Child Life Internships
Children's Health℠ clinical internship program is accredited and recognized by the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP) on their professional website. Children's Medical Center Dallas clinical internship program has met the minimum standards for a clinical internship program set forth by the ACLP.
The 600-hour Child Life Internship at Children's Medical Center Dallas provides a supervised, guided learning experience with children. It has been designed to meet your unique needs and allow you to acquire professional child life skills.
Child Life Internships are offered in spring, summer and fall to students attending a university. They’re organized to meet the requirements of the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP) certification, to address your specific interests, and comply with your academic institution's requirements. The internship is a 15-week, 40 hour a week, full-time unpaid position that is divided into two, six week rotations with orientation, site visit and shadow weeks in between the rotations.
The basic components of the internship are organized around the child life competencies. As an intern you will
- Increase your familiarity with hospital policies and procedures by observing child life staff in various settings.
- Learn about diverse areas in child life by participating in daily student groups.
- Work in two different clinical areas of the Child Life Department for six weeks each. In these assignments you provide child life services, under the supervision of a certified child life specialist (CCLS), to the patient population served.
- Participate in multidisciplinary meetings such as patient care conferences and clinical rounds.
- Complete the following assignments: case presentations, evidence based practice (EBP) presentation, child life talks, pediatric diagnosis presentation, an intern project, weekly journals and required readings.
- Attend additional learning experiences to meet specific areas of interest or to address the academic institution’s requirements.
The internship curriculum incorporates child life programming challenges and strategies to further your ability to address current health care issues. You will be given the opportunity to:
- Build independent professional skills
- Strengthen your therapeutic group play supervision skills
- Develop assessment and intervention skills with individual patients
Your clinical supervisor, along with other staff members in the department, provides instruction and guidance. You typically will work the same hours as your clinical supervisor. Additional evening, and weekend and holiday experiences may be required. The interns are also required to work a holiday which is either Easter, July 4 or Halloween.
Students are evaluated based upon the following:
- Written mid-term and final evaluations using a tool based on the ACLP’s competencies
- Objectives determined by the student and supervisor
- Objectives established by the student's academic department
- Completion of all required assignments
Click here for additional internship information for an internship information packet
To be considered a candidate for a Child Life Internship, you will be required to meet all of the following criteria. You must be enrolled at a university during the internship.
Please note that at this time, we are unable to enter into new affiliation agreements. Click here to view the list of current affiliation agreements we have with Universities. If your school is not on this list then you will not be eligible to apply with us at this time. Also, if you are an independent student then, please do not submit an application, as no exceptions can be made by our hospital. You also are required to
- Have a minimum 3.0 MAJOR GPA.
- Have successfully completed a minimum of a 100-hour Child Life Practicum experience under a Certified Child Life Specialist working with infants, children, youth and/or families undergoing stress and trauma. At least 50 of these hours must be completed at the time you are applying for the internship program. The entire 100 hours Child Life Practicum must be completed by the start of the internship.
- Have completed at least 100 hours of experience with well infants, children, youth and/or families.
- Have successfully completed child life coursework that included the 6 applied areas of study as required by ACLP. This course must be completed by the start of the internship.
- Have successfully completed an ACLP Eligibility Assessment, showing all 10 required courses by ACLP accepted, with one being the child life course taught by a certified child life specialist. All required courses must be completed by the start of the internship.
How to Apply
Click here to complete the online application to complete the online internship application.
Please note that at this time, we are unable to enter into new affiliation agreements. Click here to view the list of current affiliation agreements we have with Universities. If your school is not on this list then you will not be eligible to apply with us at this time.
- Within the application you will also attach:
- Current one page Resume (Do NOT submit more than one page)
- A one page Cover Letter explaining why you have chosen to apply for this internship site and what qualities you for this internship
- Documentation of the ACLP Eligibility Assessment Report showing all coursework as "passed."
- Documentation of a 100-hour Child Life Practicum completed under the supervision of a Certified Child Life Specialist using the practicum verification form
- If the Child Life Practicum is not completed at the time of applying to the internship then the candidate must submit a Practicum in Progress form. At least 50 of these hours must be completed at the time you are applying for the internship program. The entire 100 hours Child Life Practicum must be completed by the start of the internship.
- Unofficial University transcripts from all Universities. The intern will be asked to submit Official Transcript if/once selected as an intern at this site.
Please note that you will need to complete and submit the application at once, and will not be able to save it. Make sure you have all required documents and ready to submit it once you start the online application.
In addition to the online application, you must submit:
- Two completed references forms using the attached form. These forms should be emailed to email@example.com and should be emailed directly by the person completing the reference forms for you.
- One reference form must be from an academic professor
- One reference form must be from your child life practicum supervisor
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
- Within the application you will also attach:
All applications must be submitted by 12 midnight central standard time by the application deadline as specified by Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP). The recommendation forms and practicum verification form must be emailed by 12 midnight central standard time by the same application deadline.
After initial application screening, candidates will participate in a short phone screen with a member from the intern committee. We will then select 10 candidates to participate in the formal interview process. At Children’s Health, we conduct Multi-Mini Interviews (MMI) where candidates rotate through 5 stations for 15 minutes at each station and meet with the interviewer individually. Candidates chosen for the interview can choose to participate during either the morning session (8am-11am) or afternoon session (12:30pm-3:30pm). Candidates must be available to stay for the entire time on the dates listed below. There will be a group information session and Q&A at the end. All interviews will be conducted virtually using Zoom and Face Time for all candidates.
The 2021 interview dates are below:
February 4, 2021
April 29, 2021
October 7, 2021
Children’s Health follows the internship offer date and process from the ACLP, which can be found at www.childlife.org.