Child Life and Family Development student opportunities

Child Life Practicum 

The practicum is designed to help students: 

  • Become comfortable in a hospital environment 
  • Become familiar with the typical diagnosis and treatments encountered in this setting 
  • Observe a wide range of child life services and interventions provided to patients and their families 
  • Engage hospitalized children in play 
  • Become an educated observer of hospitalized children’s play 
  • Gain a greater understanding of the child life profession 

How to apply 

We follow the Association of Child Life Professionals’ (ACLP) practicum application deadlines.  

Applicants should meet the following requirements: 

  • Be an ACLP member 
  • Have hospital volunteer experience, ideally 40 to 60 hours 
  • Have completed a class taught by a certified child life specialist that focuses on child life in the health care setting 
  • Have completed some child and adolescent development courses’ 

Download the Child Life Practicum Application

Please print and complete the application and mail it to: 

Child Life Department – ATTN: Practicum Coordinator 

986845 Nebraska Medical Center 

Omaha, NE 68198-2030 

Child Life Internship 

We offer spring and fall child life internships. Our internships are designed to support career training for students at the baccalaureate and graduate level.  

Our program provides students the opportunity to: 

  • Expand their knowledge of child life and child development 
  • Develop their ability to plan recreational and therapeutic activities for patients and siblings 
  • Advance their ability to provide education and procedural preparation 
  • Develop techniques to assist children with coping during medical procedures 
  • Sharpen their assessment, intervention and evaluation skills 
  • Gain comfort in providing guidance and supervising volunteers 
  • Observe child life specialists during adult consults to assist children of adults 

Our pediatric population is largely comprised of solid organ transplant, bone marrow transplant, hematology/oncology and trauma patients. Experience will be gained with inpatient and outpatient populations, including a rotation in the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center.  

Things to note: 

  • The internship program is 600 hours. Students will work approximately 40 hours per week over a period of 15 weeks 
  • Housing is the intern’s responsibility 
  • We do accept unaffiliated students (for example, someone who is independent and not completing the internship for academic credit.) However, unaffiliated students must provide their own professional liability insurance  

How to apply 

We follow ACLP’s internship application deadlines. Internships are offered twice a year, in the winter/spring and fall. Applications must be postmarked by the application deadlines.  

January internship deadlines: 

  • Application deadline: September 5 
  • Offer deadline: Second Tuesday of October 
  • Acceptance deadline: The second Wednesday in October (The very next day) 

September internship deadlines: 

  • Application deadline: March 15 
  • Offer deadline: First Tuesday of May 
  • Acceptance deadline: The first Wednesday in May (The very next day) 

Application is unavailable right now

Please print and complete the application, and mail it to: 

Child Life Department – ATTN: Internship Coordinator

986845 Nebraska Medical Center 

Omaha, NE 68198-2030 

Music Therapy Practicum 

We host music therapy students to complete course-required practicum placements through university-affiliated contracts upon request.

The music therapy practicum is designed to provide students with opportunities to:  

  • Observe a board-certified music therapist 
  • Lead music therapy sessions within the pediatric medical setting  
  • Learn about a variety of medical procedures and treatments 
  • Engage in interdisciplinary collaboration (e.g., OT, PT, SLP, Child Life, Nursing) 
  • Gain knowledge related to common hospital policies and procedures  
  • Be exposed to an integrative approach to music therapy in family-centered care 
  • Build professional skills and competencies necessary to prepare for a music therapy internship

Please email the Child Life and Family Development team at with additional questions.

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