Trainee Spotlight: Lauren Hoffman, PsyD
I am a postdoctoral fellow at the Columbia University Clinic for Anxiety and Related Disorders (CUCARD) in midtown Manhattan. I received my Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and went on to obtain my doctorate in clinical psychology from the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP) at Rutgers University. During my time at GSAPP, I received clinical training and research mentorship from Dr. Brian Chu, with whom I pursued my interest in evidence-based assessment and treatment for youth internalizing disorders. I completed my predoctoral clinical internship at the NYU Child Study Center and Bellevue Hospital Center, where I worked in outpatient, emergency department, partial hospital, and inpatient settings.
Throughout my graduate training, I received extensive clinical training in a variety of evidence-based treatments, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety and depression, parent-child interaction therapy (PCIT) and parent management training (PMT) for youth disruptive behavior disorders, and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) for adolescent emotion dysregulation and nonsuicidal self-injury. In addition, my research has examined parent-child agreement on treatment goals, the relationship between bullying and emotional distress, and the development of novel assessments and interventions for bullied youth.
As a postdoctoral fellow at CUCARD, I am pursuing advanced training in the cognitive behavioral treatment of anxiety and mood disorders. Thus far, I have particularly valued opportunities to treat individuals across the lifespan, as I have come to appreciate the varying presentation of anxiety disorders across developmental stages. I also enjoy opportunities to co-lead social-anxiety groups with expert senior clinicians at CUCARD. I am learning a new treatment modality and acquiring skills for creatively maximizing in-session exposure practice. In addition, I highly value the group-supervision model at CUCARD, where I learn about complex clinical challenges encountered by fellow trainees and senior clinicians. Through that process, I have received valuable feedback from others and have gained experience and confidence sharing my opinions and knowledge with a diverse team.
Most importantly, my fellowship at CUCARD is helping me transition from trainee to licensed psychologist. Not only am I further developing independence and clinical expertise in anxiety disorders, but I am also exposed to opportunities for program development and teaching/training roles. I am particularly interested in continuing my involvement in designing and evaluating interventions for bullied youth who experience emotional distress. I am also invested in improving awareness of and access to evidence-based treatment through community outreach. I am especially eager to continue to work in training institutions and have opportunities to train, supervise, and mentor psychology graduate students and professionals from other disciplines. I am proud to be completing my postdoctoral fellowship at CUCARD and confident that doing so will help me reach my career goals.