical conditions.
Over the course of the two-year program, fellows dedicate approximately 75% of their effort to clinical research and 25% to direct patient care and clinical consultation. A minimum of four hours of weekly research and clinical supervision is provided in individual and group formats. Per VA policy, trainees complete 2,080 hours of training during each year of the fellowship. In some instances, the program may be extended for a third year to further develop advanced competencies in clinical research.