The California School of Professional Psychology is home to the Center for Innovation and Change (CIC) in Los Angeles, providing organizational psychology students opportunities for practical experience. The CIC places students in consulting engagements in all levels of organizations. Students take on consulting and leadership roles. Some client organizations appreciate what CIC teams do so much that they have engaged CIC for many years. The CIC experience also gives recent graduates a head start in competing for jobs. Students report that their CIC experience prepared them for both internal and external consulting positions. Students with experience on several CIC projects are more likely to land competitive internships and jobs if they didn’t already arrive at Alliant with significant experience. Even mid-career professionals working toward a graduate degree find that practical projects where they can apply what they are learning in class helps make their educational experience that much more relevant and powerful.
For over a decade, the CIC has worked with organizations and public agencies on organization development projects. Through the CIC, teams of students in the Master’s and doctoral programs in Organizational Psychology at the California School of Professional Psychology work on short-term projects, usually lasting one to six months. Students usually partner with an experienced practitioner at the client institution to develop and/or deliver initiatives. This person could be an internal HR/OD specialist or an outside consultant working with the organization.
Services offered by CIC include:
- Organizational diagnosis and assessment
- Employee survey analysis—both qualitative and quantitative
- Program evaluation
- Strategic planning and action planning facilitation
- Change management planning and facilitation
- Strategic change communication
- Diversity assessment and initiative development
- Training needs analysis
- Training program development and delivery
- Team building
- Conflict resolution
- 360 Degree Feedback
- Leadership assessment
- Individual development planning
- Management coaching
Clients have included Goodwill of Southern California, The Walt Disney Studios, Disney-ABC Television Group, Metrolink, City of Hope National Medical Center, The Los Angeles Free Clinic, and the City of Pasadena, the Business Literacy Institute, and small and for-profit organizations. Clients build long-term relationships with CIC, creating a well-developed infrastructure to support student consulting.
After working on CIC projects, students are more likely to be interviewed for positions in management consulting, change management, training and development, and human resources management. For instance, IBM holds recruiting lunches with our students the students they chose to interview were those with CIC project leadership experience or heavy activity on CIC consulting projects.
CIC leaders and deeply involved consultants have gone on to work for great organizations for their internship or after graduation, including:
- Bank of America
- City of Hope National Medical Center
- Deloitte Consulting
- Ernst & Young
- Kaiser Permanente
- Personnel Decision International
- RHR International
- The Walt Disney Company
- The Walt Disney Studios
- Warner Brothers
Students are eligible to work on CIC projects after completing their first semester of classes toward the MA in Organizational Psychology or the PhD in Organizational Psychology at the Los Angeles campus.