The Child Life Practicum experience at Intermountain Healthcare provides students the opportunity to become more familiar with discipline of Child Life by providing opportunities to learn about children’s reactions to hospitalization, encouraging the development of observation skills with individuals and groups, providing a supportive environment to integrate theory into clinical practice, enhancing the student’s experience with planning activities and helping to develop professional communication skills.

The practicum program is offered as an 8-hour per week, one semester practicum totaling 120 hours. This is a non-paid practicum that prepares students for a child life internship. 

As Utah’s premier healthcare system, we are able to provide a variety of opportunities for learning and professional growth. We strive to give our practicum students both inpatient and outpatient learning experiences.

Goals and Objectives

  • To become more familiar with the child life profession.
  • To integrate theory and research into practice.
  • To understand the value of play in the health care setting and increase the student’s skills in facilitating therapeutic play through planning group and individual activities.
  • To recognize the developmental, psychosocial, and medical needs of patients and families and how those needs are incorporated into goals.
  • To recognize and understand patient’s and family’s reactions to stress, illness, and pain.
  • To develop communication skills with patients, families and other health care professionals.
  • To recognize the importance of working with the interdisciplinary team.
  • To continue to develop professional maturity, judgment and attitude.
  • To set goals and evaluate performance.

Prerequisites

  • Current enrollment as a student at a college or university.
  • Successful completion of a minimum of 15-hours of course work in areas relating to Child Life (ie; child development, family studies) with at least a B- in each class.
  • 50 documented hours of experience working with children and families, preferably in a hospital or healthcare environment (as a student, volunteer, or employee).
  • Cumulative grade point average of 3.0 of higher.

Application Requirements

  • Completed Application Face Sheet, Application & Questionnaire
  • Unofficial transcript(s) verifying enrollment/completion of required coursework and from ALL post-high school institutions
  • Two letters of recommendation. These need to be from academic professors, direct supervisors, or other professionals who have first-hand knowledge of your work with children and families. Each letter needs to be printed on professional letterhead, enclosed in a sealed envelope, and signed by the author across the back flap.
  • A professional resume
  • Verification of 50 hours worked with children and families. Your hours need to be printed on professional letterhead and signed by a direct supervisor.
     

Download an application >

Incomplete applications will not be considered. Mail complete application materials together in one packet to the appropriate location. You may apply to multiple sites, but you must complete a separate application for each location.

Primary Children's Hospital 
Family Support Services
Child Life Practium
Attn: Sheri Bothell, Child Life Educator
100 N. Mario Capecchi Drive
Salt Lake City, UT 84113-1103

McKay Dee Hospital 
Child Life Department
4401 Harrison Blvd.
Ogden, UT 84403

Utah Valley Hospital
Child Life Department
1034 N. 500 W. 
Provo, UT 84604

Intermountain Healthcare uses the deadline timetable provided by the Association of Child Life Professionals as noted below:

 
Practicum Session  Application Date Offer Date
Fall March 15 Last Tuesday of June
Winter/Spring September 5 Second Tuesday of October

Late or incomplete application packets will not be reviewed. All applications must be post marked by the application deadline and received within 5 days of the deadline. Once received, all applications will be thoroughly reviewed. Those individuals who qualify for an interview will be contacted by phone within two weeks of the application deadline. To ensure the most positive and productive fieldwork experience for all, the Child Life team will evaluate, select, and place only those students who exemplify the philosophy and goals of the Child Life Program at Primary Children’s Hospital. 

Those applicants who do not meet the requirements will be contacted by mail. All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply to other sites, as spaces are limited at Primary Children’s Hospital.

Being invited for an interview does not guarantee acceptance to the practicum program. If applicants are not local, then interviews will be completed via phone or video conferencing. 

Please call Sheri Bothell at 801-662-3745 with any questions regarding our practicum program or your application.