About me

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Hello everyone, my name is Diane!

I started this blog when I was first learning about the child life profession & continued to post throughout my time volunteering, my practicum, my internship, and into the start of my career as a Certified Child Life Specialist. When I was first looking into child life I searched the web for child life blogs that could give me some more insight about the job & what it was all about, but I didn’t have much luck so I decided to start my own! Fast forward a couple of years later, here I am doing my dream job & with a blog that’s been there all throughout my adventure.

My goal is to make this a place for all of those interested in the child life profession to be able to get an “insiders perspective” on what the job is all about. I would also like this to be an inviting place for fellow child life specialists (students and professionals) to come and share ideas and become inspired.

If you have any questions or just want to say “hello” feel free to e-mail me at DianeMo.CCLS@Gmail.com – I love hearing from you guys!!

Thanks for reading!

Here’s my adventure (in a nutshell):

Spring 2012 – Graduated from the Florida State University with my bachelors degree in Spanish & Child Development

Fall 2012 – Volunteered at a local children’s hospital & took a child life class taught by a CCLS (univeristy of new hampshire, online class)

Spring 2013 – Practicum at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

Fall 2013 – Internship at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, FL

January 2014 – First day of work as a child life Specialist in a pediatric emergency department!

March 2014 – Became a Certified Child Life Specialist (CCLS)

February 2016 – Moved to another hospital to work as a child life specialist in an inpatient respiratory unit

34 thoughts on “About me

  1. Thank you for creating such a wonderful blog, your blog and a view other CLS blogs have inspired me to create my very own, as I embark on my long road to becoming certified as well! If you have the time, please visit my word press 🙂 I would love your support!

    • Ana,

      Thank you so much for your kind words! I am so excited for you if you have any questions about anything child life or blog related let me know!! You’ll see with time that your blog will help and inspire many others looking into this beautiful career. Best of luck to you in your child life journey!

      -Diane

  2. I love this blog! So many great ideas and I love that you share your experiences throughout each step of the journey. I started my Child Life Internship a month ago and am currently in the process of completing it, so I was excited to find your blog! If you have any tips about internships, please let me know, as I am in the midst of mine. Thank you!!

    • I’m so happy you’ve enjoyed my blog! How is your internship going? CONGRATS on landing it! As for any tips – remember that you’re a student and students should always ask as many questions as possible! I used to always carry in a little pocket sized notebook with me to jot down medical terms, questions, answers, and anything else I’d like to remember. Also, if you don’t feel comfortable doing something, say something! Again, you’re a student and you should be learning the skills you need to be a ccls all on your own. I remember when my internship started I used to think, “omg, I can’t believe I’m going to have to do these things all on my own one day…” 5 months later I am doing everything on my own (really on my own, I’m the only cls in our emergency department!) and thanks to all of my internship/practicum/volunteering experience, I know the best way to be able to take on situations. Good luck with everything! Keep me posted on how things go for you, Amanda 🙂

      – Diane

  3. Hi Diane. Just wanted to say I love your blog. I am also in the process of getting my CL degree along with a child development degree as well. I already have an associates degree in Child Development. I’m really looking forward in doing my internship. How long did you have to do your internship for? I have to do mine for 480 hours. Do you have any little tips on the whole interviewing process? Or anything at all on CL? Oh and did you get your number one choice for your internship? I am working really hard on getting in to my first choice. Happy Child Life Month!

    • Hi ashley! Sorry it’s taken me so long to reply – I’ve been so caught up settling into work and studying for the certification exam! — anyways, my internship requirement was also 480 but I think I ended up with 505 or so (coming in earlier, staying later…things happen!). As for tips about the interview process, make a picture* portfolio if you’re doing interviews in person. (*pictures so that you can speak about what you’re showing & they can see your excitement). If it’s over the phone, be yourself! I know that’s very cliche of me to say but during my interviews I laughed, and I made jokes, and I stumbled over my words at times. Also, if you don’t know the answer to a question, say so! Your interviewers know your background and they know you’re starting off brand new so if you don’t know how you’d respond in a scenario question, say it.
      I was actually very fortunate and did get into my first choice for my internship. Hard work is good! It makes you feel so much better when you make it to the top 🙂

      Feel free to e-mail me (dvm10c@gmail.com) if you have any other questions or comments about CL.

