CofC Master of Science in Child Life Program

Master of Science in Child Life

This week our first years had a conference day with the child life specialists at MUSC! We learned about inpatient vs. outpatient child life settings, medical play, procedural preparation and more! It is hard to believe that Summer 1 is almost over and then they will be second years!

Two of our totally amazing alums-they were not in the same class, but they share the same CofC heart! These Child Life specialists are making camp and the world a better place for children and families.

And just like that, two years have flown by. Well done MS in Child Life class of 2019! They are off to do great things, taking with them a piece of our hearts ❤️

Congratulations to our class of 2019!! We are SO proud of each one of you!

The Teddy Bear Clinic researchers are finishing up the data collection process, and then we will be analyzing it in the next few weeks! They have had a great time working with the students at the ECDC!

Our first years recently finished their first year of graduate school! They are halfway to their Masters degrees and we are so proud of them!
And our second years are finishing up internships and are graduating soon! So exciting!

The last #StudentSpotlight of the semester! I’m Hannah!
I am completing my child life internship this semester at Children’s of Alabama in Birmingham. I graduated from Millsaps College in 2017 with my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and I have loved completing my Masters degree at college of Charleston! I I am completing my rotations in cardiology and pediatric intensive care and I have learned so much and have absolutely loved it!

Happy Easter! Wishing you and your families peace and happiness on this day!🐰🐣💐
#happyeaster #childlife #cofcchildlife

Therapeutic Play Thursday!
Foot painting! This activity can help promote activities of daily living such as walking by encouraging children to participate in an ambulation intervention!

Some of our graduate students started their teddy bear clinic research this week! They are using medical play to teach preschoolers about healthcare! The four stations of the clinic are focused on prevention, medical personnel, medical equipment, and what to do when you’re sick. We are so proud of them!

Happy #StudentSpotlight, I’m Annie!
I have my bachelors degree in Human Development and Family Sciences from UGA (Go Dawgs!) and I am lucky enough to finish up my Masters of Child Life degree at CofC! The coursework and mentorship provided at CofC has prepared me immensely for internship! I have been able to apply my theoretical knowledge to the clinical setting and grow in my child life skills! I can’t wait to see how I continue to grow during my last 2 weeks of internship!

#MotivationMonday In honor of the child life conference this weekend! Thank you to the keynote speaker, Jason Wolf, for bringing this to us in the opening session! #tocareishuman

Our wonderful program director, Susan, and one of our professors/CCLS at MUSC, Morgan!

We are having an amazing time in the windy city at the Association of Child Life Professionals National Conference!

Spread kindness, it’s contagious!

Therapeutic Play Thursday!
Elephant toothpaste! This activity promotes choice and provides a sensory experience, while also giving children the opportunity to engage in small world play in the foam!

PEACE begins with...

Check out the new Peace Initiative from the children at the College of Charleston, NE Miles Early Childhood Development Center!
The children have collected responses to what “Peace begins with..."
Watch this adorable video below!

As part of the 2019 Peace Initiative at the College of Charleston, the students at ECDC and Memminger Elementary invite community members to participate in t...

Happy #StudentSpotlight, I’m Natalia!
“I graduated from Francis Marion University with my Bachelor of Science in Psychology and am so grateful to have the opportunity to get my MSCL degree at the College of Charleston! I am currently completing my internship at Advent Health for Children (AHFC) in Orlando, Florida!

My first few rotations have been in MRI, Hematology/Oncology, Adult Consult, and now Inpatient Radiology. I will continue my internship journey in the Pediatric Observation Unit, Intensive Care Unit, and Cardiac Intensive Care Unit.

Each unit has presented a variety of valuable experiences where I have gained and strengthened skills that I will use in my practice as a Certified Child Life Specialist. I can’t believe how fast my internship experience has flown by but I am so excited to continue to grow and learn as much as I can during the tail end of my internship journey at AHFC!”

Great things never come from comfort zones!

Our MS in Child Life program director, Susan Simonian, won the 2018-2019 Graduate School’s Outstanding Faculty of the Year! We love you Susan, thank you for all that you do to make this program a success!

Our students and child life specialists had a great time at the MUSC child life carnival today!

Two of our amazing alumnae, working together as CCLSs at The University of Virginia Children’s Hospital. Way to celebrate child life month!

This week we are celebrating child life at MUSC! Yesterday, some of our first years participated in Be a Doctor Day! Children were able to come to the atrium and play the role of a doctor! They practiced giving their patients IVs, checking vitals, and giving x-rays!

Happy #SecondYearSpotlight, I’m Hannah!
“I have a bachelors degree in Human Development and Family Science from the University of Georgia (Go Dawgs!!), and I am finishing up my Masters of Science in Child Life degree at the College of Charleston. I am currently at Wolfson Children’s Hospital in Jacksonville Florida for my child life internship. My first rotation was on the Neuroscience/GI Unit, and I am now in Radiology for my outpatient experience. I have enjoyed applying all of my developmental and theoretical knowledge from CofC while preparing and supporting patients and families at Wolfson. I have been able to develop my skills in rapport building, preparation, procedural support, normalization, and play as I strive towards improving the psychosocial wellbeing of patients and families at the hospital each day. I have already learned and grown so much, and I look forward to all that is left to come during my second half of internship. I feel so lucky to be able to learn from both CofC and Wolfson as I continue my journey to becoming a CCLS!”

The Graduate School of the University of Charleston, S.C.

Congratulations to our Poster Session Winners!

