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Psychology - Child Life

About This Program

You’re patient, understanding, and empathetic. You want a career that’s all about helping others, especially children and adolescents. Psychology – Child Life may be the major for you.

Why Utica College

The Psychology - Child Life major at Utica College is an interdisciplinary program that enhances students’ understanding of children, adolescents, and their families in preparation for rewarding careers that focus on child growth and development. With an exceptionally accomplished faculty and excellent facilities, the major features an emphasis on research and applied knowledge, with many opportunities for internships and other real-world experiences.

Contact Information

Office of Admissions

(315) 792-3006

General Information


  • Major


  • B.S.


  • Utica Campus
Utica Excellence, Utica Value

Psychology - Child Life at Utica

Career Opportunities

The Psychology - Child Life program prepares graduates for career opportunities working with children and families in a variety of settings that include:
    • Hospitals
    • Hospice
    • Early Intervention
    • Child Care
    • Social Work and Human Services
    • Schools
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Award-Winning Program

A recipient of the prestigious Distinguished Service Award from the Association of Child Life Professionals (formerly the Child Life Council), the leading non-profit professional association serving child life specialists.
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Real-World Experience

Utica College's Psychology-Child Life program works with a myriad of schools and centers that provide students with real-life experiences through internships and fieldwork.

What You'll Learn

The Psychology - Child Life major prepares students to meet the psychological needs of children and adolescents in education and health and human service fields that support the healthy development of children and adolescents in a family-centered, relationship-based manner . The program is interdisciplinary with a curriculum that draws on psychology, early childhood education, sociology, and anthropology.  This major is appropriate for students who wish to continue their education at the graduate level in Child Life Specialty, Social Work, Education, Occupational Therapy, and other fields that build on child development theory and practice.

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Psychology - Child Life Faculty & Staff

A Degree That Works

Alumni of Utica College's Psychology-Child Life program find successful placements and build rewarding careers from coast to coast, including:


  • Kravis Children's Hospital at Mount Sinai - New York, NY
  • The Brooklyn Hospital Center
  • Sauquoit Valley Central School District
  • The Center - Utica, NY
  • Arnold Palmer Hospital - Orlando, FL
  • St. Christopher's Hospital for Children - Philadelphia, PA
  • Crouse Hospital - Syracuse, NY
  • CompassionNet - Rochester, NY
Utica College - DePerno Hall
Allison Della Penna 18 Psychology Child Life

From student to professional

Allison Della Penna '18, a Psychology – Child Life major with a concentration in Child Life Specialty paddled through the notoriously competitive waters of child life internship applications and interviews, opted for an internship at Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital in Syracuse, New York.

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Student Voices: Abigail David '15

A brief conversation with Abigail David '15 about the psychology - child life program, her experience as a member of the campus community, and her plans for the future.

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Dive Deeper

The Interprofessional Education (IPE) program at Utica College helps you develop a deeper understanding of a broad range of roles in the health professions so that you can effectively team up with practitioners in other disciplines to deliver outstanding patient care.

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Student Voices: Taylor Peters

Psychology - Child Life major Taylor Peters talks about her experience at Utica College and how she wants to make a difference for children in need.

Student Voices: Courtney Hryniowski

Psychology - Child Life major Courtney Hryniowski talks about her experience at UC, her passion for her program, and what motivates her.

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The 'lightbulb' moment

In her own words, Brittany Spaeth '06, Child Life Coordinator at University Health Care, discusses her experiences at Utica College and how they prepared her for a career helping children.

Psychology-Child Life Society

Psychology-Child Life Society

The campus Psychology-Child Life Society is open to all child life majors and other interested students. The purpose of the organization is to spread an awareness of the child life major throughout the campus and the community. Events during the year include recognition of Children and Health Care Week and the Week of the Young Child and participation in Make a Difference Day.  Throughout the year, the group sponsors bake sales, flower sales, and a booth in the College's Strebel Student Center. 

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