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If you are interested in Child Life, please join us for a special educational session: Child Life 101 (.docx).
Note: This page has been updated for the Summer 2019 Practicum placements. Please be mindful of this updated information.
All applicants must be enrolled in a college/university/academic program and receiving credit hours for the practicum as required by Colorado state law. We cannot make any exceptions to this. Thank you for your understanding.
The contract between the hospital and school will need to be negotiated prior to start of practicum. School must supply worker's compensation and general liability insurance for student activities and education. Student or school must provide proof of professional liability insurance. This is due to state law, and no exceptions can be made.
As professionals responsible for training and advancing candidates into the field of Child Life, we want to select students who are most motivated and committed to this profession. Specifically, we are looking for practicum students who are educationally well prepared to work with pediatric patients and their families. We expect all students to be working towards child life certification and must be on the way to meeting the ACLP course requirements. Additionally, we give strong preference to applicants who have significant experience working with children, ideally in a healthcare setting.
Practicum experiences are intended as an introduction to the field and to help prepare you for a future child life internship. Students will have exposure to the role of child life in the pediatric hospital setting as well as medical terminology, childhood illnesses and treatments. The role of a practicum student is designed with the idea of giving exposure and education. Please be aware that the role of a practicum student is not designed as an internship, and will be more basic and introductory in nature, allowing students to shadow staff and provide basic play interventions to patients.
Practicum students will be in the hospital two days per week for 11 weeks. Day one will be an 8-hour day; with a combination of shadowing certified staff, and planning, facilitating and evaluating programs in areas covered by the child life team. During their clinical day students will shadow staff, plan and implement a variety of recreational and therapeutic activities for socialization, normalization, developmental play and expression of feelings related to the hospital experience. Students will have rotations in a variety of settings to ensure a diverse experience. These areas may include the Seacrest Studio, and a combination of both inpatient and outpatient settings.
Day two, the practicum students will have an "Education Day" for a total of 5 hours. During an Education Day, students will have learning experiences as a group with a variety of different programs that work as part of the multidisciplinary team that child life specialists work with. Students will have time to process observations with clinical group supervision with the internship coordinator. Finally, students will have time during the Educational Day to work on preparing for the coming weeks activities and events.
As a project, practicum students plan and organize a Teddy Bear Clinic on the last day of their placement, to incorporate the many diverse experiences and lessons of their internship.
Other opportunities for experiences outside of the regularly scheduled hours often come up and students are given the option of participating in those event, but they are not required nor do they impact evaluations.
|Practicum dates (estimated)||Application postmark date||Notification made|
|Mid May to early Aug||February 27||March 13|
For 2019, the practicum will run from May 20 to August 2. Students must be able to be present on all assigned days.
Practicum students will work 8 hours on Mondays, Tuesdays OR Thursdays, plus 5 hours every Fridays.
Note: We only offer practicum experiences in the summer.
The application consists of the following pieces:
Note: Applications will not be returned. Only completed application packets will be reviewed. Please do not send your packet in different pieces - complete all parts before sending.
Please note that there are requirements that must be completed prior to your practicum.
Submit your packet to:
Attn: Tommi McHugh, MA, CCLS
Children's Hospital Colorado
Child Life Department
13123 East 16th Avenue
Aurora, CO 80045
If you need further information, please feel free to contact:
Student Experience Inquiries