I’ve been having a couple of Child Life students e-mail me asking about the pre-practicum/internship process. Since the Child Life Council (CLC) is currently restructuring this process, it can be a little confusing. Here’s what’s going on:
Up until April of this year, the process went like this: you submitted a “course work review” to the CLC – a document listing 15 child-related courses you’ve taken, 10 of which need to be approved. They would then send you back the course work review document signed, dated, and (hopefully) approved. That would then serve as your “golden ticket” to apply to practicums/internships.
After many interviews for a practicum and an internship I’ve been able to collect quite a few interview questions. Here are some that have stood out to me:
1. This is a common question in any interview. Pointing out your weaknesses is not a fun and easy thing to do, so I feel that it’s important to have thought these questions through prior to the interview so that you have strong answers.
2. I’ve heard this question in more than one occasion. You’re going to want to talk about past experiences with children and I feel that this question is a great window into being able to bring up some of those experiences.
3. A big part of my practicum was dedicated to developing our elevator speech (how you would describe child life to someone of they asked you in an elevator.) It’s good to have your elevator speech thought out and ready to go for interviews, yes, but also for yourself!
4. This question caught me off guard when I was first asked. It’s easy to get caught up with studying theorists, child development, and scenarios and while yes, that’s all extremely important, interviewers want to know about you as a person too!
5. Everyone’s goal for an internship or practicum (should) be to learn more about the career and gain enough experience to move on to the next step. Take some time before your interviews and create a list of goals you have that will set you apart from the obvious.
Well, you technically don’t need a major in child life/child studies to become a CCLS. The only thing that is required is that you take a course taught by a child life specialist and many universities offer it online (I took mine online!) Also, you will need to have 10 courses relating to children in some way – the following link will have more information. Hope this helps! Best of luck to you 🙂
I was able to take the online child life class taught by a child life specialist, at The University of New Hampshire. I was not enrolled at that school and because I live in Florida, I had to pay out of state tuition which wasn’t too fun. However, the professor I had, Trish Cox, was amazing! I learned a great deal from that class.
Posters! The Beatles? Lebron James? Adele? The Twilight Saga? – whatever your teen is motivated by & loves it would be an awesome idea to have something up that can provide a sense of love and comfort in their hospital room. Allow your teen to personalize their room as much as possible with permission granted from hospital staff.
Calendar. In this particular case the teen will be in the hospital for about a month so it would be an awesome idea to have a calendar up for her to be able to keep track of doctor visits, fun activities within the hospital, and to chart her progress.
A white board (if one not in room already) or a big poster. For family and friends to leave inspiring messages on when they pass by for a visit. Contact with peers is extremely important for teens and so being able to read messages from their friends after they’ve left could be very comforting for a teen in the hospital.
Bedding/Pillows/Rugs. If allowed by your nurses and doctors, bringing in these items from home will make their room more customized to their liking. Also, the smell of home will linger around them for a while making the first couple of nights in the hospital a little more comforting.
Photo frames with photos of friends. Again, maintaining peer relationships is crucial for teens and so keeping framed photos of them around is a nice touch for personalizing their room.
New things waiting for her at the hospital. Take into consideration new things that she may be encountering at the hospital. For example, perhaps an IV pole – she could take something from home to hang on it & make it her own. Maybe she would be interested in picking out her own decal for her IV bags – check out www.littlelovemedical.com