Professional Counseling Residency Supervision Program

The Professional Counseling Residency Supervision Program at Stillwaters

Climbing StairsAre you a graduate of a Clinical Mental Health or Community Counseling Graduate Program and thinking about Counseling Residency as your next career step? If so, Jodi strongly encourages you to consider entering into the most challenging and rewarding experience of your developing professional career!  Counseling Residency– the place where Residents “earns their bones,” “find their niche”, and grow into true mental health professionals.   The Professional Counseling Residency Supervision Program at Stillwaters Counseling and Psychotherapy is designed specifically to prepare fully competent CLINICAL counselors and psychotherapists and launch their professional careers. It is an inspiring, challenging, and  rewarding method of Professional Counselor preparation and development created to set each Resident on the path toward becoming a true Master Clinician and facilitate their entry into private practice.   At the end of Residency, each Resident who fully applies himself or herself to professional development and growth in this process will be an excellent candidate for independent clinical practice in most any setting. At Stillwaters, Residency training is specifically designed to facilitate the development of advanced clinical skills required for competent, effective, ethical, and independent PRIVATE PRACTICE. Because independent private practice is the highest aspiration for Clinical Behavioral Health Clinicians, the supervision that Residents receive here makes it possible for the Resident to be effective and excel in any setting. However, before a Resident can jump into a highly lucrative career in a setting where he or she gets to keep all their proceeds, they must complete Residency.  The first step to this process is to find a truly competent Clinical Supervisor, and to find a truly Clinical Residency Site.  Jodi can help you with both.

 Steps For Successful Completion Of Your Counseling Residency In Virginia

I. Get “In the KNOW.”  

Read all of the following documents to learn how things work.

Regulations Governing Counseling In Virginia

Laws Governing Counseling In Virginia l

Guidance Document 115-7 – Supervised Experience Requirements


II. Choose an appropriate Residency Site

The Clinical Counseling Residency is a structured process that requires that the Residency Candidate to secure employment in a setting that provides an immersive clinical Residency experience.  The site must:

  • provide regular opportunities to engage in full spectrum clinical counseling to include Clinical Assessment, Diagnostics, Treatment Planning, Treatment Execution, Periodic Re-assessment, Relapse Prevention, and Outcome Measures.
  • serve  highly diverse client populations representative of a broad range of human variation (e.g. age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, culture, educational level, etc.).
  • provide clinical treatment interventions for a significant number of Clinical problems and Diagnoses represented by DSM V diagnostic categories and V-Codes.  
  • provide a training environment that permits the Resident to use a broad variety of techniques and methods based upon a broad sampling of reputable, vetted theorectical orientations.

All together, this means that the Residency site must provide a very broad training experience to prepare the Resident to be competent when treating most any type of patient, or diagnosis.   What won’t Work? Examples of positions that won’t be acceptable are:

  • Any position that treats only a single or limited number of  population(s) (e.g. children and families only,  adults only,  adolescents only seniors only, couples only, straight persons or LGBT persons only, a limited cultural groups only).
  • Any position that treats only a narrow diagnostic range of issues (e.g. ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, and Reactive attachment disorder as often seen in In Home settings, psychoses as seen in hospital settings, alcohol and drug dependence as seen in day treatment and hospitals).
  • Any position that limits your choice of treatment modalities and methods or prescribes a methodology (e.g. a private practice specializing in neurotherapy in which the Resident is exposed only to that and related treatments, an In Home agency that prescribes a uniform treatment method that is to be used with all patients),  or any site that restricts the Resident’s use of multiple methods and orientations.
  • Any position that does not permit the Resident to provide full spectrum counseling services (e.g. a site that assigns the Resident to  provide assessment of patients, but another clinician is assigned to perform all other treatment related duties; a site that assigns a patient to a Resident for Treatment after he/she has been assessed and diagnosed by another clinician. A site that  does not permit  the Resident to develop his/her own diagnoses and/or treatment plans, or does not  allow him/her to execute them).


  • Employement in a full spectrum counseling and psychotherapy private practice, ministry, or governmental mental health agency,  offering services to all populations regardless of age, gender, sexual orientaion, level of ability, cultural origin, race, socio-economic level, marital status, the ideal site under certain conditions. The practice must permit the Resident to treat people of all walks and phases of life and meet all criteria described above.
  • Employment at in a full spectrum counseling and psychotherapy private practice, ministry, or governmental mental health agency that offers comprehensive treatment services to persons experiencing all manner of problems in living including a broad  representations of DSM V diagnoses, relationship issues, school dysfuntion, career confusion, and more.
  • Employment at in a full spectrum counseling and psychotherapy private practice, ministry, or governmental mental health agency that permits the Resident’s choice of treatment method, theorectical orientation, and techniques and supports the Residents use of multile orientations to ensure that he or she achieves competence in a number of different treatment and theorectical styles.

