Medical College of Wisconsin Department of Neurology Neuropsychology Fellowship
Message from the Program Directors | Julie Janecek, PhD ABPP-CN and Michelle Loman, PhD, ABPP-CN
Hello and welcome fellowship applicants!
We appreciate your interest in our clinical neuropsychology fellowship. Our program offers a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in either pediatric or adult clinical neuropsychology, with emphasis on providing lifespan didactic training in addition to clinical training, research, supervision, and mentorship. Established in 1978, our fellowship program has graduated more than 100 postdoctoral fellows. Our graduates have gone on to be leaders and innovators in the field of clinical neuropsychology. We are proud to note that our graduates hold jobs in their chosen careers and preferred geographic locations in academic medical centers, hospitals, universities, and private practices across the country.
Our training program is housed within the Division of Neuropsychology, in the Department of Neurology at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Our faculty maintain active clinical and research collaborations within Neurology and across multiple other departments including Neurosurgery, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Orthopaedic Surgery/Sports Medicine, and Radiology. We actively involve fellows in these collaborative relationships.
Our campus is in Milwaukee, which offers a wide range of excellent music venues, restaurants, festivals, sports, arts, and outdoor activities. Situated on Lake Michigan, Milwaukee offers historic charm, diverse cultures, and something for everyone - singles, couples, and families of all types. We value work-life balance, and our fellows tend to develop a strong social network, spending time together at the many nearby parks, beer gardens, and restaurants.
We invite you to explore our website and learn more about the opportunities available at the Medical College of Wisconsin and through our clinical partners, Children’s Wisconsin and Froedtert Hospital. Please reach out to us with questions, and we are also happy to put you in contact with our current fellow cohort.
Best wishes and we look forward to hearing from you soon!
The Division of Neuropsychology was founded in 1979 and is located at the Medical College of Wisconsin in the Hub for Collaborative Medicine (HCM) building. The Division of Neuropsychology is housed in the Department of Neurology, and Sara Swanson, PhD, ABPP is the Neuropsychology Division Chief. The Program Director for the Clinical Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Fellowship is Julie Janecek, PhD, ABPP and the Assistant Program Director is Michelle Loman, PhD. The Education Coordinator is Haylee Hopp.
The Division includes pediatric and adult clinical neuropsychology faculty with expertise in clinical care, supervision and mentoring, education, and research, many of whom are, or have been, leaders in professional organizations. The Division also includes psychometrists who provide training and supervision in test administration, scoring, and testing logistics, graduate-level practicum students who participate in evaluation and testing, and dedicated support staff responsible for scheduling and insurance/billing procedures.
The Division of Neuropsychology offers two-year postdoctoral fellowships in pediatric and adult clinical neuropsychology. The purpose of the training program is to provide doctoral-level psychologists with sufficient clinical and research training to competently practice independently in the specialty of clinical neuropsychology.
The postdoctoral fellowship program typically begins and ends around the first of July or August, and we offer flexibility based on internship end dates. Clinical training is divided into adult and pediatric tracks, and fellows are recruited to one track. All fellows attend the same didactic series, which contains a wide range of topics across the lifespan. Educational programming and evaluations are competency-based. The fellowship structure facilitates mastery of advanced knowledge and skills considered necessary for independent practice in clinical neuropsychology with adult or pediatric populations.
Our postdoctoral training program is accredited by the American Psychological Association. The program is a member of the Association of Postdoctoral Programs in Clinical Neuropsychology (APPCN; The Clinical Neuropsychologist, 1993, 7, 197-204) and adheres to the Houston Conference (HC) standards (Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 1998, 13, 160-166) for specialty training in clinical neuropsychology.
The HC education plan “is predicated on the view that the training of the specialist in clinical neuropsychology must be scientist-practitioner based, and may lead to a combined, primarily clinical practice, or primarily academic career (p. 1).” As applied to clinical neuropsychology, the scientist-practitioner model envisions an integration of science and practice at all levels of training, including both programmatic and competency-based components. The model recommends a sequence of education and training that begins at doctoral and internship levels, and concludes in postdoctoral fellowship, that is designed to enable independent practice in the specialty of clinical neuropsychology. Our postdoctoral fellowship provides a full-time training experience that is designed to complete the sequence of education and training necessary for competent, independent practice in the specialty of clinical neuropsychology. The program builds on the knowledge and skills acquired in graduate and internship levels by providing advanced instruction and supervised clinical, research, and teaching experiences designed to achieve the HC exit criteria, i.e., advanced understanding of brain-behavior relationships and advanced competencies in the neuropsychological evaluation, treatment and consultation to patients and professionals in the specialty of clinical neuropsychology.
