The Role of the Intern


This family life education program is designed for Family Science majors/minors and should be considered first when applying to internships. This program allows students to collaborate with the community in a real-world context to increase their professional competence and confidence. Students in other Behavioral Science majors, such as Psychology and Sociology, and students from other universities in related majors living in Utah Valley may also find this internship beneficial as part of their capstone experiences! Talk to your advisor or apply below to see if this internship might be a good fit for you!

Teaching family life education classes serve as the capstone experience for the Family Science major. The major is aligned with the Certified Family Life Educator credential offered by the National Council on Family Relations. Students develop knowledge in ten different content areas and achieve key student learning outcomes in preparation for this experience. 

Prior to this internship, Family Science students complete FAMS 4500, Family Life Education Methods, and are recommended to complete either FAMS 3000, Social Work Practice I, or FAMS 3050, Clinical Skills for Helping Professions. In these classes, students complete many relevant assignments such as a literature review, needs assessment, lesson guide, fact sheet,  even writing their own curriculum and practicing best teaching methods to a variety of audiences. However, this internship allows them to combine everything they have learned into a single, engaged, real-world environment. Students from other majors and universities will be paired with a Family Science student to co-facilitate a class and be trained and supervised every week to succeed in the field. 

The program includes both a family class and individual classes based on participants' ages. Interns co-teach these classes using curriculum that is evidenced-based and are supervised by UVU faculty and staff. Interns also work one-on-one with assigned families to personalize the program, help the families set and achieve goals, and address lingering concerns and offer resources as needed.

“I have loved the change in confidence in myself and getting to know the families! How could you not fall in love with these people? I have also loved everyone I have worked with and have a special place in my heart for all of my co-teachers!” - 2021 Intern

Helpful Links for Students

Frequently Asked Questions

Questions about entering the program and earning credit

How will this internship help me?

This is a special internship where you will have the opportunity to take everything you have learned and combine it into a single, engaged, real-world environment. Using an evidence-based, nationally recognized curriculum, you will teach both parents and children how to improve their interaction and emotional patterns within the family. Regardless of your career aspirations, this internship will help position you to be successful as you collaborate with the community and increase your professional competence and confidence.

How do I apply to become an intern?

Create a virtual interview teaching video and complete the “Stronger Families Project Internship Placement Form.” Instructions for completing both can be found on the Family Science 482R Practicum Application.

Once your placement form has been received, you will be contacted by the program director with your acceptance or denial status. Not all applicants are accepted due to limited available positions within the program. You will be given further instructions based on that decision.

What classes should I have taken before applying for this internship?

UVU Family Science students are required to successfully complete FAMS 4500 before participating in SFP. Some students may receive an exception and be allowed to take FAMS 4500 concurrently with the SFP Internship. It is preferred that students have also completed FAMS 3000 before participating in the internship.

It is preferable that student interns from other schools and programs have taken a family life education methods class, but it is not required.

What is my role as a Family Liaison?

Family Liaisons are assigned to work with individual families acting as advocates and mentors. As a Family Liaison you are responsible for making mid-weekly phone calls to your assigned families. This ongoing “coaching” helps the families establish and execute goals, allows you to check the family’s progress with homework, and encouraging their participation in the program.

Family Liaisons also teach individual classes with a co-coach. You may be assigned to function as a “Parent Class Coach” teaching the parent class, a “Teen Class Coach” teaching teenagers, a “Children’s Class Coach” teaching a children’s classes.

What does it mean to be a “Family Class” coach?

The Site Educational Coordinator (SEC) functions as a “Family Class Coach” teaching a 25-minute class each week to all the families. The SEC also functions in a supervisory position. The SEC sits in on other classes to make sure things are running smoothly, makes site arrangements, and conducts prebrief and debrief meetings at their site.

I'm a little hesitant about being a Family Liaison. How do you make sure it's not awkward?

Take time to genuinely get to know your families. Ask them questions, pay attention to their answers, and show excitement for the things they are excited about. You are their point of contact and you will form a trusted relationship over time that will be a highlight of your internship. Remember details that they share with you and follow up on things that you promised you would follow up on. Just be confident in your role and they will love you!

How do I get the hours required for my internship credit?

As a UVU 3-credit intern, it is expected that you will spend approximately 8 hours per week (a minimum of 120 hours) actively participating in training and in-field work. For most UVU 3-credit interns as well as interns from other institutions, you will be assigned to teach 2 different nights, often a different class each night, to provide you with a variety of teaching experiences. It is also expected that 1-2 hours a week will be spent completing online assignments related to professional development. Credit hours vary for interns from other universities and you will need to coordinate with your academic advisor and the SFP Managing Director to ensure you receive the hours to earn academic credit.

There is a specific document you will receive called “Hourly Breakdown” that maps exactly how you will receive credit and is based on the successful completion of each of the required activities. Most of your hours are earned by preparing and teaching family life education classes, making mid-week phone calls, and completing weekly progress reports. Completing the required activities in their entirety, and within the designated timeframe, will ensure that you get the hours required to obtain internship credit.

If there are any changes to your schedule, or to the condition of your health, that may interfere with your accessibility or with the physical demand of the internship, please contact the SFP Managing Director immediately.

As an intern, how can I make up missed hours?

Diligent attendance each week, including arriving on time and being present for the full allotted length of the evening’s event, is vital. We expect that you will make every effort to not miss. If you must miss, you can make up hours by subbing on another night or helping with special projects. However, it is a challenge to make up hours missed and, if you miss more than one week per semester, particularly toward the end of the semester, it will not be possible to make up the required hours needed for internship credit.

How do I record my hours and get them approved? 

Training is provided throughout the semester online and in meetings. Watching those training videos and attending weekly CC meeting is required and is another way you earn internship credit hours. In your training you will receive a step-by-step explanation for recording your hours.

