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UC San Diego Launches New Program To Attract Students To Mental Health Career

The UC San Diego School of Medicine building shown in this undated picture. 
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Credit: UC San Diego

Above: The UC San Diego School of Medicine building shown in this undated picture.

A new program at UC San Diego is designed to give psychology majors a unique experience.

The U.S. Health Resources & Services Administration estimates the country needs to add 10,000 mental health professionals by the year 2025 to meet the growing demand for mental health care.

To help fill some of that gap, UC San Diego is launching a new program that will let psychology majors do a clinical rotation through the School of Medicine.

With the help of a licensed clinical social worker, psychology students will screen patients who are coming to the clinic for mental health care.

Students will also get a chance to take part in some research.

The program is a collaboration between UC San Diego's department of psychology and the department of psychiatry at the School of Medicine.

Nancy Downs, professor of psychiatry, helped design the program. She hopes it will attract more students to the field.

"I hope that they will potentially go onto graduate school and increase our workforce for mental health, because this is an area within the state of California and nationally, where we really need a lot more care providers over the next 10 years," Downs explained.

The program is funded by a $470,000 donation from former UC San Diego student Joseph Edelman, founder and CEO of life science-focused hedge fund Perceptive Advisors.

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