Missouri State University and Burrell Behavioral Health are planning to begin a Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) program in Springfield.
The partners signed a memorandum of understanding today (Feb. 10) at Burrell Administrative Center.
“With a nationwide workforce shortage and an ongoing mental health crisis made worse by COVID-19, there has never been a greater need for psychologists,” said Burrell Behavioral Health President and CEO Dr. C.J. Davis. “This program will provide a much-needed influx of these versatile behavioral health professionals to our regional workforce.
“For years Burrell has been interested in helping bring a PsyD program back to southwest Missouri, and Missouri State University is the ideal partner to accomplish this.”
Under the agreement, Missouri State will be responsible for creating and operating the program. Burrell will contribute $500,000 over the next few years to help establish the program and will provide clinical opportunities and training support for PsyD students.
“This is a win-win situation for everyone,” said MSU President Clif Smart. “Our community will have more mental health resources; our students will benefit from the expertise of Burrell clinicians; and our faculty members will be able to keep their skills sharp by seeing patients at Burrell.”
Details of the agreement
Students in the PsyD program will complete their second-year clinical hours and part of their third- and fourth-year clinical hours at a Burrell location.
Some classes in the MSU program will be taught by Burrell clinicians. And some MSU faculty members will have the opportunity to work at Burrell part time.
Burrell will also provide discounted continuing education courses to MSU program faculty.
Next steps in process
University approval of the program’s curriculum is complete. The MSU Board of Governors is expected to approve the program at its regular meeting on Feb. 18. Burrell’s Board of Directors approved the partnership at its meeting in late January.
The university will then seek formal approval from the Missouri Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development and the Missouri Higher Learning Commission and accreditation from the American Psychological Association.
Missouri State hopes to begin the program in 2023.