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Medical College of Wisconsin Clinical Health Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellowship

Health Psychology 2023

The Clinical Health Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellowships program aims to train competent, independently practicing Clinical Health Psychologists who will be well prepared to pursue a Clinical Health Psychology career in a hospital, healthcare setting, or academic medical center and to pursue board certification in Health Psychology. The program offers two fellow positions per year. Each fellow trains in two of the five major rotations available.

Although a formal post-doctoral fellowship is not a requirement of licensure in Wisconsin (please see Psychology Licensing Requirements in Wisconsin, “455.04 Licensure of Psychologists”), the Clinical Health Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellowship Program meets and exceeds the requirements needed for licensure in Wisconsin by offering non-internship, post-doctoral hours for licensure and EPPP support.

Clinical Rotations: Clinical Health Psychology Fellowship

Bariatric Surgery Clinic
The Bariatric Surgery Program is housed within the Department of Surgery, Division of Minimally Invasive and Gastrointestinal Surgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin and provides multidisciplinary services to patients currently engaged in the Bariatric Surgery Program and Weight Management Clinic. Bariatric psychologists are viewed as a critical part of the interdisciplinary bariatric surgery team where team members include surgeons, endocrinologists, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, dieticians, bariatric psychologists, fellows, residents, and students. Our team follows patients both pre- and post-operatively. The primary functions of a bariatric psychologist include performing empirically validated pre-surgical psychological evaluations and brief, short-term interventions to assist patients in their surgical preparations to ensure best possible outcomes in terms of both weight loss and psychological adjustment. In addition to performing psychological evaluations and brief interventions, fellows will have opportunities (based on interest) to provide services to patients in the non-surgical weight management clinic, engage in research activities, provide supervision to practicum students, provide didactics/seminars to learners, and conduct group psychotherapy as well as shared medical appointments. This rotation is outpatient-based where fellows will have 4 half-days within the Bariatric Surgery Program and Weight Management Clinic.
Cancer Psychology
Cancer psychology is the practice of health psychology as it applies to those being treated with cancer and addresses issues of adjustment to illness, coping with chronic illness, adherence and behavioral management, and end-of-life care. Cancer psychologists work with patients and their family members to help cope with cancer as well as the impacts it has on functioning, emotional distress, mental health, and family relationships. This rotation includes providing an empirically based, health and behavioral assessment and intervention for patients across disease sites (e.g. breast, head and neck, CNS, solid tumor) and throughout the trajectory of diagnosis and into survivorship.
Headache Medicine and Pain Psychology
Chronic pain is one of the most prevalent and debilitation conditions estimated to affect nearly 1 in 5 U.S. adults. Pain psychologists use psychological and behavioral interventions to treat chronic pain and improve a patient’s physical and emotional wellbeing. In this rotation, fellows will work as part of a close-knit interdisciplinary team of physicians, fellows, pain psychologists, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and physical therapists to provide comprehensive, collaborative and personalized care to patients in the Headache Medicine Clinic. Patients referred to pain psychology have a variety of presenting concerns including migraines, tension headaches, fibromyalgia, chronic dizziness, insomnia, co-morbid mental health concerns (e.g., anxiety, depression) and many other chronic health conditions. Fellows will receive training in evidence-based behavioral interventions that focus on teaching patients about the psychological processes involved in pain (e.g., Pain Neuroscience Education) and then improving pain and pain-related distress (e.g., CBT and ACT for Chronic Pain). Fellows will also have the opportunity to learn innovative new behavioral interventions like Pain Reprocessing Therapy (PRT) that use exposure-based techniques to improve chronic pain symptoms. Given the prevalence of chronic pain, the training in this rotation will give fellows the confidence to treat pain-related concerns that they will likely encounter in their career as Health Psychologists.
Palliative Care Psychology

Palliative Care is a specialty that focuses on improving quality of life for patients suffering with serious medical illness (e.g., cancer, advanced heart, lung, liver, kidney or vascular disease, serious neurological conditions, injuries from life-threatening accidents, and other serious or life-limiting illness). The goal is to minimize discomforting symptoms through a biopsychosocial lens focusing on physical, emotional, and spiritual distress. The interdisciplinary team includes physicians, advanced practitioners, spiritual services, registered nurses, and a psychologist. Palliative psychologists work with patients and their family members in an effort to help them with adjustment and coping of serious illness, interpersonal relationships, and mental health concerns (e.g., depression, anxiety, trauma, cognitive concerns, delirium, etc.), pain management, and end-of-life care. Common treatment modalities include but are not limited to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Meaning-Centered Psychotherapy, and Dignity therapy. On the palliative rotation, the fellow will work primarily in the inpatient setting and as part of a multidisciplinary team. Fellows will treat patients over the course of their cancer treatment process. Fellows will spend 4 half-days in the hospital on the inpatient palliative care team.

Plank Road Clinic
The Plank Road Clinic is a free-standing outpatient, ambulatory Froedtert Health primary care clinic with three specialties (med/peds, family medicine, and internal medicine). Fellows work within this busy primary care clinic serving a diverse range of patients with a variety of medical, behavioral, and/or mental health concerns. Fellows serve as a behavioral health consultant for adult patients and perform empirically validated health psychology assessments and brief interventions. They are available for warm hand-offs, ongoing brief behavioral treatment, and collaborative case consultation with primary care providers.
Collaboration Table 2F 3M

Didactics and Supervision

Fellows will spend the bulk of their time in a specialized clinical area (8 half days per week; 2 individual supervision also completed within this time), with time set aside for didactics (4 hours per week) and a Scholarly Inquiry Project (one half-day per week).

