- Graduate School of Education and Psychology

To the Mental Health Services Act
Marriage and Family Therapy Stipend Program
Orange County 2012-2013
Orange County Coordinator of the MHSA MFT
Stipend Program
Co-chair, Orange County MFT Consortium
Pepperdine University Adjunct Faculty
Information about the Mental Health Services
Act Marriage and Family Therapy Stipend
Program – Orange County.
1. Foundational information about
California’s Mental Health Services Act (MHSA)
2. Information about Public and Private MFT
Employment Opportunities.
3. Information about the MHSA MFT State
Stipend Program.
4. Questions and Answers
Late 1990s – there was a recognition by the
California State Department of Mental Health
and some members of the state legislature
that additional resources were needed in
order to improve mental health delivery and
to address the complexity of mental health
diversity issues among the citizens of
California. There was unfinished legislation
in the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act of 1967 re:
mental health delivery of care.
2004 – Proposition 63 was placed on the
November ballot and was passed by the
Proposition 63 directed the California
Legislature to draft laws affecting the delivery
of mental health services in the public sector.
Proposition 63 placed an additional income
tax on California residents who earn $1
million or more annually, with the tax monies
going directly to fund public mental health
The tax monies go to programs that treat:
◦ Substance abuse
◦ Children and Adolescents
◦ Senior Citizens
◦ The Homeless
The projected amount of taxes collected in
any given year for MHSA programs is about
The monies are earmarked exclusively for
MHSA programs and cannot be shifted to
other types of state expenditures.
2007 BBS Survey:
◦ 64,000 MFTs and MFT interns were surveyed.
◦ 25,909 responses = 40.48% of those surveyed.
◦ Of the 25,909 responses 39.49% of MFTs and MFT
Interns reported working primarily in private
◦ 52.47% MFTs and MFT Interns reported working
primarily in publicly funded sites.
For that 52.47% working in non-private practice
mental health settings:
19.24% worked in non-profit sites
13.02% worked in county or municipal agencies
9.36% worked in licensed health care facilities
5.19% worked in school settings
3.66% worked for state or federal agencies
2.00 % worked for colleges or universities
1. County Mental Health – both county-operated
programs and county-contracted programs.
2. Child Protective Services
3. Adult Protective Services
4. Foster Family Services
5. Drug and Alcohol Programs
6. Judicial System
7. Community Counseling Centers
8. Educational System
9. State-funded Mental Health programs
Community Treatment Settings
Medical Necessity:
1. Disability with a covered diagnosis
2. Role impairments in major life areas
3. Services will benefit the client
Psycho-social-cultural assessment
Treatment team approach
Collaboration with community service agencies
Multiple treatment approaches
Working with diverse clientele
“Marriage and Family Therapists are clinicians
who utilize systemic and/or relational
interventions to provide mental health serices
including assessment, treatment and referral
for individuals, families and children in
multiple systems.”
Complete service intakes
Conduct bio-psychosocial assessments
Provide mental health treatment
Provide case management
Provide crisis intervention services
Coordinate client care
Provide education
Perform administrative functions
Promote professional development
Providing a multi-generational lens in
assessment and diagnosis
Engaging with the various sub-units in the
Improving relationships and raising levels of
interpersonal functioning and differentiation
Providing a sense of hope and empowerment
Promoting integration of self, relationships
and community
Navigating in social and educational systems
National Mental Health Policy has promoted the
use of family assessment and therapy in child
and adolescent mental health services and has
recommended that systemic principles be
incorporated in mental health delivery.
Adapting and applying systemic principles and
theories are a major emphasis in the training of
marriage and family therapists. MFTs integrate
these concepts and develop skill in systemic case
conceptualizations and context-focused
Steady accumulation of hours for licensure.
Acquisition of specialized training, clinical
practice and therapeutic orientations leading to
an increase in knowledge and skills in the
treatment of certain diagnoses and specific
Clinical trainings can be counted towards interns’
3,000 hours
Administrative and Clinical Supervision
The monetary compensation is competitive with
paid medical and dental benefits, paid vacation
and holiday leave.
MHSA Educational Stipends for MFT graduate
students - $18,500 for 1 year of service
Loan Repayment Program for MFT Interns and
Licensed MFTs - $15,000 for 2 years of
Fellowships for doctoral students in MFT $20,000 for 2 years of service.
The MHSA MFT State Stipend Program was
created when a contract was submitted but
the regional MFT consortia to the California
State Department of Mental Health. Approval
came in August, 2009.
We are now in the third year of providing
educational stipends to MFT interns across
the state of California
There are a total of 10 stipends awarded each
academic year.
Each stipend if for $18,500.00
Applicants must have attended or be
attending a MFT school that is an active
participant in a regional MFT Consortium in
Applicants for the 2012/2013 MFT State
Stipend Program must graduate from their
MFT between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013.
If you have not yet graduated from your
program you must be in good academic
standing (meaning that you have met all
program requirements to date and are
projected to graduate on schedule).
Stipends are not loans, they are similar to
They are intended to assist recipients in
repaying their graduate school expenses.
Applicants agree to work in Orange County
for a minimum of 12 months in an Orange
County Department of Behavioral Health
Services position or for an Orange Countycontracted agency.
Positions may be paid employment positions
or unpaid volunteer positions.
If a recipient finds paid employment the
stipend money is in addition to their regular
Applicants should be able to clearly express
why they are interested in working in public
mental health and to articulate how their
practicum or other work or personal
experience(s) has prepared them to work in
public mental health.
Orange County has very large populations of
Farsi, Spanish and Vietnamese-speaking
Orange County also has sizeable populations
who speak Arabic, Korean, and Tagalog.
There are many homeless persons as well.
There is a great need for mental health
practitioners for these populations,
particularly those who communicate in
Spanish, Vietnamese and American Sign
Information about the MHSA MFT Stipend
Program 2012/2013 will be available in midAugust, 2012 on-line at www.pgi.edu.
Applications for the 2012/2013 year will be
available on September 5, 2012 also at
Check the application guide (also on
www.pgi.edu) available September 5, 2012
for clear information about how to apply.
Incomplete applications will not be accepted.
Please do take the time to check your
applications for omissions and/or
Applicants must be able to work legally in the
United States in order to qualify to receive a
Applicants must contact their MFT State
Stipend Program school representative to
inform their representative that they are
applying to the program and to ask the
representative to fill out an evaluation form
for the applicant to be sent to by the
representative to Phillips Graduate Institute.
A list of school representatives is located on
the Phillips Graduate Institute website at
A bit of good advice:
Do not wait until the deadline to submit your
application. Should you wait until the deadline
and are missing something from your application
your application will be disqualified.
Check your application materials carefully, as
your ability to write clearly and completely with
good spelling and grammar reflects your
professionalism. So autograph your application
with excellence!
Should you have any questions I may be reached at:
[email protected]
But please do check the application and information guide first before contacting
me as it is very likely the information will be printed there.
Applications will be available on September 5 at www.pgi.edu
And now, finally, your questions!

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