Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Program Internship

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is an evidenced-based treatment designed by Marsha Linehan, PhD for individuals with severe emotion dysregulation, suicidal and self-harm thoughts and actions, and other behaviors that get in the way of having a life worth living. We serve clients with multiple diagnoses including and not limited to: borderline personality disorder, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, addictions, eating disorders and PTSD; with whom other treatments have not been effective. Clients are seen in weekly 1:1 DBT therapy and weekly 2-hour DBT skills training for a period of one year for adults and 6 months for adolescents and their parent(s)/guardian. Clients come from varied backgrounds, socioeconomic status, and life circumstances.

Nystrom & Associates has 15 DBT sites across the state of Minnesota which practice DBT in adherence to the Linehan model. Our teams, who train interns, have team leads whom have completed a thorough national certification process and are DBT-Linehan Board of Certification, Certified Clinicians. Nystrom & Associates prides itself on excellence in training staff and interns in evidenced based delivery of DBT.

In addition to weekly 1:1 DBT supervision, interns will enter into a DBT cohort curriculum-based program with other interns and staff. In the first two months, interns will attend a DBT Two Half-Day Hands-On training for new staff. In the first semester, interns will meet weekly for 1 hour of DBT Cohort foundation training with DBT Trainer and Consultant, Donna Pattie, MSW, LICSW. Beginning in the second semester and through internship completion, interns will meet two times monthly for 1 hour with the DBT cohort curriculum-based program. Additional expert Linehan Board of Certification, Certified Clinicians providing training during cohort times include: Sarah Gross, MSW, LICSW, Executive DBT Program Director; Rebecca Sanders Lindquist, MA, Associate DBT Program Director, LPCC; and Kathy Spiry, MSW, LICSW, Associate DBT Program Director. DBT clinical team and intern supervisor Rebecca Neeck, MSW, LICSW will assist with training, program development and supervision.

Click here for more information on our DBT Internship Clinicians.

Interns will learn and deliver the full scope of DBT treatment including:

  • Diagnostic assessment
  • Treatment planning
  • Individual therapy
  • Insurance authorization
  • Group facilitation
  • Coordination with other health care providers
  • Phone coaching
  • DBT consultation team

Interns will participate in several DBT skills training groups (online/in-person), both adult and adolescent/multifamily group, weekly. Initially, this will be in the observation role then will be co-facilitating mindfulness exercises, homework review, and teaching of skills. Interns typically co-facilitate both an adolescent/multifamily group (ages 12-18) and adult groups (ages 18+) alongside 2 DBT skills trainers. Once interns have a foundation of how to deliver DBT therapy, they will carry a caseload of several individual DBT clients within a hybrid model. Interns will participate as a member of the DBT consultation team, weekly, and will have the opportunity to facilitate consultation team meetings. Interns will learn how to provide DBT phone coaching and will practice coaching individual DBT clients on DBT skills and will deliver one week of after-hours phone coaching.

Interns may take individual non-DBT clients in our outpatient setting for therapy early on in their internship.

Interns have the opportunity to shadow other programs such as: substance use disorder (SUD), CTSS (in-home family programs), ARMHS (adult in-home program), psychiatry, and psychological testing, etc.

Length of internship & Schedule Requirements

DBT internships are between 7-9 months long depending on school requirements and availability of sites. NAL requires that DBT interns be present at their internship site for 18-20 hours/week. Schedules can be flexible around these below requirements and student classes.

In those 18-20 hours weekly, interns will:

  • Attend weekly DBT staff case consultation meetings
  • Attend weekly 1-hour supervision with an assigned board approved supervisor
  • Attend weekly 1 ½ hour DBT Cohort first semester, and monthly for 1 hour second semester
  • Attend Outpatient Staff meetings and Peer Consultations
  • Attend monthly Internship Cohort Meetings from 12:00 pm–1:30 pm on the third Tuesday of each month


  • Educational degree: students must be pursuing a master’s degree in either social work, counseling, or psychology at an accredited university (with the eventual license as LPCC, LICSW, or LP).
  • Prior experience in the mental health field, whether prior practicum, professional, or life experience.
    • Common examples: prior work or volunteer experience as an: Independent Living Skills Worker, inpatient mental health, behavioral program or residential experience.


This internship offers competitive compensation to student interns, recognizing the value of your contributions to our program and clients. Interns are paid a monthly stipend each month that they are a student intern with Nystrom.

Locations of Internship

***Email recruiting@nystromcounseling.com to inquire regarding other sites if the above sites are not your preferred location.

To apply go to the Employment Opportunities page and apply to the “DBT Internship Application” posting.

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