Each fellow will work with two different major supervisors, receiving two hours of individual supervision per week. The nature of the supervision will be direct observation, case review/discussion, and at times co-treatment with a supervisor (e.g., seeing patients together in a primary care setting). Supervision at each rotation will begin with direct observation and will evolve into case review and discussion as the fellow demonstrates greater levels of development across competencies.

View the Schedule (PDF)

EPPP Support

The program values the fellow's transition from fellowship into independent practice. As such, fellows will have access to support for studying for and completing the EPPP. The following EPPP support is available to each fellow:
  • Access to the library of EPPP study materials including AATBS study workbooks and flashcards
  • Individual online access to EPPP practice exams through AATBS
  • Up to 3 professional days allowed for EPPP study
  • Monthly EPPP Office Hours and Support
  • Financial support for EPPP License Fees

Meet the Director | Heidi F. Christianson, PhD, MS

Heidi Christianson, PhDDr. Christianson completed her undergraduate and master’s degrees at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her doctorate at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Dr. Christianson provides psychological services including assessment, psychotherapy, and consultation at the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Clinical Cancer Center. Dr. Christianson works with the Blood and Marrow Transplant Program performing pre-BMT evaluations and follow-up psychological care as patients cope with the resultant behavioral and health restrictions associated with the bone marrow transplant process. She also helps patients address adjustment to illness, psychological disorders co-existing with cancer diagnosis, complicated patient and/or family situations, and maladaptive behavioral coping strategies. In addition to direct patient care, Dr. Christianson collaborates with the Froedtert Grace Clinic Staff on early screening and intervention for psychological distress and quality of life throughout the cancer treatment process.

Learn more about Dr. Christianson

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Application Process

Qualified applicants will have graduated from an APA-accredited graduate program in clinical or counseling psychology. Applicants must have doctoral degree conferred prior to the start of the Clinical Health Psychology Fellowship Program. Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin encourages applicants from under-represented minority groups, women, and those with disabilities to apply. Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin encourages applicants from under-represented minority groups, women, and those with disabilities to apply.

Interviews will be conducted via a video platform. Applicants who do not meet required qualifications will not be considered for an interview and will be provided with proper notice. Interviews will be offered to applicants based on meeting qualifications and being identified as a good fit for the Fellowship. Notification of interview status will be given no later than January 1.

The application rolling deadline is December 15.

Mail completed applications to:

Sarah Hansen
Educational Program Coordinator for the Clinical Health Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellowship Program
c/o The Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine
1155 N. Mayfair Rd., 3rd Floor
Milwaukee, WI 53226
(414) 955-8964 (fax) | Questions? Contact

Employment Eligibility Requirements

The Medical College of Wisconsin has eligibility requirements for employment. According to the Wisconsin Caregiver Law, any employer identified as a caregiver institution must conduct background checks. On background checks, applicants must disclose all crimes and offenses including all civil forfeitures, misdemeanors, ordinance violations, or fines. Applicants will also need to disclose any pending charges for crimes or offenses including civil forfeitures, misdemeanors, ordnance violations, or fines. Failure to disclose this information on your application or misrepresentation of a disclosure will be considered falsification and will remove you from eligibility for employment. Please refer to the Wisconsin Caregiver Background Regulations and the list of Offenses Affecting Caregiver Eligibility to determine disqualifying events. All disclosures will be evaluated for relevancy to the job.

Required Qualifications
  • Completion of a PhD or PsyD from an APA-accredited doctoral program in clinical or counseling psychology
  • Conferral of doctoral degree prior to start of fellowship
  • Strong core clinical/counseling psychology psychotherapy and assessment experience
  • Strong background in health psychology in internship/residency and/or practicum (e.g., hospital, academic medical center, integrated primary care)
  • Interest in pursuing career in health psychology
Preferred Qualifications
  • Interested in pursuing board certification in Clinical Health Psychology
  • Primary clinical experience/interest with adults
  • Experience with empirically validated treatment approaches
  • Experience with health psychology behavioral interventions
  • Strong assessment background with experience in health psychology assessment
Required Materials
  • Curriculum vitae illustrating past clinical and relevant research experience
  • Graduate transcript
  • Three letters of recommendation

Stipend, Benefits and Accreditation Information


The current annual stipend is $60,000.


View benefit information on the MCW Human Resources website.

Accreditation Statement

Non-accredited. Questions related to the program’s accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditations:

Office of Program Consultation and Accreditations
American Psychology Association
750 1st Street, NE, Washington DC 20002
(202) 336-5973 | | APA Website

Core Faculty


Heidi F. Christianson, PhD, MS

Associate Professor


Courtney Barry, PsyD

Assistant Professor


Alexander Buhk, PhD

Assistant Professor


Amber Craig, PhD

Assistant Professor


Mackenzie T. Goertz, PhD

Assistant Professor


Lawrence A. Miller, PsyD

Associate Professor


Kirti Thummala, PhD

Assistant Professor


Lyndsey Wallace, PsyD, ABPP

Associate Professor



Adam Everson, PhD

Clinical Health Psychology Fellow

University of Missouri - Columbia; Residency - Medical College of Wisconsin


Matthew Reiland, PhD

Clinical Health Psychology Fellow

Doctoral Internship, Southwest Consortium, Albuquerque, NM; PhD, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; MS, University of Wisconsin-Madison; BA, Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH

Program Alumni

  • Divya Bhagavatula, PsyD
  • Alex Buhk, PhD
  • Amber Craig, PhD
  • Michelle Lee, PsyD
  • Alexandra K. Stalboerger, PsyD

Contact Us

Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine | Tosa Health Center | 1155 N. Mayfair Rd., Third Floor | Milwaukee, WI 53226


Sarah Hansen

Health Psychology Adult Track Residency and Fellowship Coordinator