The Struggle: Part 4a

Here you have it. For anyone looking to submit applications, this is for you; step-by-step instructions on how to go about applying to internships.

Disclaimer: I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing. 

  1. Check out the Program Directory on the Child Life Council’s page [only CLC members can access this; if you are applying for internships and are not already a CLC member, I STRONGLY suggest becoming one asap]. Use their search engine, and begin. Start with your home country/province/state, and go from there.
  2. Unaffiliated student? Check which hospitals accept applications from unaffiliated interns & make a spreadsheet – hospital name, location, contact info
  3. Once your sacred list is made, start researching individual hospital programs. Figure out exactly which hospitals require what from applicants, where applications should be sent, and to whom they should be addressed to [almost all US hospitals I applied to had a whole webpage regarding the application process…Canadian hospitals didn’t really have much regarding applications, so you may have to contact them directly)
  4. Make one Word document for each hospital you’re applying to with their information on it in list format (easy for checking upon completion!), and their mailing address. [most hospitals require the Common Child Life Internship Application]
  5. Set aside separate piles for who needs what. I personally laid out my Canadian applications and USA applications separate and then went on to divide up those that needed additional essays/cover letters/statements of interest and those that did not
  6. References (part 1) – how many does each hospital need? which needs academic references? which need professional? Figure out how many of each you will need.
  7. References (part 2) – who is going to be your reference for each category? Make sure you ask them well in advance (at least three weeks, if not more) and let them know how many they need to provide you with and whether or they should be written on company letter head/put in envelopes/etc. [and a thank you letter/email couldn’t hurt after they finish writing their letters for you!]
  8. Transcripts – who needs what? do any need official transcripts? if so, get them asap, and make photocopies of the official ones for those that don’t require official documentation
  9. ELIGIBILITY ASSESSMENT – get your stuff in to the CLC asap – it can take a MINIMUM of two weeks for your member portal to show an updated eligibility assessment and it is a requirement of many applications. When it’s updated, print one copy for each application package
  10. Proofread everything
  11. Update your resume to make it look and sound as fantastic as you are!
  12. I added a couple photos to my applications – not a requirement, but I thought it might make it a little more personal to those reviewing my application
  13. Use your check lists each time a new document is added to an application package and double and triple check everything before sealing the envelopes
  14. Once all documentation is complete, print out mailing labels
  15. Do not seal envelopes until you put the labels on – this prevents label/application mixups (how awkward)
  16. Seal all envelopes with shaky steady hands
  17. Bring to post office and ask them to date stamp every envelope!! [applications can still be accepted by hospitals as long as they are post-marked on or before the application deadline]
  18. Celebrate! Your living room floor is clean of clutter and you can take a sigh of relief knowing that you are an official child life internship candidate!

See…that’s not so bad right? It’s an overwhelming process, but doable, I promise. Like I said, I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing. I organized, prioritized and planned according to what made most sense to me. If you have suggestions, please pass them this way! Questions? Ask 🙂

Good luck to all my fellow child life students who submitted applications for the Fall internship season!! Fingers crossed for us all! 🙂

2 thoughts on “The Struggle: Part 4a

  1. Hey girl! I am so glad I stumbled upon your blog! I am in the same boat– unaffiliated and looking for internships! I am in the middle of creating my list at the moment. But, like you mentioned, most hospitals do not take unaffiliated students. How were you able to find so many? Just looking for a little guidance here! Thanks 🙂


    1. I am so glad you are glad to have found me! It was a very long process if I’m being honest. Start with the Child Life Council’s list of hospitals – that’s your best way to start. After you’ve made that starting list, just google search Child Life internship and things along those lines and see what hospitals you can find from there. When I first started I was really overwhelmed too but I got in contact with a lot of different hospitals and asked them directly what they offer/require. Also, a lot of hospitals in the States have a separate page/PDF on their websites for their application process/requirements which I found to be super helpful. Hope this helps!! Shoot me an email if you wanna chat more 🙂


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