Clinician Spotlight: Shannon Cusack, M.S.

November 13, 2018

Check out our Clinician Spotlight series! Each month we will be interviewing two graduate students involved in the training collaborative. We want to do this to showcase the diverse skills, interests, and expertise of the clinicians in our program. Ruben Martinez is a 6th year clinical psychology doctoral student under the mentorship of Dr. Bryce McLeod. He has been a part of the training collaborative for almost four years.

 Where did you go to undergrad?

Washington and Lee University

Did you always know you wanted to work in a medical setting or have any previous medical setting work exposure before graduate school?

I worked at the Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center before coming to graduate school.

Why did you choose to join the Primary Care Psychology Training Collaborative run by Drs. Rybarczyk and Jones? Did you hear anything in particular from other students that made you want to work in primary care?

I chose to join PC to diversify my clinical skills and gain experience with providing care to patients in a more medically-focused setting. Additionally, I am able to work with populations that are much more diverse than those we see at the Center for Psychological Services and Development.

What primary care clinic(s) do you work in?

The Ambulatory Care Center at VCUHS

What clinical populations are you interested in working with (Age groups, problem areas, any other thing you can think of)

I am interested in working with trauma exposed populations, broadly. Additionally, through my time at ACC, I hope to gain experience with weight-management.

What have you liked about your primary care rotation?

I have appreciated getting the experience with delivering behavioral health interventions since my work at the Center for Psychological Services and Development has not been as behavioral focused.

What are your big takeaways from your work in primary care so far? How do you think this opportunity will prepare you for the workforce when you graduate?

My biggest takeaway thus far, in the three weeks that I have been working at ACC, is that effective interventions and therapeutic techniques can be delivered in short periods of time. I hope to work in an academic medical center after graduation, and so the experience that this training collaborative provides prepares me well for that goal.