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Internship - Unpaid Overview:


Samaritans Southcoast is an internationally accredited emotional support and suicide prevention telephone hotline offering undergraduate and graduate-level internships for students studying psychology, psychiatry, social work, mental health counseling, nursing, pre-med, and public health. Students in general study programs or other majors are also encouraged to apply. 


Internship practicum includes first-hand listening and support for people experiencing emotional distress and intervention for those in a mental health crisis, experiencing suicidality, or having initiated suicide.  Interns must complete five (5) hours weekly or the minimum weekly requirement of their college or university internship program, whichever is more.  A six-month commitment is expected.  


Interns participate in a mandatory, intensive, 35-hour, remote training program.  Training combines virtual classroom sessions, interactive online simulations, films and videos, and observation sessions with experienced helpline specialists on the phones.  It is designed to be both experiential and interactive and encompasses a spectrum of topics, including listening skills specific to Samaritans’ befriending techniques, depression, suicide and loss, general mental health issues, substance abuse disorder, problem callers, medical emergencies, data collection and using technology, and policies and procedures for hotline work.   


Before applying, prospective interns must determine that they can meet the particular requirements of remote hotline work, including access to:


  • High-speed internet

  • Desktop computer or laptop

  • Private cell phone

  • Private, quiet room in which they can take confidential phone calls


Interns are responsible for:


  • Securing prior approval from their institution, department, or professor before the start of an internship

  • Meeting institutional, departmental, and coursework requirements to receive credit for their internship

  • Providing practicum paperwork, timesheets, and evaluations to Samaritans Southcoast staff in a timely fashion 

  • Maintaining confidentiality about calls, callers, and Samaritans Southcoast’s privacy requirements, policies, and procedures

  • Meeting the requirements of their practicum 


To be considered for an internship with Samaritans Southcoast, please complete an online application at  If chosen to move forward in the application process, students can expect to be screened by phone, undergo a background check, and participate in a virtual face-to-face interview with Samaritans staff.  


Please direct any questions to Training and Outreach Director Christine Rizza by email at or by phone at tel. 508-679-9777 ext. 11. 

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