It is a goal for graduates of our program to be eligible for licensure and board certification in clinical neuropsychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology.
Program Training Activities
Core training activities include providing clinical services, teaching, and accomplishing scholarly projects. Our training also integrates the fundamentals of cognitive neuroscience, neural development, neuropathology, and neuropsychology through didactics to facilitate advanced knowledge about neurobehavioral systems and syndromes. Development of multicultural competence in neuropsychological evaluation is facilitated during didactics as well as individual supervision. The program stresses a flexible battery approach to neuropsychological assessment that is tailored to addressing referral questions and clinical issues uncovered during the intake interview, generating meaningful recommendations, and working closely with referring professionals in development of a treatment plan. Typically, multiple cognitive domains are assessed in varying levels of depth, depending on the nature of the clinical issues, the severity of deficit, and the adequacy of patient compliance and tolerance. In some populations, a targeted battery or a fixed battery approach is used to efficiently answer referral questions or as part of multidisciplinary clinical care and/or a clinical research protocol. Brief but thorough and informative clinical reports that address the referral question, case conceptualization, and intervention needs are written. Consultation to inpatient services and outpatient medical clinics is emphasized. Intervention is primarily focused on educational/therapeutic feedback provided to patients and caregivers about neuropsychological findings and diagnostic conclusions, and translation of assessment conclusions into meaningful recommendations and referrals.
Fellows will interview and evaluate patients with neurobehavioral disorders and participate in all activities that are necessary to make an inpatient and outpatient clinical service operational (e.g., informal consultation, participation in case conferences, etc.). Fellows will make presentations in the Neuropsychology Seminar, Journal Club, Neuropsychology Research Group, and Neurology Grand Rounds, and assist in the instruction and supervision of psychology practicum students. Fellows are also expected to engage in research activity and/or complete a scholarly project during their training. In some cases, a fellow’s salary may be partially supported by funded research grants, thus requiring their assistance with grant-related activities. Lastly, fellows are asked to help develop and maintain the Neuropsychology Seminar Series curriculum and participate in program evaluation through periodic evaluation of supervisors and the fellowship curriculum.
On average, fellows participate in clinical activities three to four days of the week. Fellows are encouraged to reserve at least a half of a day per week for research activities. The remainder of time is spent in various didactic and informal educational activities. The weekly time requirement is about 40-60 hours.
To apply to our fellowship program, please submit a personal statement including your preference for the Adult or Pediatric track, curriculum vitae, and two samples of your clinical reports electronically as one PDF file. Please have graduate transcripts sent electronically and three letters of recommendation emailed directly from the recommender. All materials are to be submitted to MCW_Neuropsych_Postdoc@mcw.edu.
Those who have not defended their dissertation are asked to have their dissertation chair provide written verification of their expected defense prior to the start of the fellowship. Deadline for submission of application materials is typically early December. Interviews of selected candidates will take place virtually in January and February prior to match day. The Program participates in the National Match. Deadlines for ranking programs and the Match date will be published annually by National Matching Services, the same organization that manages the match for psychology internship programs. Rules for the Match are essentially identical to those for the internship program match.
