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Practical experiences with young children (6 wks. – 6/9 yrs.) and their families while earning academic credit.

Welcoming Students from: Human Development & Family Studies, Early Childhood Education, Rec/Park and Tourism Management, Rehab Human Services, and Psychology.


At University Park, in the HDFS Children's Programs, The Bennett Family Center and Child Care Center at Hort Woods. Providing Early Care and Education for children of students, faculty and staff, ages 6 weeks through 5 years (through 9 yrs. for summer camps).

Who might apply

We are looking for dependable students who are open to Emergent Curriculum, Reggio Emilia techniques, The Project Approach, and The Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports Program at high quality early childhood programs ( We need individuals who are truly interested and fascinated in the development of infants, toddlers, preschoolers and/or Kindergarten-3rd graders and are dedicated to working in a team with other professionals.

  • Students are scheduled 9 hours daily (with 1 hour break) and are expected to attend monthly staff meetings in the evenings.
  • Interns will work the programs’ operating schedule ( as opposed to the semester schedule. This may vary slightly from the requirements of some college semesters.
  • During orientation, students will complete a mandatory Orientation to Child Care through Better Kid Care
  • Master Teachers in the classroom will mentor students and student teachers.
  • A file with the following is required: current Physical, TB test, 3 clearances (costs for these are the student's responsibility), PSU Mandated Reporter Training, PSU clearances, and two letters of reference.

What you'll do

Intern/Student Teacher duties and responsibilities vary depending on the classroom to which you are assigned. You will be asked to participate as part of a team with Master Teachers and staff in the daily care and education of young children. You will work with individual children, small groups of children, and the larger group in the learning environment. You will have the opportunity to observe, assess needs, and plan developmentally appropriate activities to meet needs and interests of the children. You will work with parents, complete conferences and utilize technology in the implementation of your work.

What we'll offer you

You will gain experience in all aspects of working with children in the learning environment: physical, social-emotional, cognitive, language/literacy and creative. You will set goals for yourself and plan activities for children. You will participate in weekly staff meetings and staff training sessions, you will complete a case study on a child of your choosing, work on their developmental assessment and complete a parent conference with the child’s family. And best of all you will be someone important in the life of a child and their family.

Other possible options

Today, Early Care and Education programs have a broad spectrum of responsibilities. The needs of children, their families and the community they live in affect early brain development, which in turn can help secure a more sustainable society. At the Children’s Programs you can opt to participate in not only the classroom, but connections within the programs to child behavior, family support, community engagement and/or program management. Please discuss these interests with our office if you are interested in any of these specific areas.

How to apply

Download and complete the Intern/Student Teaching Application and mail it to Wendy Whitesell, Internship and Grants Coordinator for HDFS Children’s Programs in 302B HHD East, University Park, PA 16802, or scan and email to