The Institute for Juvenile Research (IJR), founded by William Healey in 1909, was the first institution in the world devoted solely to the study and treatment of mental health and illness in children and adolescents. IJR has a long and distinguished history of commitment to excellence in child and adolescent psychiatry research, clinical care and education. IJR was initially known as the Court Clinic for the world's first juvenile court (the Juvenile Court of the Circuit Court of Cook County, founded in 1899). It was later part of the Department of Mental Health in the State of Illinois, while maintaining an affiliation with the University of Illinois at Chicago. In the fall of 1990, IJR was transferred into the University of Illinois at Chicago. UIC/IJR now constitutes the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry within the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The chief of the Division is Edwin Cook M.D., and the head of the Department is Anand Kumar, M.D.
UIC/IJR provides professional training to medical students, general psychiatry residents, and child and adolescent psychiatry fellows, social work and psychology externs, interns and post-doctoral fellows, nursing students, and special groups, such as pediatric residents. The outpatient clinic is connected with community-based services and schools. UIC/IJR also provides consultation services to mental health facilities throughout the state, the Department of Children and Family Services as well as the courts. The fully accredited child and adolescent psychiatry training program currently accepts three fellows in each year of training for a total of six fellows.
UIC/IJR is located within the beautiful, new West side Research building located at 1747 West Roosevelt Road on the UIC Medical Center campus. The Colbeth Outpatient Clinic is located on the first floor and is the site where fellows give clinical care to their patients and families. The general clinic, as well as all of the specialty clinics, is located within this setting. Classes are held in this building every other year, rotating locations with the Child and Adolescent Residency Training Program of Rush University with whom we share didactics. Fellows' private offices are located on the third floor with the majority of other trainees and their program directors.
The core of the C&A psychiatry fellowship is two years of supervised clinical work with infants, children, and adolescents as well as with their families, schools and communities. During the first year of training, C&A fellows gain basic skills in assessment, treatment planning and in the broad range of outpatient treatment modalities. With supervision, fellows are consultants in multiple settings, such as pediatrics and within a consulting team to a paired public school and local mental health center. They also have two inpatient experiences, on site within a longer-term, DCFS-sponsored unit for adolescents and off-site with a diverse C&A patient population at Ingalls Hospital. The first year is a period of transition between the general residency and specialization. In the second year, child and adolescent fellows' knowledge and skills are further consolidated as they continue in both the general and specialty clinics of the outpatient clinic, assist in forensic evaluations, perform substance abuse evaluations and follow-ups, consult to a suburban special education district, further develop their knowledge of research methods and pursue an academic area of special interest. This year also focuses on the upcoming transition into clinical practice and/or further academic pursuits.
PROCESS AND SCOPE OF TRAINING
The primary goal of the program is to share the educational process with our fellows as they become the child and adolescent psychiatrists of and for the future. Our field is an evolving science in which the process of acquiring, evaluating, integrating, and applying knowledge is a life-skill that, once acquired in training, becomes a part of our graduates' professional identities. At the completion of their training, our fellows will be competent child and adolescent psychiatrists who can skillfully apply both the science and the art of medicine. They will acknowledge and respect the cultural heritage of a variety of patient populations, with special emphasis on IJR's longstanding commitment to public psychiatry and research.
There is much to experience, to learn and to question. Our trainees will become knowledgeable about the normal developmental theories of the brain, behavior, and personality while having the opportunity to observe young children. They will incorporate the biopsychosocial components of assessments to understand and then to treat the range of child and adolescent psychiatric disorders. This will require training in multiple psychotherapeutic interventions, including cognitive and behavioral, family, dyadic therapies as well as supportive, dynamic and interpersonal therapies for the individual child and adolescent patient. They will become competent pharmacotherapists, able to evaluate present treatments as well as new discoveries. Very importantly, fellows will learn to mobilize family, school and community resources in order to meet the needs of children and adolescents as well as to maintain them in the least restrictive, appropriate setting.
C&A fellows will learn to develop treatment plans from an evidence based perspective while acknowledging the many areas where evidence is limited. To this end they will participate in clinical research programs embedded within specialty clinics that are designed to enhance understanding of the development and treatment of specific disorders. Trainees are expected to become familiar with basic research issues in the field, and to critically evaluate psychiatric literature. Each second-year trainee is given hands-on experience and mentoring in a small group research practicum. At the end of their training, each fellow presents an area of research or of academic interest.
Fellows will also have supervised experiences in consulting with other mental health professionals and pediatricians, with public and private schools, and with other community agencies as well as with the court system. They are supervised as they learn to teach medical students and to supervise general psychiatry residents. Then as the transition is planned from fellowship to the community, they learn about the realities of current practice, such as managed care, administration, and negotiating a position after graduation.
We continually aspire to be a faculty able to model for our fellows high moral and ethical standards, dedication to teaching, mentoring, to helping others, and to furthering the betterment of children and their families. A collegial, supportive atmosphere is highly valued, and we actively seek trainees and faculty who will continue in this tradition.