Pre-Doctoral Fellowship in Social Work Neuroscience and Clinical Research on Behavioral Health Interventions

Job Short Description:

Eric Garland, PhD, Associate Dean for Research at the University of Utah College of Social Work and Director of the Center on Mindfulness and Integrative Health Intervention Development, is seeking clinically-trained social work PhD students for a fellowship in social work neuroscience and clinical research on behavioral health interventions. Pre-doctoral fellows will assist in Federally-funded research; faculty at the University of Utah College of Social Work are currently conducting research projects funded by NIH -National Institute of Drug Abuse, NIH-National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, NIH-National Institute on Aging, National Institute on Justice, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense, and Patient Center Research Outcomes Institute (PCORI).

Pre-doctoral fellows will support clinical biobehavioral research on mindfulness as a treatment for chronic pain and prescription opioid misuse at the Center on Mindfulness and Integrative Health Intervention Development, which currently oversees more than $17 million in NIH, DOD, and PCORI funded grants. In particular, fellows will help conduct randomized clinical trials (RCTs) and mechanistic research of Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement (MORE), a manualized social work intervention for addiction, stress-related conditions, and chronic pain. For additional information on MORE and current research, see www.drericgarland.com.

Pre-doctoral fellows will assist with the following duties: a) manuscript preparation from existing datasets; b) implementing mindfulness and other behavioral interventions to study participants; c) clinical data collection; d) psychophysiological data collection (autonomic and fMRI measures); and e) data analysis. Pre-doctoral fellows will have opportunities to coauthor scientific articles from existing primary datasets, as well as to conduct new research studies, leveraging the resources and interdisciplinary connections of the College of Social Work, which extend into Psychiatry, Psychology, Oncology, Public Health, Anesthesiology, Neuroscience, Family Medicine, Law, and Nursing, among other departments.

The fellowship comes with a competitive stipend in addition to a graduate research assistantship.

Required Qualifications: Dr. Garland is seeking doctoral program applicants with a MSW, strong writing and analytical skills, and clinical experience working with persons suffering from mental health problems, addictive behaviors, and/or chronic pain and other health conditions.

Preferred Qualifications: Applicants with a LCSW, previous experience with mindfulness, quantitative data analysis, computer programming, psychophysiological data collection/analysis, and/or previous study coordination experience on Federally-funded studies will be given preference.

College, University, and Environment: As a major research and teaching university—and the flagship of the Utah System of Higher Education—the University of Utah strives to create an academic environment in which the highest standards of scholarship, professional practice and teaching are observed.  The University is located in Salt Lake City, at the base of the Wasatch Mountains, providing ready access to world class outdoor recreational opportunities. 

The University of Utah College of Social Work has a number of excellent research facilities, including the state-of-the-art Bridge Training Clinic, consisting of four therapy rooms with one-way mirrors and videotaping capacity for behavioral observation and coding, as well as a Social Work Neuroscience Laboratory for assessment of neurocognitive and neuroaffective mechanisms of therapeutic change.

Application Process:

Review of applications will begin immediately and the position will be open until filled. Applicants should provide cover letter, curriculum vitae, list of three professional references, and published writing sample(s).

Inquiries regarding the position may be directed to Dr. Eric Garland, PhD, Associate Dean for Research, at eric.garland@socwk.utah.edu, 801-581-3826. Applicants for the fellowship must also apply to the Ph.D program in Social Work; please contact Mirela Rankovic, Program Coordinator, at mirela.rankovic@socwk.utah.edu 801-585-5979, or Dr. Christina Gringeri, Ph.D. Director, at cgringeri@socwk.utah.edu, 801-581-4864.

The University of Utah is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and educator. Minorities, women, and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Veteran’s preference. Reasonable accommodations provided. For additional information: http://w3ww.regulations.utah.edu/humanResources/5-106.html.