Therapist Training & Education

Practicum Opportunities

We are proud to support and encourage employees’ growth!

Train with Us

Complete your practicum and clinical requirements at Palomar Family Counseling Service and join a vibrant community of counselors who are committed to bring mental health services to everyone who needs it. You’ll serve a diverse mix of individuals and can explore a wide range of experiences.

Practicum students generally work 16-20 hours per week from September through August and easily meet their program’s requirements for face-to-face clinical hours. We work both with brick-and-mortar and online education programs.


PFCS is an approved practicum site for schools including the following:

  • Alliant University
  • Azusa Pacific University
  • Bastyr University
  • Brandman University
  • California Baptist University
  • California State University at San Marcos
  • California State University at Fullerton
  • Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  • Columbia University
  • Grand Canyon University
  • Liberty University
  • National University
  • Northcentral University
  • Pacifica Graduate Institute at Cal Poly
  • Palo Alto University
  • Pepperdine University
  • Point Loma Nazarene University
  • San Diego State University
  • San Diego University for Integrative Studies
  • Simmons College
  • Touro University
  • University of Phoenix
  • University of Redlands
  • University of San Diego
  • Walden University
CAMFT Approved Continuing Education Provider

California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT)

PFCS is recognized as a CAMFT approved Continuing Education Provider. All continuing education courses offered by PFCS meet the criteria established by the California BBS for license renewal. Provider Number 1000016.

Practicum Opportunity FAQs

Will I need to complete a background check? Will I be responsible for these and covering the costs? 
Yes, acceptance into the practicum program at PFCS will be contingent upon a clean background check. Background checks are completed by Live Scan in Escondido. Once you have been interviewed and recommended for acceptance at PFCS, the background check is offered at no cost to you.
What are the dress code expectations for trainees?  
All trainees are required to always dress professionally, but most especially when working with clients or meeting with other professionals. Our dress code is business casual.
What days and hours will I be expected to work? 
Days vary depending on your school schedule.  In general, most trainees work traditional school hours (approximately 8 – 3:30) two days per week, with one another day designated for group supervision and to see clients in the clinic.  Our clinic is open until 7pm, Monday through Thursday, and until 5pm on Fridays.
Am I expected to work during my university’s scheduled holidays and breaks? 
In general, yes, although we encourage breaks and vacation for self-care.  Since much work is school based, those assignments will pause over the school districts’ breaks.  Clinical clients are seen year-round.
What populations will I work with?  
here are lots of options!  You will most likely be assigned days providing school-based counseling where you could serve students from TK through grade 12.  PFCS also has programs targeting children aged five and under. Clinical assignments can be for any age or family constellation.  PFCS also offers groups for domestic violence offenders and various parenting groups, so many trainees obtain experience at group facilitation as well.
Will I be expected to travel? How often? Will I need to use my own car? 
You will need to travel to assigned schools, and to the Escondido office once per week. (Depending on assignment, you may also work out of the Fallbrook or Vista offices.) You will need to use your own vehicle thus a valid driver’s license and adequate auto insurance are also required.
What experiences, skills, and characteristics does your agency look for? 
We love caring, motivated, energetic, open, and creative trainees who are eager to learn.  You will need to manage your time well, be a collaborative partner with colleagues and school personnel, and represent the agency professionally in the community.
I need to bring my own laptop? 
We will provide you with a laptop computer to use during your time at PFCS. You will be given a PFCS email address for internal and external communication.
What resources are available to students?
PFCS employs than 50 licensed or registered mental health professionals, as well as case managers, community outreach specialists, and administrative staff.  Clinical supervision is provided by both Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists and Licensed Clinical Social Workers. We provide training at orientation and professional development opportunities throughout the year. You will also have access to our online resources.
I learned to provide direct clinical services including individual, couples, and group psychotherapy to a culturally diverse population.

Everyone at PFCS is approachable, including office staff, supervisors, and fellow trainees. This positive and productive atmosphere is the result of the professionalism with which everyone conducts themselves.

The exposure to school site populations as well as clinical clients was crucial to my development as a therapist.

The environment at PFCS is a model for future working relationships. Furthermore, the exposure to different populations also prepared me for future potential clients with varying mental health issues.