Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis

By making a contribution to the Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis, you are contributing to the creation and advancement of educational opportunities and are promoting intellectual discussion that demonstrates the relevance of psychoanalytic understanding to everyday life.

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General Information

Official Name
Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis​​​​​​​
DBA/Trade Name(s)
Former Name(s)
Date Established
Offers Additional Colorado State Tax Credit
Tax ID
Headquarters Address
Mail Stop F546
13001 E. 17th Place - Room E2327
Aurora, CO 80045
Colorado Location
Mailing Address
Other Address
Mail Stop F546
13001 E. 17th Place - Room E2327
Aurora, CO 80045
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Mission Statement

The Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis is a community of psychoanalysts whose goals are to provide education in psychoanalytic thinking and treatment techniques, to advance scholarship and research, and to encourage application of psychoanalytic knowledge to related fields of study.


The 2019-2020 academic year ended with 85 Adult Psychodynamic Psychotheraphy students completing the first of two years of the program, 5 Adult Psychoanalytic candidates completed their final fourth year of didactic work, and 6 Adult Psychoanalytic candidates completing their second year of didactic work. There is 1 advanced candidate, and 2 advanced candidates on a leave of absence from the 2012-2016 adult analytic program.

Applications for Fall 2020 are being processed, we will have a 2-year Psychodynamic Psychotherapy class and a first year adult analytic class.

In December 2018, the Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis was granted accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Psychoanalytic Education (ACPEinc) valid for 5 years.

September 2019 marked our 50th anniversary. In 2020 we created the Gaskill Society for Planned Giving.


Our top five needs include:

1) donations for operating expenses

The Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis is a not for profit educational institution which has been operating in Colorado since 1968. While affiliated with the University of Colorado School of Medicine, it is financially separate and must raise funds for its educational programs.

Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic psychotherapy are unique in their non-reductionistic focus on the individual's psychological treatment needs with an emphasis on the role of the unconscious and childhood experiences in current emotional and relational difficulties. These are depth psychological treatments which use the treatment relationship as part of the therapeutic process.

While training in psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy has been important for mental health clinicians for many years, in this day of emphasis on biological psychiatry, short term cognitively and behaviorally based treatments, the availability of this sort of training for licensed mental health professionals is more important than ever.

We offer this post-graduate training to all accepted mental health professionals. The tuition the students pay is insufficient to cover the costs of providing training. This is in spite of the fact that all teaching at the Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis is done by graduate psychoanalysts pro bono. The costs of running an educational institution continue to rise, while other sources of funding have declined.

2) funding for faculty

Faculty donate over 3,000 hours each year teaching in our programs, being a part of a committee, and doing supervision. Not only do faculty donate their time, they are also required to pay annual dues to help support the operating costs of running the post graduate programs. We would like to be able to pay the faculty for their time.

3) preserving history

We have a large collection of oral histories, recorded lecture that we would like to convert beta, VHS, and film into DVD or MP4 format. We created a Archive Fund to begin this process, but more donations are greatly appreciated to help catalog and convert over 1,000 cassettes and VHS tapes and boxes of historical documents and photographs.

4) Funding for our programs in research, treatment subsidies and educational loans.
We are hoping to create a fund in 2020 or 2021 to help subsidize low fee analysis. This fund would help a low income individual receive analytic treatment by having the Institute subsidize a portion of the therapist fee.

5) facility

The Institute is in an Affiliation Agreement with the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Denver. This agreement helps greatly that we are able to have space rent free, however it is not a sure thing in the future as space is valuable and we can be kicked out. The current space is not well suited for our needs. Ideally we need space for 2 - 3 small classes/conference rooms, 2 offices, a library area, and storage areas in an area more convenient for our target market with parking.

Thank you for considering helping the Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis. It is my privilege to be the Director for this fine educational institution. We are a group of over 50 dedicated clinicians who mostly volunteer our time because we believe in our mission to educate licensed mental health professionals in the practice of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy.

In addition to our certificate programs, we are active within the department of psychiatry at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in teaching courses and supervising residents. Our faculty are also active in teaching with students in social work and psychology at Denver University. Working with the Denver Psychoanalytic Society, we support many educational outreach programs for the mental health community.

The Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis has a community referral service which connects patients interested in psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic clinicians. Most of these treatments are conducted at significantly reduced fees and available to both children and adults.

There is also a research arm of our institution. Because psychoanalytically oriented treatments are uniquely organized around listening to individual patients, a different sort of data can be collected and used to further our understanding of emotional difficulties. This body of research and knowledge has contributed not only to the development of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy, but also to the development of many other psychological treatments.

In this day of cost conscious treatments, there is a genuine risk that skills and knowledge which have developed over the last 100 years could be lost. Without ongoing work such as that done by the Denver Institute, all members of the community could lose this critical component of treatment.


The Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis is a school for advanced psychotherapists seeking to improve their competencies in clinical treatment for purposes of helping to restore mental health functioning. We offer two programs - a four-year program for those clinicians who wish to become psychoanalysts and a two-year program for those clinicians who wish to become psychoanalytic psychotherapists. In addition, the Denver Institute -- in cooperation with its sister organization, the Denver Psychoanalytic Society -- offers programs for the community, area clinicians, and patients who are suffering. Both of our organizations are accredited through the American Psychoanalytic Association. Mental health issues have become more urgent than ever, and our Institute and Society provide both education and direct services for treaters and those they help. Please take a moment to look through our profile and to assist us in carrying out our mission. Thank you.


"I never believed that being with 6 people for 2 years would be a great thing but it has turned out to be a great surprise and I am very grateful." - 2014-2016 PTP student

"I have learned more in these past six months compared to any other learning experience I ever had" - 2014-2016 PTP Student

Organization History

The story of psychoanalysis in Denver goes back to 1923 when the Colorado Psychopathic Hospital was built for the study and treatment of patients with mental illness and for clinical teaching.

In the early 1930s, Swiss trained psychoanalyst, John D. Benjamin, arrived for "balcony treatment" for tuberculosis - making him the first psychoanalyst in Colorado. However Dr. Benjamin did not become involved with the University of Colorado Medical School until Herbert Gaskill arrived in 1953.

Meanwhile, in the late 1940s the University of Colorado Medical School started to attract national attention. Psychiatry was taught for all four years in the medical school curriculum, had a liaison program that linked psychiatry to other services and established an outpatient psychiatric clinic for children.

Interest in psychoanalysis grew and from the late 1950s to the early 1970s, a group of six individuals (Robert Emde, John Kelly, Paul Levine, David Metcalf, George Mizner, and Samuel Wagonfeld) were interested in training and waited, as faculty members in the University of Colorado's Department of Psychiatry, until the Denver Institute began with its first classes in 1968. John Kelly and Robert Emde graduated in 1974 and the rest graduated in the following year.

Herbert Gaskill was the chair of Department of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado and was instrumental in creating the Institute. In 1969 the Denver Institute for Psychoanalysis was founded, and later became accredited in 1972 by the American Psychoanalytic Association.

Even with faculty with experience in child development and research, such as Rene Spitz, John Benjamin, Gaston Blum, and Dane Prugh, the first Child & Adolescent training program did not began until 1988.

In 1992, the Denver Psychoanalytic Society began offering classes in Psychodynamic Psychotherapies, which the Institute later took over.

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