Summer 2023 Davidson-Broughton Program Update

The Davidson-Broughton Program will not be held in summer 2023. We value the learning experiences that the program provides and look forward to being able to resume the program in the future. Please contact Professor Sockol at lasockol@davidson.edu with any questions.

Davidson sponsors an eight-week summer program for undergraduates at Broughton Hospital in Morganton, N.C., a state psychiatric facility serving western North Carolina.

Students complete one course credit by taking Practicum in Psychology (PSY 290), which includes working in the hospital and weekly classroom meetings, times to be arranged once the class arrives in Morganton.

Participants work alongside hospital professionals as observers in patient treatment programs. Service to the hospital is an important aspect of all placement options. Expected placement options include Adult Admission Services, Adult Extended Treatment Services, or the Specialty Services Division, which includes the adolescent, geropsychiatry, and medical units.

Program Details

The application is released in late January/early February each year; applications are typically due in mid-March. Review the content of this page for more detailed information about this year's program and application deadlines. 

Program Faculty

Cindy Peters, Ph.D. - Instructor, Broughton Hospital, cindy.peters@dhhs.nc.gov

Laura Sockol, Ph.D. - Program Coordinator, Davidson College, lasockol@davidson.edu


Applications for the Davidson-Broughton Summer Study Program are accepted online. Please review the below information regarding the program and application process before beginning your application.

When completing the online application, progress cannot be saved; the application must be completed in its entirety during one session.

To apply, please be prepared to submit:

  • A completed online application form.
  • A copy of your résumé or curriculum vitae (.doc, .docx, or PDF).
  • A personal statement describing your interest in the program, academic and other experiences that have prepared you for the program, and relevance of the program to your future career plans (2-3 pages, Word document or PDF). Please make sure your full name is included in the header of the file.
  • An unofficial copy of your undergraduate transcript.
  • Non-Davidson Students: A copy of the syllabus from your abnormal psychology course (or equivalent).
  • Contact information for an individual who will submit a recommendation and letter of recommendation on your behalf. The individual you select should be able to speak both to your academic preparation for advanced coursework in abnormal psychology and to your capacity for ethical and professional conduct in the context of a mental health treatment facility. After you submit your application, this individual will receive an email with information regarding submitting evaluations and letters of recommendation through our online system.
  • A deposit of $250 ($150 housing deposit, plus $100 tuition deposit). In order for your application to be considered, this deposit must be post-marked March 16, 2020. Checks or money orders should be made payable to Davidson College; please note "Davidson-Broughton Summer Program" and the applicant's name in the memo line. We will hold these deposits until application decisions have been made; checks and money orders from applicants not admitted to the program will be returned to those applicants. We are unable to accept deposits via credit or debit card at this time.

In addition to the application materials above, all applicants must certify that they understand the program requirements regarding tuberculosis testing and other required vaccinations. Non-Davidson students who will require a letter grade for the course for submission to their home institution must indicate this at the time of application. If you are unsure whether your program will require a letter grade, please contact your home institution's registrar to confirm whether or not you will require a letter grade.


The program is open to students enrolled as undergraduates at a college or university. High school students, rising college freshmen, graduating college seniors, and graduate school students are not eligible for the program. Davidson students are given priority consideration, though we encourage applications from students at other colleges and universities. Rising college seniors may be given priority as the summer between their junior and senior years is their last opportunity to participate in the program.

We also require that our participants have completed some core courses in psychology, namely general psychology and traditional abnormal psychology (or equivalent), before the program begins. This requirement ensures that our participants have a knowledge base and framework from which to work during the program. You may apply for the program in the same semester that you will complete these requirements. If you have a question regarding whether a particular course would satisfy one of the requirements, you may contact Prof. Laura Sockol, Program Coordinator, at lasockol@davidson.edu.