The Medical College of Wisconsin’s Benefit Package (PDF) is designed to recognize the diverse needs of our workforce. Our package offers:
- Fellows receive a stipend that is commensurate with NIH fellow salary rate, health insurance, optional dental/vision insurance and life insurance
- 20 days of paid time off, which includes vacation and professional time including conferences, licensure exam, and job interviews
- 160 hours of sick time at the time of hire plus accrual 16 hours of sick time per month up to a maximum of 240 hours
- A $1000 annual expense account that can be used for the EPPP, educational materials, courses, or conferences
- 403B: Optional contribution
- Family Medical Leave of Absence (FMLA) is available for fellows after 12 months of employment, which allows 12 weeks of unpaid protected leave within a 12-month period for maternity, paternity, adoption, serious health condition of employee or family member, military qualifying exigency or care for an eligible covered service member
- Parental leave provides up to 4 weeks of paid time off that can be taken by any new parent, which runs concurrently with other Family and Medical Leave and other approved leaves of absence as applicable
- Prior to FMLA eligibility, in the event of a personal continuous medical disability including parental leave, short term disability (up to 180 calendar days) or long-term disability (longer than 180 days) is available
- Faculty are nationally recognized leaders in education and research
- Weekly ABPP-CN preparation conferences
- Weekly lifespan didactic series
- Professional and research mentorship programs
- Participation in multidisciplinary specialty clinics and surgical programs
- Fellows provide supervision and mentorship to graduate students
- Dedicated research time (minimum of 4 hours/week)
- Psychometry support
Karen Martinez, PhD (Adult)
Iris Miao, PhD (Adult)
Sydney Park, PhD (Pediatric)
Katelynn Porto, PhD (Pediatric)
Rachel Churchill, PhD (Adult)
Corinne Guilday, PsyD (Adult)
Danielle Glad, PhD (Pediatric)
Sara Markuson, PhD (Pediatric)
Training in basic, translational, and clinical research is provided. Several faculty members are actively involved in the Brain Injury Research Program, the Language Imaging Laboratory, and the Center for Imaging Research.
Many large databases are available for collaborative research projects, including:
- Traumatic Brain Injury (adult)
- Comprehensive Epilepsy Program (adult and pediatric)
- Neurodegenerative Disorders (adult)
- PINT clinic (pediatric)
- Brain Tumor (pediatric)
- Congenital Heart Disease (adult and pediatric)
- Acute Medical/Neurological (pediatric)
The fellow may collaborate on an ongoing research project or initiate an independent project. It is expected that this activity will lead to production of a scholarly work product, such as presentation of results at a scientific meeting and publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Fellows are expected to commit a minimum of 10% or 4 hours per week to their research.
Adult Clinical Rotations
Froedtert Hospital, 9200 W. Wisconsin Ave, Milwaukee WI 53226
The adult neuropsychology fellowship emphasizes assessment of the full range of neurobehavioral disorders. Common clinical populations include individuals with traumatic brain injury, mild cognitive impairment, dementia, epilepsy, brain tumors, multiple sclerosis, stroke, hydrocephalus, and somatic symptom disorders. Most referrals come from departments of Neurology, Neurosurgery, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Psychiatry, Geriatrics, and Primary Care. The Neuropsychology Division maintains an active involvement in several interdisciplinary care teams including the Interdisciplinary Memory Assessment Clinic, Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic, Deep Brain Stimulation Program, Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus Program, Comprehensive Epilepsy Surgery Program, and Neuro-oncology Clinic. Inpatient training experience is obtained at Froedtert Hospital. Inpatient evaluations are typically conducted to determine capacity for medical decision making. Approximately 75% of clinical work is outpatient and the remaining is inpatient. Neuropsychology faculty and fellows conduct intracarotid amobarbital testing and clinical functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) for determination of hemispheric representation of language and memory functions in epilepsy surgery candidates. Faculty and fellows conduct intra-operative mapping during awake tumor surgeries using NeuroMapping. Fellowship training is provided through sequential assignment to four 6-month clinical rotations, in addition to routine responsibilities for assisting with inpatient consultation services. The four rotations are:
- Neurodegenerative Disorders Rotation: The primary goal of this rotation is to develop advanced knowledge and skill in the neuropsychological evaluation of neurodegenerative disorders (e.g., common differential diagnoses include normal aging vs. mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal spectrum disorders, Parkinson's disease, Lewy Body Dementia, and other atypical parkinsonian syndromes). Fellows will also work alongside neuropsychology faculty and neurologists in the Interdisciplinary Memory Assessment Program (IMAP) and provide inpatient and outpatient evaluations for normal pressure hydrocephalus.
- Comprehensive Epilepsy Rotation: During the epilepsy rotation, fellows develop advanced knowledge and skill in the neuropsychological evaluation of common seizure disorders, the effects of seizures on cognition, and how neuropsychological assessment can be used to assist in selection of patients for surgical treatment of their epilepsy. Fellows also learn to conduct and interpret intracarotid sodium amytal testing and fMRI for lateralizing language and memory and predicting cognitive outcome after epilepsy surgery.
