We offer winter/spring and fall internships. If the internship is canceled, notice will be posted on our website. We are not offering summer internships at this time.
San Francisco's internship program is accredited by the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP). To qualify for the program, you must have:
- A hospital affiliation with an academic adviser (if we don't have an affiliation with your university, we can submit an affiliation request)
- 100 hours of experience working with well infants, children, youths or families
- 100 hours of experience working with infants, children, youths or families in stressful situations, health care settings, or programs designed for children with special needs
- Clinical in-person practicum experience preferred but not required
- Successfully completed child life coursework in the six applied areas of study required by the ACLP
- Completed the academic coursework portion of the ACLP's eligibility assessment
- Completed the child life internship application
Before beginning the internship, you must also:
- Provide photo ID and proof of health clearance, including COVID-19 and other immunizations and an up-to-date TB test
- Provide documentation of liability insurance coverage, either through a university affiliated with UCSF or private liability insurance
During the program, you must be willing to:
- Work a minimum of 40 hours per week, including holidays, evenings and weekends
- Meet weekly with your rotation supervisor and internship coordinator
- Keep a journal, including sample chart notes and developmental assessments
- Create personal goals and rotation goals
- Prepare a case study and present it to the Child Life Services team
- Observe in-service trainings as requested
- Attend weekly classes taught by the Child Life Services team
- Complete rotations as assigned
- Prepare a significant project that directly benefits Child Life Services and its goals, which must be approved by the internship coordinator and rotation supervisor
Internship program structure
Interns work at the bedside with a certified child life specialist conducting therapeutic play, diagnosis teaching, preparation, procedural support, sibling support, charting and more.
The 15-week program consists of:
- Week 1: orientation with the internship coordinator
- Rotation 1 (six weeks) and rotation 2 (six weeks) with a certified child life specialist
- Two elective weeks
- Weekly meetings with the internship coordinator
- Weekly classes with the Child Life Services team
Internship hours are completed mostly on weekdays, with some holiday, weekend and evening hours.
A rotation supervisor is assigned to each intern. Your supervisor will meet with you once a week to discuss goals, journal entries, a case study, and specific rotations and interventions.
Internship application process
Please make sure you meet all the requirements listed above before applying for the internship.
Gather the following prior to submission:
- ACLP common application materials (please send as PDF)
- One reference name with email address
- University name and academic adviser
Submit your materials in our online portal.
We follow the ACLP's application deadlines. After the due date passes, we will review your application and then contact you.
- Round 1: The internship committee reviews the applications.
- Round 2: If chosen as a round 2 candidate, you will be emailed a supplementary questionnaire. This must be completed within 72 hours.
- Round 3: You will have a final interview via Zoom, per ACLP guidelines.