International students currently enrolled at institutions in the United States may be eligible to enroll in the program. If you are an international student, please contact international student adviser Susan Hatchett at suhatchett@davidson.edu, to review your visa status, eligibility to complete a practicum, and maintenance of visa status with your current institution. If you have questions about your eligibility for the program please contact Prof. Laura Sockol, Program Coordinator, at lasockol@davidson.edu to discuss your situation.

International students who are accepted and enroll in the program will be required to have a letter from their current institution on file with Davidson College confirming that they are maintaining their visa status and are eligible to take courses at Davidson College.

Applicants who are accepted to the program will be required to submit and successfully pass a background check. Background checks will be at the applicant's own expense (approximately $30.00, though this is subject to change) and will be completed online by the applicant and submitted directly to Broughton Hospital for review.  Detailed instructions regarding completing this aspect of the application process will be provided to those applicants upon their acceptance to the program.

Please note that Broughton Hospital also runs a clinical psychology internship program, which is separate from the undergraduate program offered through Davidson. Information regarding the Broughton clinical psychology internship may be found on the hospital's website.


Practicum (PSY 290), Instructor Cindy Peters, Ph.D.

This course emphasizes on-site experiential learning, supplemented by informal supervision and discussion of issues and questions that arise from your practicum experience, and lectures related to relevant topics in clinical psychology. It is assumed that you have previously taken a course in abnormal psychology.

Students are expected to maintain a written journal of their experiences (without patient identifying information) relating what they do on their placement, as well as subjective evaluations, questions raised, and inferences drawn. Journals are due for review on a weekly basis. You will be expected to complete an ethics paper addressing an ethical dilemma in the field of psychology using APA's Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (2010) as a guide. You are also expected to complete an individual treatment case experience-based paper (again, without patient identifying information). Twice weekly meetings will be held to process your practicum experiences, address questions, and discuss special issues that may arise during the course of the week. Weekly lectures will be conducted by faculty members, and may include topics on clinical psychopathology, psychopharmacology, evidence-based treatments, and work with special clinical populations. Each student will be responsible for conducting two informal presentations to the class. The first presentation will be based on an assigned individual treatment case in the hospital where you will be expected to reflect upon diagnosis, and treatment goals and outcomes. The second presentation will involve discussing a relevant ethical issue in the field of psychology. Both presentations will likely require additional research outside of class time.

PSY 290 is graded on a pass/fail basis for Davidson students. In general, this course is the equivalent of a challenging semester course or a heavy credit hour quarter course at most colleges or universities.

Practicum Placements

As the summer session begins, you are assigned to one of the service areas in the hospital and will be supervised by a member of the Broughton Hospital Psychology Department who is assigned to a unit in that respective division. You will meet with your on-site supervisor for at least one hour each week. Over the course of the summer, you may have the opportunity to participate in activities across different service areas of the hospital, in order to gain firsthand experience with a wide variety of patient populations. Expected opportunities include: Adult Admission Services, Adult Extended Treatment Services, and Specialty Services which includes the adolescent, geropsychiatry, and medical units.  Students will work with their assigned individual supervisors to coordinate a weekly schedule based on the student's identified interests, goals for the program, and requested experiences.  Opportunities will be provided as they are applicable and available throughout the course of the eight-week program.

Community Integration Opportunities

You may have the opportunity to participate in other hospital training opportunities and/or community integration outings, which provides a chance to observe an alternative form of treatment.

Guest Speakers

Guest speakers may be invited to meet with students.

Ethical/Professional Guidelines

The relationship between the hospital and the college has been a very positive longstanding one, and each year students contribute to that positive relationship. You must consider yourself as operating under the same ethical and professional guidelines as if you are a paid employee of the hospital. All information garnered from patient records, patient interviewing, or other observations must be held in strictest confidence. It is especially important to be careful about comments made off the hospital grounds (such as in restaurants) and comments made around patients. Each student will sign a document that specifies agreement to abide by the particulars of these confidentiality regulations. Equally important are interactions with patients and staff. Students often find it difficult to understand why various treatment interventions or other actions are taken with patients. While students' services to the hospital are valued, it is very important to remember that you are not authorized to take any action with patients unless specifically requested to do so by your supervisor. Broughton patients may attempt to manipulate or take advantage of Davidson-Broughton students and may attempt to place them in difficult positions. It is also sometimes easy to "over identify" with patients. Please rely on the instructor, supervisors and Broughton staff members for guidance in patient interactions.

