NEWS | October 9, 2018

UC Davis Child Life Internship program receives ACLP accreditation


The UC Davis Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department's internship program was just granted clinical internship accreditation by the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP). This designation has been given to only three children’s hospitals in the state. UC Davis Children’s Hospital is the only ACLP-accredited child life internship program in Northern California.

Photo of ACLP accreditation logo

The accreditation is a voluntary, two-step process of self-study and external review of expertise in 18 different categories that support quality instruction and teaching. It also proves extensive program and staff knowledge, as well as outstanding provision of child life standards of care.

The accreditation process was led by child life specialist Emily McDaniel supported by the department’s internship accreditation workgroup of three additional child life specialists and overseen by Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department manager Diana Sundberg. This accreditation underscores the department’s continuous quality improvement and dedication to learning and professional practice within the child life profession.

"We are truly proud of our achievement and I am impressed and grateful for Emily’s drive to see this through to completion," said Sundberg. "The process from beginning to end took us about a year and a half and we feel confident the accreditation has only raised our caliber of clinical training and will model for interns the drive for professional excellence.”

The UC Davis Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department offers two 15-week, 600-hour clinical internships each year, under the direct supervision of experienced certified child life specialists. The internship curriculum is based on standards set by ACLP. Students undergo rigorous training in preparation for future careers and certification examinations.

The UC Davis Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department helps to minimize the anxiety of hospitalization, increase understanding and strengthen coping skills while helping children to continue their typical growth and development.

UC Davis Children's Hospital is the Sacramento region's only nationally ranked, comprehensive hospital providing care for infants, children, adolescents and young adults with primary, subspecialty and critical care. It includes the Central Valley's only pediatric emergency department and level I pediatric trauma center, which offers the highest level of care for its critically ill patients, as well as a level I children's surgery center. The 129-bed children's hospital includes the state-of-the-art 49-bed neonatal and 24-bed pediatric intensive care and pediatric cardiac intensive care units. For more information, visit