Child Life Internship

The Child Life Department at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles offers a full time, 600 hour internship over 15 weeks, practicing in accordance with the requirements and standards set forth by the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP).

  • Prerequisites
  • Application Requirements
  • Application Considerations
  • Application Deadlines
  • Submitting Your Application
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  • Children’s Hospital Los Angeles requires all internship applicants to have completed a healthcare-based practicum of at least 100 hours supervised by a Certified Child Life Specialist who had at least 2000 paid hours of experience at the time of practicum. Although a practicum is not required by the ACLP, we feel that students who have not completed a practicum prior to their internship experience will not be successful in our program. Practicum content must be in accordance with the recommended standards set forth by the ACLP. Click here to view the ACLP Recommended Practicum Standards.

    Applicants must submit an ACLP Practicum Verification Form with application. Click here to view ACLP Practicum Verification Form.

  • Possession of a graduate degree in child life or other related field of study, OR in your last semester/quarter in a graduate level program, working toward a degree in child life or other related field of study. *Please see additional information about Master’s degree in-progress status in the “Application Considerations” section.

  • Complete ACLP Eligibility Assessment. Click here to view ACLP Eligibility Assessment.

  • At least 100 hours of documented experience with well/healthy children in a non-medical/health related setting verified by ACLP Verification of Related Experience form. Click here to view ACLP Verification of Related Experience form.

All applications must include the following to be considered:

  • Current, completed Common Child Life Internship Application. Click here for a copy. *Please see instructions for submitting your essay questions below.

    • Please include two Common Recommendation Forms: One must be from experience in a child life program (volunteer/student etc.). The other can be from a reference of your choice. These should be emailed directly to  ChildLifeInternship@chla.usc.edu. Please do not send letters of recommendation.
  • Complete copy of completed Eligibility Assessment from the ACLP. Click here for more information. All pages must be included.

  • All unofficial transcripts containing courses listed on your ACLP Eligibility Assessment. Official transcripts may be requested at acceptance to internship.

  • Current resume/CV and cover letter

We utilize a “blind” application review process for selecting interview candidates, and ask you to observe the following instructions for submitting responses to the essay questions contained in the Common Child Life Internship Application: 

  • Please remove all identifiers from your essay responses. These include your name, names of supervisors, where you completed your degree (s), where you completed volunteer, practicum, or other related experiences.

  • We realize applications may be going out to several hospitals for review– if you are unable to separate the essay pages from your original application, we suggest cutting and pasting your essay responses to a word document, removing all identifiers, and sending us the word document along with the application. Only the de-identified essays will be distributed to the application review team.

  • University affiliated students and their schools must agree to all terms of CHLA’s student agreement.

  • If accepted with Master’s degree in progress, confirmation of successful completion of the outstanding course(s) will be due 3 weeks after the close of the semester. Instructions for confirmation will be provided. Failure to demonstrate successful completion of the outstanding course(s) will result in the loss of your internship.

  • Stipends, housing, and/or relocation fees are not provided.

  • Due to the large number of applications received, we are unable to provide individual notification or feedback to applicants not chosen for interviews/internships. 

Please click here for application and offer dates

*Please note: We require all application materials be received by the deadlines listed by the ACLP

  • All application materials must be present in order to be considered.

  • You will receive an email confirming receipt of your application, and whether or not it was complete and will be considered.

  • Please email all completed materials to: ChildLifeInternship@chla.usc.edu, attention Amanda Cleary. We no longer accept mailed items.

  • All applicants that submit their completed application will receive a courtesy notice within 72 business hours. If you do not receive a notice, please email ChildLifeInternship@chla.usc.edu to verify application receipt.

  • Note: Per Children's Hospital Los Angeles protocols, employees of CHLA are unable to be listed as professional references during and after internship experience.

COVID Statement:

At this time, we are planning on offering child life internship opportunities for fall, spring, and summer quarters. As the COVID-19 pandemic is ever-changing, internship offerings may change as well.

Due to COVID-19, we understand that your fieldwork may have been significantly impacted. Although practicum experience in a healthcare setting is preferred, we will accept applications from those who have a practicum in-progress (with ACLP form) and from those who could not complete a practicum due to the pandemic.

If you have not been able to complete a practicum, 100+ hours working with children and families in the healthcare setting is still required (this can be volunteer or professional hours or a combination) as demonstrated on verification of related experience form. Click here to view ACLP Verification of Related Experience Hours form.

Discuss in your cover letter how/if COVID-19 has affected your experiences. Click here to view ACLP Practicum In-Progress form.