Living Arrangements and Meals

You have the option of finding your own local housing arrangements or staying in housing provided on the grounds of the hospital (for a room fee of $150 for the program duration).

Dormitory students live in double-occupancy rooms with beds, desks, and dressers, but share communal dormitory-style bathrooms. The dormitories may be shared with professional staff from the hospital. You are expected to follow the strict guidelines of the hospital, including cleaning after using shared kitchen facilities and keeping rooms clean, and to be respectful and courteous of the primary residents' needs and customs. Broughton Hospital may require that you adequately clean your living quarters and forfeit deposits for any damages associated with your living arrangements or hospital property before submitting your grade.

You may choose to find alternate local housing arrangements; however, we are unable to help locate off-site housing. Though you may intend to find local housing, the room fee ($150) is still required with the tuition deposit at the application submission deadline. If you find local housing, notification must be made to the Davidson College Psychology Department (704-894-2445, carobinson@davidson.edu) no later than two weeks prior to the start date of the program for refund of the room fee. We are unable to refund the room fee after that date.


Meals are at your expense. The hospital cafeteria — directly behind Avery Building — is open for breakfast and lunch on weekdays (breakfast 6:30-9:30 a.m., lunch 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m., and dinner 4:30-7 p.m.), with the exception of holidays and/or special circumstances. The largest concentration of restaurants is on South Sterling Street between the hospital and Interstate 40.

Fees & Expenses

Student tuition and housing fees for 2020 are $2,150 ($2,000 tuition, $150 housing fee).

  • An additional $100 security and key deposit is due by the program start date. Damage to the student's dorm room, failure to properly clean the room, and/or failure to return the student's room key and name badge will result in forfeiture of this security and key deposit. The security and key deposit must be submitted as a separate check or money order.
  • A $250 application deposit ($100 toward tuition and $150 housing deposit) should be sent by mail, payable to Davidson College. This $250 deposit will be refunded if the application is not accepted.
  • Half of the remaining tuition ($950) with a signed copy of the acceptance letter is due by May 1. If minimum enrollment has not been met by May 1, we will cancel the program and refund all money.
  • The balance of tuition ($950) as well as the security and key deposit ($100) is due by May 15.
  • Tuition will NOT be refunded if the student leaves the program after May 1.
  • Some financial assistance from Davidson College may be available for Davidson students with demonstrated need. Please contact Prof. Laura Sockol (lasockol@davidson.edu) for more information.

Davidson students may consult with the Financial Aid office about a student loan.

Health Requirements

The Broughton Hospital patient population comprises a variety of individuals including the severely mentally ill. Aggressive individuals, patients with HIV infection, and patients with hepatitis are among this patient population. Most experts recommend the hepatitis B vaccination series for anyone in health care, so prospective students should speak to their physician immediately about the series, which occurs in doses at 0, 1 and 6 months, to allow time to have at least the first two vaccines by the program start date.

Students accepted to the program must either sign a waiver declining the vaccination or must present evidence of having the first vaccine by April 15 and the second by May 15 when all vaccination records are due; we recommend that participants that choose to receive the vaccination begin the series as soon as possible. In addition, a two-step tuberculosis test within the six months prior to program start date is required; test results are due with all vaccination records on May 15. Any student who does not have the tuberculosis report submitted by May 15 will not be allowed to work on the ward until this is completed.

More information on the health risks and requirements will be sent to students at time of acceptance notification in the program.