      Good luck on your adventure with child life!! Keep me posted! 🙂

      • Its alright I understand we all get busy:) I’ve started my portfolio, but right now its just on my computer. What all did you put in your portfolio? Other then filling out the internship application for the hospital you got what else did you do to get the spot? I know sounds like an odd question, but I just want my first spot so bad (I’ve been going to Riley Hospital since I was a baby and would just love a spot there) So hearing people tell me to not count on getting that spot really makes me mad. Which makes me want to keep pushing towards it.

        Will do. Thanks:)

  4. Hi Diane!

    I am a freshman undergraduate student so excited about becoming a child life specialist. Reading your blog has me even more excited!
    Do you have any specific tips on what I should be doing now, in undergrad, in order to be best prepared and as competitive as possible?

    Thanks for your updates, they always make me smile!
    Sam

    • Hi Sam! I’m so glad my blog has made you so excited about child life! 🙂 have you thought about volunteering? Maybe at a children’s hospital, a school, summer camps, etc.? Try and work with kids as much as possible so that you get comfortable working with them & have experience to reflect upon during interviews for child life practicums/internships. While I was completing my undergrad I was away from home and so I couldn’t commit to the 6 month requirement at my near by children’s hospital so I taught Spanish to 3rd and 4th graders and also mentored a 2nd grader once a week. Even though it wasn’t child life related, I was still around children & my experiences with that helped a lot in my interviews with questions like “how would handle a large group of children?” “What is your favorite part about working with children? What is the most difficult part…” — I hope all the best for you! Keep me posted on your adventure in child life!!!

  5. I’ve been looking for blogs about child life lately and got inspired to create my own as well. I think it is great that there are things like this that are available for people to look at because it helps to see someone else’s journey while going through their own!!!! Great job with the blog!

    • Thank you so much!! I love knowing that my blog is inspiring others – that is exactly why I started it in the first place! Good luck on your adventure!! Thanks for reading 🙂

  6. Hi! I just started my child life internship in Michigan and plan on taking the exam in November. I just wanted to thank you for creating something like this because it is really difficult trying to find blogs like these that are up to date. I look forward to reading your posts!
    Raven 🙂

    • Thank you so much!! I felt the same way when I was first starting out – wanting to see an updated blog of someone’s day to day adventure in child life. I never found one so I made my own! Best of luck with your internship & your exam!! 🙂

  7. Hey! I just found your blog and I am obsessed! I recently (last semester) switched from nursing (I was in my second semester upper division) to child life at The University of Alabama! I honestly never knew this existed and now that I know I seriously think I found my calling in life! I am currently in a practicum for Child Life and I am required to find blogs and impactful people in my professor for my class and stumbled upon this! I will hopefully be graduating in Spring 2016, of course that weighs on me getting an internship. I plan on attending graduate school in Fall 2016 before taking my certification exam after I receive my masters. I hope to follow along your journey and learn more since I am just in the beginning stages of Child Life!

  8. Hi,

    I am actually a pre-nursing student that is highly considering switching over to child life because of a course I am taking right now. I am working on a project right now and was wondering if I could get your advice on it. Thank you.

    sincerely,
    Michelle Belgrave

  9. Hey there,
    I absolutely love your blog! I’m waiting on the response from internship sites and I’m so terrified! They will probably be Skype interviews and I feel like I will stumble (I do much better in person, I think ..LOL) Thanks for all your advice! Can’t believe you have the time to work full time, go to school and manage a blog!

    • Thank you so much for the feedback! I had a skype interview for my internship too – it’s kind of weird but after a few minutes pass its not so bad. Best of luck to you!!! & thanks for reading 🙂

      • Thanks! I’ve had two Skype ones so far and you’re right, not as scary! I prefer them so much over phone interviews where I froze 😦 Gotten 3 no’s already but I have my hopes up about the other 8.

  10. I LOVE this blog! I am graduating in May with a non traditional Child Life degree. I am in the process of applying for graduate schools for Child Life so that I can be a child life specialist. It’s literally my dream job and I’m willing to whatever it takes to do it. I just know that Child Life is absolutely vital in a hospital setting and I cannot wait to be a part of such a wonderful profession.