How can I find a site like that? Finding a site that meets criteria is ofen a challenge.  Many people looking for a clinical residency site will accept a position with an In- Home or Day Treatment agency and will hope for the best.  This often leads to disappointment and frustration since most do not meet criteria for Residency. Private practices are often reluctant to hire Residents because they cannot bill insurance for their services.  So, Residency Candidates often feel frustrated by the process.

If you are in this position,  please do not despair!

Please CALL or TEXT  Jodi at 757/404-3747 to schedule a consultation.

She has successfully supervised Residents to licensure for over a decade.  She is well versed on the options available to Residency Candidates that can fulfill Board of Counseling requirements.


II. Choose an appropriate Residency Supervisor

There are many excellent supervisors in our community who can provide needed supervision for licensure.  However, there are two issues that each Candidate for Residency must take into account to avoid failing to achieve what is needed to be an effective clinician. First, not ever supervisor is a “good supervisor.” There are many excellent supervisors who genuinely dedicate themselves to developing highly competent clinicians. Unfortunately there are just as many who never received appropriate supervision in their own Residencies and do not understand what is needed to develop an excellent clinician. Second, your goal should not be “to become licensed.” Though attaining licensure is the final goal we hope to fulfill, it is not the sole purpose of Residency. An effective residency focuses specifically on developing Residents into truly competent clinicians who have the necessary knowledge, skill, and ability for independent practice and the clinical acumen to:

  • Competently and effectively treat any population regardless of age, race, religion, income, sexual orientation or other characteristic,
  • Thoroughly assess (using the specific, appropriate assessment instruments and psychological tests that relate to the patient’s presentation),
  • Accurately diagnose (using all applicable DSM V diagnostic categories and criteria),
  • Effectively develop a comprehensive treatment plan using diverse theoretical orientations, treatment modalities, treatment methods and techniques, (and the Resident’s broad knowledge and developing broad experience in treating all ages, walks of life, and types of issue) and understanding of all these factors to address all dynamics in the patient’s presentation,
  • Thoroughly implement and utilize the specific elements described in the treatment plan to facilitate the patient’s return to a premorbid level of function while alleviating suffering,
  • Conscientiously re- assessing the patient’s status, as required, and adjusting treatment goals and methods , as appropriate,
  • Befittingly introducing relapse prevention methodologies,
  • As part of a post treatment review and treatment efficacy assessment, honestly and accurately assessing the effectiveness of the entire process of treatment over the span of the Resident’s association with the patient and identify the strengths and areas for growth.
  • Competently incorporating these findings into changes to current practices to augment strengths and resolve deficits.
How can you know the difference between a “Good” and “not so great” Supervisor?

A good supervisor will . . . • Currently (or in the very recent past) provide clinical behavioral health assessment, diagnostic, and treatment services to their own diverse population of patients in their own full time clinical practice. • Currently (or in the very recent past) effectively treat diverse DSM V disorders and other problems in living. • Not serve as a full time faculty member of any university or other educational institution. • Have at least 5 years of active, full time clinical practice under his or her belt. (State law requires 2 years. However, a seasoned clinician will serve your purposes so much better than a newer one. Give yourself the advantage of experience). • Demonstrate clear understanding and knowledge of all laws, regulations, ethical codes, and elements of professional counselor identity necessary for successful completion of Residency and successful independent clinical practice. • Easily demonstrate the ability describe Regulations, laws, and ethical codes governing counseling in Virginia without referring to documents about same. • Follow and fulfill the word and spirit of the regulations, laws and ethical codes governing counseling in Virginia. • Make certain that Resident’ fulfills every requirement demanded by the Virginia Board of Counseling. • Never permit Residency shortcuts or report completion of requirements when such completion has not occurred. • Make certain that a supervision contract describing the responsibilities of all parties in executed by the supervisor and Resident. • Ensure that all parties comply with said contract. • Train the Resident in use of a broad array of psychological testing instruments developed specifically to help identify the presence of targeted disorders. • Require the Resident to become proficient at identifying, choosing, using, and scoring such instruments a part of the assessment process. • Train the Resident to use a diverse set of theoretical orientations, treatment modalities, treatment models, and techniques to address multiple and sundry diagnoses. • Require the Resident to recruit a diverse client base that includes children, adolescents, adults, and seniors so that the Resident becomes competent in the assessment and treatment of disorders as they present across the lifespan. • Require the Resident to treat a very broad variety of DSM V diagnoses and other problems in living to ensure that the Resident meets the requirement that he or she become competent as a generalist BEFORE attempting to narrow their clinical focus to any area of specialization. • Never fill out supervision paperwork in a way that indicates or could imply in any way that the Resident has completed requirements described in regulations, law, and ethical codes when in fact, he or she has not (e.g. a Resident who only has treated children, a Resident who only has treated Substance Abuse and Mood Disorders, a Resident only has applied CBT and DBT in work with patients, a Resident only has  used the intake process and Mental Status Exam in assessment processes). • Never attempt to “massage” an element of actual practice to make it appear to fit requirements for licensure to make it easier for the Resident to become licensed. • Seek to protect the profession of counseling from those who could do it harm through incompetent practice. • Report to the Board of Counseling any improprieties of violations of requirements as required by law. • Require the Resident to report to the Board of Counseling any improprieties of violations of requirements as required by law. • Provide direct oversight of the Resident’s clinical practice and provide effective supervision of same. • Use thoroughly researched and respected supervision modalities in his or her work with Residents. • Clearly identify and explain to the Resident the modalities he or she uses in their supervision efforts. • Demonstrate clear understanding of the consequences that can be visited upon the Resident if improprieties come to light during or after Residency and that licensure can be revoked under such circumstances. • Serve as a staunch advocate and positive, force in the professional lives of his or her Residents and foster competence and confidence. • Mentor new clinicians and help them move toward ethical and masterful practice AND GENUINELY ENJOY working with dedicated professionals as they travel the FINAL STEPS toward their ULTIMATE professional goal- Licensure!