- General Medical/Neurological Rotation: During this rotation, fellows develop advanced knowledge and skill in the neuropsychological evaluation of medical, neurological and psychiatric disorders that are associated with impairments in cognitive and emotional functioning. Fellows in this rotation become independent in the neuropsychological assessment, differential neurobehavioral diagnosis, consultation, and disposition planning of patients presenting with a variety of conditions.
- TBI/Medicolegal Evaluation Rotation: The first goal of this rotation is to develop advanced knowledge and skill in the neuropsychological evaluation, triage and treatment planning for adult patients during the first few weeks and months following traumatic brain injury. The aim is to assist patients with returning to work and school, and their pre-injury lifestyle. The second goal of this rotation is to learn the role of neuropsychological evaluation in medicolegal cases involving civil, criminal, and disability issues for individuals claiming impairments in cognitive and emotional functions.
In addition to these four primary rotations, there is the opportunity to participate in several specialty clinics:
- The Neuro-Oncology Cognitive (NOC) Clinic provides evaluation of brain tumor patients at the time of diagnosis but prior to treatment in order to establish a neurocognitive baseline. These patients are then followed throughout their treatments and for some time afterwards to monitor for potential tumor and/or treatment related effects on cognitive and emotional functioning and to assist in treatment planning. In addition to brain tumor patients, patients with other forms of cancer are seen in the clinic for evaluation and treatment planning. The clinic is staffed by a neuropsychologist who works closely with a group of neuro-oncologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, and neurosurgeons. Fellows may elect to rotate in this clinic during their General Medical/Neurological Rotation.
- The Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (NPH) Clinic provides testing to aid in differential diagnosis of NPH and to assess for cognitive change prior to and following spinal taps and lumbar drain procedures. This information is used to aid in determining which patients will benefit from shunting. For patients who proceed to shunting, testing is repeated prior to and following the neurosurgical intervention. This clinic employs a collaborative team including a neurologist, neuropsychologist, physical therapist for gait assessments, and neurosurgeon. Fellows see the NPH cases during their Neurodegenerative Disorders.
- The Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) Clinic involves evaluation of patients who are considered candidates for DBS treatment for movement disorders. The aim of these evaluations is to identify any cognitive or psychiatric issues that may increase risk for poor outcome with DBS. The clinic also performs post-operative testing to establish neuropsychological outcome and assist with continued treatment planning as needed. Our neuropsychologists work as part of a multi-disciplinary team that consists of neurology, neurosurgery, psychology, psychiatry, nursing, and rehabilitation. Fellows may see DBS cases as part of the Neurodegenerative Disorders Rotation or the General Medical/Neurological Rotation.
Pediatric Clinical Rotations
Children’s Wisconsin, 8920 W. Connell Ct, Milwaukee WI 53226
The Pediatric Neuropsychology Postdoctoral Fellowship offers the opportunity to acquire and refine neuropsychological assessment, diagnostic, and consultation skills in pediatric populations from 0-18 years of age. Clinical emphases are in epilepsy, brain tumors, acute neurological injury and disease including traumatic brain injury, stroke, and infectious processes, hydrocephalus/spina bifida, congenital heart disease, and genetic disorders including sickle cell disease. Within the context of these medical and/or neurological histories, differential diagnosis of various neurodevelopmental disorders including but not limited to Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Specific Learning Disorder, and Autism Spectrum Disorder, are considered. Patients are seen within outpatient, inpatient, multi-disciplinary, and day hospital clinic settings. Fellowship training is provided through sequential assignment to four 6-month clinical rotations. Across all rotations, fellows complete neuropsychological assessments for patients ages 6-18 years with neurological and/or medical disorders.
The four primary rotations are:
- Medical and Neurosurgical Evaluation Rotation: This rotation emphasizes conducting neuropsychological evaluations with patients being considered for cortical resection/neurosurgery such as those with epilepsy and/or brain tumors. Fellows gain knowledge about these neurological presentations, related treatments, and effects on cognition and emotional functioning. They also learn how neuropsychological assessment is utilized in consideration of neurosurgical intervention and participate in the weekly multidisciplinary conferences for 1) epilepsy surgery and 2) brain tumor. Fellows participate in mapping of language and memory functions via extra-/intra-operative stimulation mapping or intracarotid amobarbital (Wada) testing. There may also be opportunities to observe fMRI language mapping and magnetoencephalography (MEG).