    • Absolutely vital! Thank you so much for following my blog & best of luck to you on your adventure! 🙂

  11. Thank you for creating this blog! I am graduating from Western University in London, ON this April (YIKES) and my intention since I was a child has been to become a certified CLS. My marks aren`t the greatest 😦 that`s my only obstacle and major fear right now as I am working on my application. It`s amazing to read your posts and all the replies. I have never met or known anyone who has had this as their dream job like myself. Anyways, thanks for this blog. I look forward to reading more of your posts!
    Happy New Year 🙂

  12. Thank you so much for such an awesome blog! You have actually inspired me, and as I can see, many others to create my own blog about my child life journey so far! I just graduated from college and am completing a child life practicum right now in New York, and absolutely loving every second of it! I just have a question though, what did you do to get the most out of your practicum? I have been asking a ton of questions and everything but I want to make sure that I am gaining as much experience as I can! Any advice at all would be appreciated 🙂 Again, thank you so much for all of these ideas and stories! I cannot wait to be practicing what I love and helping children as soon as I finish my internship!

  13. Thank you so much for this awesome blog! You have actually inspired me, and as I can see many others, to make my own blog documenting my child life journey! I recently graduated from college and am completing a child life practicum in New York City, and I’m loving every second of it! I just have a question for you – how did you get the most out of your practicum? I’ve been asking a lot of questions and everything, but I want to make sure that I am getting the most out of my time at the hospital so I have great skills to bring to my internship! I have had two internship interview so far and am waiting to hear back from a couple more… fingers crossed! Anyway, thank you so much for everything already! This page is such a great resource for all of us aspiring and practicing child life specialists! I can’t wait to be helping so many children in my future dream profession and during my internship! 🙂

  14. I loved reading everything you had to say on your blog! Especially for students because I am currently a grad student for Child life! I am applying for internship right now in the Fall and feel as though I am struggling with the essays and my goals! If you have any advice or tips I would love to hear them! I wish you the best of luck in your future adventures!

  15. Personal question….how did you pay your bills while you were interning and doing a practicum? I’m guessing you were in the hospital during typical working hours…did you have a night job? Student loans? I literally just stumbled up this career, and my heart is quite literally pounding. I already have a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree and I’m lost career wise. Finding this blog and career is potentially life changing.

    Thanks so much for your help.

    • Hi Courtney, I am so excited for you to have found child life! Luckily for my practicum and internship I was accepted into programs that were near relatives homes & I was able to stay with family and not worry about paying rent. I did not have a night job and I wouldn’t recommend that especially during internship because that is a 40hour a week commitment! If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to contact me via email (dianemo.ccls@gmail.com)

  16. Hi Diane!
    What a great blog. This is so helpful and it always helps to hear different journeys and adventures. I graduated with a BS in Social Work and I am currently a Service Coordinator for an early intervention program; but I can’t wait to become a Child Life Specialist.
    I think I should start volunteering and begin to apply for my practicum and internship, however, I am a little afraid/scared/worried/etc… since I do work full time and not really sure what am I going to do when I start doing all of this!!!!
    I see that you have so much experience and volunteer hours.. I feel like I don’t … any tips on that? :/
    Thank you, hope to hear from you.
    Rosa

    • Hi Rosa,

      I am so happy that you are enjoying my blog! At this point I do have a TON of volunteer hours but I didn’t when I started out! In fact, when I first volunteered at a children’s hospital with the child life department I had to stop after 3 months because I had to move away for my practicum. There are always options when looking to volunteer – I know the hospital that I work at currently offers volunteer positions for weekends and evenings, there are summer camps you can volunteer at for children with special health care needs, you can even volunteer at the national child life conference! I can understand how it may seem challenging when looking at it all “on paper” but it’s all so worth it in the end. If you have any questions and would like to further discuss, e-mail me at dianemo.ccls@gmail.com

      Best,
      Diane

  17. Hey Diane!
    I loved reading your blog. Such fun activities! I can’t wait to have similar experiences!! Having interned in the Child Life Department here in India, i decided to pursue my dreams of becoming a child life specialist. I would love to get in touch with you for some clarity on the entire process.

    Thank you!
    Madhulika

    • Hi Madhulika! Thank you so much for reading my blog! Please do send me an email with any questions you may have – I’d also love to learn about your experience in working with the child life department in India! Dianemo.ccls@gmail.com

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