This month, the Kaiser Permanente Mental Health Training Program (MHTP) is thrilled to spotlight training director Ladan Khatibijah, Psy.D. (she/her/hers). Dr. Khatibijah started her KP journey as a third-year practicum extern at KP Roseville. She completed her internship at KP Walnut Creek with Addiction Medicine and Recovery Services, and then returned to KP Roseville for her postdoctoral residency. As a licensed psychologist, she served as a clinical supervisor and Journal Club facilitator before becoming the practicum program Training Director in December 2021. Additionally, her expertise in psychological assessment allows her to provide mentorship and supervision related to testing to all trainees.
Dr. Khatibijah describes herself as a lifelong learner, and being involved with the training team helps fulfill her passion for continued growth. The trainees with whom she works come from various backgrounds and training experiences, and Dr. Khatibijah recognizes the value they bring to the mental health field, her training team, their patients, and Kaiser Permanente as an organization. Dr. Khatibijah learns from her interactions with trainees, which motivates her to better serve in her role as a supervisor. She also sings the praises of her colleagues, stating the most enjoyable part of her job is “working with the wonderful humans who are committed and passionate about providing guidance, supervision, and mentorship to our amazing trainees, and while being the greatest clinicians with so much to offer.” She is grateful and honored to be part of such an amazing team.
Although she has an extensive history with KP, Dr. Khatibijah got her start in a different field. Prior to pursuing her career as a psychologist, Dr. Khatibijah worked as a Human Resources Business Partner and Generalist for about 10 years. Taking part in employees’ professional growth sparked a passion for her to continue to understand the human mind and emotions in a more formal way. As such, she decided to pursue psychology. She completed her undergraduate studies at Sacramento State University and went on to get her doctorate at Alliant International University, Sacramento. She was always drawn to KP—she once wanted to be a KP nurse, so was thrilled when she had the opportunity to work at the organization she aspired to in another role as a practicum extern!
When asked about what she wished she had known when she got started in the field, Dr. Khatibijah stated she wished she realized being perfect is an impossible goal. Although this work is very rewarding, it is challenging. She was able to equip herself with tools to overcome the obstacles she has faced with the support of her training team and many amazing supervisors over the years. Dr. Khatibijah learned that even when the road gets tough, our work is very impactful, and progress often takes time.
Dr. Khatibijah takes pride in her ability to show up for each of her patients with openness, eagerness to help, and compassion. She notes, “our patients trust us with their most intimate stories, and we should take pride for being able to allow time and a safe space for them to be vulnerable and heal.” She is also proud of her NVLY Justice Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) team for their continued contributions and effort to incorporate JEDI considerations in everything they do.
In her free time, Dr. Khatibijah enjoys spending time with her fur babies Shaazdeh (Prince) and Banoo (Lady). She also loves spending time with family, friends, being outdoors, swimming, and hiking. Dr. Khatibijah, your passion for your work and the people you work with is palpable! Kaiser Permanente is fortunate to have compassionate, dedicated clinicians like yourself. Thank you for all you do for our trainees, our patients, and our community.