Science, Mathematics, and Business Winners Christopher Brown (M.S. in Environmental Studies) and Jessica Karan (M.S. in Marine Biology)

Humanities, Social Sciences, Arts, and Education Winner Emily Jaskwhich (M.A. in History)

People's Choice Winners Katherine Lowe, Maura Burns, Chelsie Lang, and Hailey-Marie Ragan (M.S. in Child Life)

It’s our first day back from spring break and there is only one more month left in the semester! Embracing a positive mindset and believing you can is half of the challenge! Finish the next few weeks of classes or internship strong!

Therapeutic Play Thursday!
Shaving cream activities provide children with a great open-ended, sensory experience! It is developmentally stimulating while encouraging freedom of expression and imaginative play!

[03/19/19]   Happy #SecondYearSpotlight, it’s Abigail Davis and Maddie Kinzel!
“We are completing our internship at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. Abigail is completing rotations in Radiation Oncology, Solid Tumor Clinic, and Leukemia/Lymphoma inpatient unit. Maddie is completing rotations in Solid Tumor/Neuro-Oncology, Assessment Triage, and Bone-Marrow Transplant. We love our experiences here and can’t wait for the rest of our internship!”

So proud of our alumnus!

Certified Child Life Specialist Sammi Davis transferred here from a Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center in New York City in January. We caught up with Sammi to learn more:

Why Child Life?
At age 10, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease which involves a treatment plan of injections into the scalp. No one explained what was happening to my body, why I was losing my hair, or what my treatment would entail. I was held down by multiple adults on my medical team and I was never offered choices, explanations, or more comforting positions. From that moment, I knew I wanted to pursue a career that advocated for pediatric patients. Years later, I stumbled upon a blog written by a Certified Child Life Specialist and my career journey began!

Favorite thing about working here?
Definitely being a part of this team—both within Child Life and within our healthcare system. We are committed and passionate about providing the best overall care to patients and families. I have the pleasure to work alongside and learn from my Child Life team and the multidisciplinary staff! When I get to help a child cope with something difficult, I know this is the right place for me.

What’s special about a Child Life career?
Becoming a Child Life Specialist is challenging—but it is worth every second. This field can be incredibly competitive, but we play a vital role in the healthcare system. While we use play to meet children where they are developmentally, we play with a purpose. When you see us making slime, it is actually a sensory activity. When we play “doctor,” we are familiarizing children with materials they might experience here. We see the best and the worst moments in families’ lives. It is both a privilege and an honor to stand next to them during these times.

What should we know about Child Life?
When I introduce myself, most patients and families haven’t heard of a Child Life Specialist, or they may ask how long I’ve been volunteering my time. We are an extra layer of support in the healthcare field. We are educated and clinically trained professionals in child development, coping styles, therapeutic play, bereavement and loss, and the developmental impact of illness and injury in medical and community settings. While we do have the ‘fun’ job in the hospital, we also hold a clinical role with a goal to minimize distress and maximize coping/development. We are a resource that is available to every patient and family at Prisma Health Children’s Hospital-Midlands!

Motivation Monday! The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time!

Two of our first-years Olivia and Hailey-Marie are having a blast this weekend at Victory Junction! This is a great camp for children with serious or chronic illnesses to just be kids and have FUN!

[03/15/19]   Earlier this week, first year students presented at the Graduate School’s Research Poster Session. We are very excited to share that their project won the “People’s Choice Award!” Their project is focused on developing and facilitating an interactive teddy bear clinic for preschoolers to promote healthcare education. We are so proud of their hard work, and we can’t wait to see their results!

Child Life represented yesterday at the Graduate School Research Poster Presentation! A few of our first-year students are researching the effects of child-directed teddy bear clinics on preschoolers’ knowledge of healthcare! Way to go!

Come find us in cougar mall, we’ll be here until 2pm talking all things play and child life! De-stress with us with some play-doh, bubbles, and kinetic sand! #cofc #cofcgraduateschool #cofcchildlife

[03/11/19]   Come out TOMORROW to our child life table in Cougar Mall!! We’ll have lots of materials to help you de-stress through play, and we’d love to help you learn more about the child life program at CofC!

Our first years had another great weekend at Shannon’s Hope Camp! We love partnering with Bridges for End-of-Life and walking alongside some brave kiddos as they work through their grief!
#cofc #cofcchildlife #childlifestudents #griefcamp

On International Women’s Day, we celebrate the incredible women who we have had the privilege of educating and mentoring in our MS in Child Life program.

Getting ready for our child life month activities!
Come visit our child life table to de-stress through play with the child life program! Tuesday March 12th from 10-3 in cougar mall!
#cofchildlife #childlifemonth

Happy #SecondYearSpotlight, I’m Lexi!
“I did my undergrad at The Ohio State University and was so grateful for the opportunity to get my masters at the College of Charleston! I am doing my internship at Children’s Health in Dallas, Texas. My first rotation is in cardiology and I am loving it so far!”

Over the weekend, some of our students got to help run MUSC’s Teddy Bear ER Clinic, where children got to bring their teddy bear for a wellness checkup or sick visit! It was a great way to familiarize children with medical equipment as they got their bears all healed up! Our child life girls had a BEARY good time volunteering and playing at this event! 🐻🏩

#MotivationMonday! If you’re reading this, I challenge you to practice compassion today!

Shannon, one of our amazing second-year students, is currently completing her internship at AdventHealth for Children! She recently finished one of her rotations in the NICU! We are so proud of her!

Some of our first years had the opportunity to run the child life table yesterday at Discover MUSC, a career day for high school students exploring different healthcare professions! They were hard at work recruiting new child life students!

HAPPY CHILD LIFE MONTH! Keep an eye out for special events and activities this month to celebrate child life!

Today is Baby Sleep Day!
Let’s celebrate by spreading the ABC’s of safe sleeping! Babies should sleep: Alone, on their Backs, in a safe Crib!
Be sure to check out the Pediatric Sleep Council’s FB live as they will be answering questions all day!

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