Want to know more about the Professional Counseling Residency Supervision Program at Stillwaters Counseling and Psychotherapy?

Jodi has been privileged to be a part of the successful Residency and licensure journey for many, many other Residents.  Every single Resident who has served under her Supervision has been successful in their pursuit of licensure, and 99% of them are now working in their own Private Practices where they are the boss, get to keep all the money they make, and have autonomy. If you are seeking a Residency supervisor or just want an additional supervisor for a different form of exposure to clinical practice, Jodi would be pleased to meet with you to discuss the Residency program at  Stillwaters.  In addition, Jodi will  assist you in finding an authentically clinical Residency site and position that will prepare you to enter private practice immediately upon licensure, and provide guidance specific to your needs.  After a brief interview process, she will be able to advise you whether you are a good match for the focus and rigor of this program.  In the cases where there is a desire to reach the pinnacle of this profession (private practice), the answer is “yes!”  

How do you know if this program is for you?

Take a few minutes to look over the Goals of Residency as defined by the Stillwaters Program.

Do they intimidate or excite you?! 

Even if you feel a bit intimidated, NO WORRIES. 

Jodi walks alongside each Resident every step of the way until he or she no longer has a need for that level of assistance.   Likewise, YOU WILL BE SUCCESSFUL if you dedicate yourself to the process!

Take a look!

Goals of Residency

1. Facilitate the Resident’s achievement of Clinical Competence, Therapist Quality, and Therapist Competence in the delivery of effective and therapeutic Clinical Behavioral Health Services to a diverse client/patient base:

• in a manner that is sensitive to and effective with each client’s gender/sex role identity, culture, language, traditions, religious identification, sexual orientation, chronological age, stage of life, socioeconomic level, level of ability or disability, and other unique identifiers and characteristics. • presenting with a broad variety of DSM V Diagnoses and other problems in living. • using a broad variety of theoretical orientations and clinical techniques to abate or eradicate suffering. 2. Facilitate the Resident’s mastery and development of *CLINICAL COMPETENCE, **THERAPIST QUALITY, and ***THERAPIST COMPETENCE in all aspects of clinical documentation, communications, and related responsibilities. 3. Facilitate the Resident’s development of *CLINICAL COMPETENCE, **THERAPIST QUALITY, and ***THERAPIST COMPETENCE as a Diagnostician and Treatment Provider. 4. Facilitate the Resident’s adoption of his or her Professional Identity as a Professional Counselor and movement toward an ethical, mindful, ever evolving and progressive practice model that is consistent with prevailing ethical guidelines and standards of practice in the field. 5. Inculcate a requisite “lifelong learner” perspective in the Resident to ensure that his/her work is always based upon current thought, fresh perspectives, effective methods, and updated knowledge. 6. Promote active participation with professional associations and networks to advance clinical knowledge, improve skills, and gain exposure to different methodologies and perspectives of practice and advancements in our field. 7. Facilitate the development of ethical and effective methods of establishing and maintaining a successful private practice (if this is the Resident’s goal).


*Clinical Competence- the extent to which a therapist has the knowledge and skill required to deliver a treatment to the standard needed for it to achieve its expected effects. **Therapist Quality– the extent to which a therapist’s delivery of treatment was of sufficient quality for it to achieve its expected effect(s). ***Therapist Competence- the “the extent to which a therapist has the knowledge and skill required to deliver a treatment to the standard needed for it to achieve its expected effects.

 Does this sound like something that you’d like to do? 

Are you ready to embark on a truly life-changing journey to competence, meaning making, healing, and prosperity?

If so, please text or call Jodi at: 747/404-3747 Or email Jodi at:



At Stillwaters, we provides Residency Supervision services, only.  Though we are often instrumental in assisting Residency Candidates find  appropriate Residency sites, we do not provide site placement within this practice.