- Preschool and Infant Neuropsychological Testing (P.I.N.T.) Clinic Rotation: This rotation provides comprehensive neuropsychological evaluations for children under 6 years of age with neurological and medical concerns. Emphasis is on holistic evaluation of the young child, including neuropsychological function development, parent and child relationships, and psychosocial factors. This rotation includes participation in the Autism Diagnostic Clinic and opportunities for clinical observation in the Developmentally Ready: Engagement for Achievement of Milestones (DREAM) Clinic. The Autism Diagnostic Clinic provides evaluations of children under age 6 years with suspected Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The team-based assessment includes clinical interview with attention to ASD symptoms, brief cognitive evaluation, completion of ASD-specific measures (e.g., caregiver and clinician rating scales) and observation of the child in play with caregivers. The DREAM Clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic focused on follow-up care for patients from CW's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) including infants, toddlers, and preschoolers who sustained neurological injury or complications.
- Complex Syndromes Rotation: This rotation emphasizes the evaluation of children with rare and difficult to diagnose disorders. This will frequently include characterizing cognitive profiles for children with genetic disorders or epilepsy syndromes with differential diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder. This rotation will include specialized training on in-person assessments, such as the BOSA. Fellows may also have opportunities to participate in multidisciplinary consultations within the Neurogenetic Clinic and the Nelson’s Rare and Undiagnosed Diseases Network.
- Acute Med/Neuro Rotation: This rotation focuses on understanding and identifying cognitive dysfunction related to acquired neurological injuries and infection (e.g., TBI, stroke/hemorrhage, encephalitis) for children ages 0 to 18 years. This includes documenting functioning during acute, subacute, and postacute phases of recovery. In the inpatient setting, the fellow provides consultation, targeted neuropsychological assessment, monitoring of cognitive functioning and recommendations to aid ongoing cognitive recovery and support discharge planning. Fellows also conduct follow-up outpatient neuropsychological evaluations during sub- and post-acute phases of recovery. Emphasis is placed on interdisciplinary collaboration with neurological, medical, and rehabilitation teams at Children’s Wisconsin within the inpatient environment. Fellows also participate in the Brain Recovery Assessment and Interdisciplinary Needs (BRAIN) clinic, which is a multidisciplinary clinic focused on consistent outpatient follow-up care for inpatients with significant neurological injury.
The Sports Concussion Clinic allows the fellow to work in the off-site Sports Concussion Clinic. Fellows will participate in this interdisciplinary clinic that includes sports medicine physicians, a neuropsychologist, a psychologist, physical therapists, and athletic trainers in assessing and managing acute and chronic concussion symptomatology.
Fellows are required to attend and participate in the Fellowship Program's weekly didactic series which includes: Neuropsychology Seminar, Journal Club, Neuropsychology Research Group, Professional Topics, and Case Conference Additional opportunities include Epilepsy Case Conference, Neuro-Oncology Case Conference, Neuroradiology Conference, Physical Medicine and Rehab Conference, Pediatric Grand Rounds, bedside neurology or neurosurgery rounds, and observations of brain cuttings and neurosurgical procedures. The fellow can elect to learn more about state-of-the-art neuroimaging techniques (e.g., brain mapping, quantitative structural (NeuroReader) and functional MRI, positron emission tomography, diffusion tensor imaging, MEG, and magnetic source imaging) and participate in weekly seminars and lab meetings on functional imaging.
The fellow also will gain experience in teaching, supervising and mentoring of psychology graduate students during their practica within the clinics. Faculty supervise the fellows supervising the graduate students in order to help them learn how to conduct supervision. Additionally, fellows provide mentoring for the graduate students in the internship application and interview process. Finally, senior fellows often take on leadership opportunities related to the didactic series, addressing short term clinical problems, and are encouraged to apply for competitive leadership opportunities in national neuropsychological organizations including APPCN, AACN, NAN, and SCN.