Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship

Program Overview

The Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center is a one-year, non-ACGME-accredited program that accepts two fellows per year.

Program Mission and Values

The mission of the Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship is to create a program that promotes administrative leadership, ethical decision making, empathy, service in the public and community sectors, strong communication skills and cultural awareness and sensitivity. The program will emphasize understanding of the needs of communities through training in health maintenance and prevention, recovery, psychosocial interventions, systems of care and administrative and advocacy exposure and experience. This vision statement is in accordance with Pennsylvania State Hospital Department of Psychiatry’s “aim to achieve excellence through the integration of education, research, patient care, and service to the community.”

The program operates under the values of:

  • Respect for everyone
  • Trust, honesty and integrity in all things
  • Teamwork and collaboration internally and externally
  • Compassion for everyone
  • Diversity of workforce, patients, students and leaders
  • Excellence in all things

The fellowship’s goal is to recruit, train and retain psychiatrists to be effective local, national and global leaders in the community.

Program Details

The Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship, offered through Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center’s Department of Psychiatry, is open to candidates who have completed an ACGME-approved psychiatry residency or fellowship.

The focus of the program is to help fellows develop skills in administration, leadership and cultural and religious sensitivity, and to gain a deeper understanding of systems of care, mental health advocacy, health maintenance and prevention and addiction and recovery.

The Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center offers the opportunity for fellows to earn a graduate certificate in public health, which will provide 15 credits toward a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree.

Fellowship curriculum combines a strong didactic base with clinical experiences in community settings as well as supervision, expert speakers in community psychiatry, participation in national conferences and completion of a research/QI project.

Our Team


Fellows will receive a minimum of four hours a week of didactic training in essential topics in Public and Community Psychiatry, such as:

  • Social programs and public mental health in the United States
  • Effective leadership practices and consultation
  • Evaluation methods, research and systems analysis
  • Recovery-focused services
  • Administration and financing of organizations
  • History of public psychiatry
  • Integrated care (physical, mental, substance use and developmental disabilities)
  • Services for special populations (the homeless, criminal offenders, LGBT, geriatrics, rural, child and adolescent, addictions, victims of abuse)
  • Professional ethics and advocacy
  • Trauma-informed care
  • Prevention
  • Disaster response
  • Religious and cultural sensitivities

Quality improvement/research: Each fellow will design and present a project such as a quality improvement project, new program or service research project.

Primary site placement: Each fellow will spend approximately 40 percent of their time at Pennsylvania Psychiatric Institute, a free-standing community psychiatric hospital, to gain an in-depth experience of how that particular site works and the contribution that the psychiatrist provides to that organization. At this placement, the fellow will participate in a clinical team to provide a combination of direct patient care, supervisory consultation, quality improvement, administration and internal program evaluation.

Non-clinical community services: Fellows will also gain knowledge of and experience in administration and leadership, local mental health/mental retardation agencies and governmental and mental health advocacy and policy. They will be involved in committees such as Ethics Committee and Performance Improvement Committee and take an active role in Pennsylvania Psychiatric Liaison Council.

Supervision with core faculty preceptor: A core faculty preceptor provides crucial guidance in all didactic and field experiences. This will occur for one hour on a weekly basis.

Supervision with field placement supervisor: The field placement supervisor provides clinical and administrative supervision of work at field site. This will occur for one hour on a weekly basis.

Field trips: Trips to public-sector treatment programs will occur throughout the year. Fellows will have 10 to 12 field trips per year.

To Apply

Candidates must be have completed an ACGME-approved psychiatry residency or fellowship before the start of this program.

The first fellows in this program will start in July 2019.

To apply, submit the following information:

  • Curriculum vitae
  • Medical school transcript
  • MSPE
  • Personal statement
  • Photo
  • USMLE transcript
  • ECFMG status report
  • Letter of recommendation from current program director
  • Additional letter of recommendation
  • Training verification form

Materials should be sent to:

Daisy Shirk, DO
Program Director, Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship
Pennsylvania Psychiatric Institute
2501 N. Third St.
Harrisburg, PA 17110


  • Completion of psychiatry residency
  • Unrestricted license to practice in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania prior to the start of the fellowship
  • Suboxone DEA X Wavier and DEA Clozapine REM certification


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Public and Community Psychiatry Fellowship

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Penn State College of Medicine is an equal-opportunity employer and accepts all qualified applications regardless of their gender, ethnic origin or religious background.