Reporting hours worked is required. Failing to report hours may be grounds for failing the internship. You will need to be vigilant in keeping your timesheet updated and approved weekly. Logging hours in retrospect is not permissible.

Am I part of the Recruitment Team? And if so, what does it mean to be part of the Recruitment Team?

All interns are part of the Recruitment Team. During the early weeks of the semester, members of the Recruitment Team diligently find our program participants. Individually and collectively, they contact families previously waitlisted to invite them to register for the current semester. They also contact businesses and public entities throughout Utah to inform them of our program and to invite them to help advertise and promote the program. Members of the Recruitment Team help interested families get registered for our program.

What is CC Meeting? Is it mandatory that I attend?

C.C. stands for “Community Council” meeting because as a group, we council, train, discuss, problem solve, and answer questions to prepare you for your upcoming field experiences. We also reflect upon the program week by week and ask that you come prepared to talk about your experiences. CC Meeting is held in person each Monday. We discuss the curriculum and teaching strategies, successes and struggles, clinical issues and other items that need to be discussed. Former interns have reported the CC meeting is extremely informative and valuable. As such, attendance is required and is part of how you earn hours for academic credit. It is expected that you will not only attend but actively participate each week. If you must miss, prior to missing you will need to let the Program Manager know. You will be given an assignment to make up the time missed.

Questions about the program

Is there a virtual program offered as well as in-person?

Under the discretion of the Program Director, we will offer a virtual site in addition to in-person when staffing and space allow.

What are the different forms of communication used during the internship?

You will use email, Slack, Google Drive and Voice, and possibly Microsoft Teams during your time as an intern with SFP. Communication is a critical part of the internship and is one way you earn hours required to receive credit for the internship. The method of communication used is correlated with the role in which you are functioning. Weekly, you will correspond with your Site Educational Coordinator (SEC) via email and Slack. Slack and email is also used as a primary mode of communication between the Managing Team and all interns individually and collectively.

When you are functioning as a coach on your assigned night, you will communicate with your SEC, and other site personnel, using Slack.

Google Voice is used when making mid-weekly phone calls to families. Intern timesheets and weekly site reports are accessed and approved using Google Drive.

Microsoft Teams is used to deliver the program remotely to families in their home if a virtual program is offered.

Why will I be dropped from the internship if I don’t complete the agency paperwork?

You legally cannot interface with the families participating in the program without having our agency paperwork complete. At the beginning of the internship, you will need to complete the agency paperwork and submit it to the Managing Director or Faculty Supervisor. If it is not completed and turned in by the end of the first week of the semester, you will be dropped from the internship.

How do I get the curriculum used to teach my class?

Early in the internship you will be given access to a digital folder with all curriculum for the program. It is a revised version of the Family Wellness program “Survival Skills for Healthy Families” curriculum from FAMS 4500: Family Life Education Methods. UVU students will be familiar with it and certified to teach it. Students from other universities who intern with the program will be provided the curriculum and will team-teach with a certified student.

These lessons are copyrighted and should not be shared or distributed to anyone. You will sign a disclosure agreement that indicates you understand that the lessons used in SFP are copyrighted and cannot be used for any other purpose other than what is associated with the UVU Stronger Families Project. At the end of the program, your access to the folder will be revoked.

Where are the materials for my class and what do I need to bring for class each week?

Each site has a site box with handouts for each class. It will be a good idea for you to regularly check the box to see what content is already provided each week before you plan your lesson. There are things like markers and colored pencils provided as well. If you want additional handouts or any other materials, you are responsible to provide them.

Why can't I use the pages from the manual to teach from?

Preparing the lessons each week includes reducing the lessons to a few key points that you will teach (separate from your co-teacher) onto index cards. By doing so, it is expected that you will know the material well so you don't have to read it and can teach more effectively. If you teach from the original lessons, you won't be able to count your prep time toward your in-field hours needed for academic credit.

What time do I need to arrive at my site each week?

The first few weeks are a little hectic but keep contact with your site supervisor (SEC) and they will let you know what time you need to be at the site. Generally, for most interns, you need to be at your site by 6:00, dressed and ready to go.

What is the dress code, and what pants are appropriate?

Business casual with dark pants or skirt (black, dark brown or dark gray) no jeans or leggings. Pants or skirt need to be a solid color, no prints. You will wear SFP polo every week along with your nametag on the lanyard.

Who holds family liaisons accountable for their weekly family reports?

The Assistant Managing Director and your Site Education Coordinator (SEC) will remind you to complete the weekly reports, but ultimately it is your responsibility to complete the weekly reports. In doing so, you earn hours required for your internship credit.  

Who oversees the intern prebrief at the beginning of the evening and the debrief meeting at the end of the night? 

The Site Educational Coordinator (SEC) over your night.

What happens if a family cannot attend one week of the program?

If you know in advance that a family will be unable to attend one week, speak with your SEC about having them attend class on a different night of the week.

Where do the Toddler-Preschool Class Teachers come from? Are they under the same rules as the Interns?

The Toddler-Preschool Class teachers are different from the interns. They are on assignment from the FAMS 3800 class and are completing 20 hours of Service Learning. They don’t have the same dress code but should be in business casual. They need to arrive at 6:15 and be set up and ready to take the young children as soon as families arrive at site at. They keep the younger children in class until after all the classes are over around 8:00 pm. They clean up and leave immediately after and do not stay for debriefing.

Who is responsible for the Toddler-Preschool Class Teachers?

If there is a Service-Learning Coordinator at the site, they supervise the Toddler-Preschool teachers. Otherwise, it’s the Site Educational Coordinator. They will have them sign in and out for attendance and hours each week. They will check on them to see they are completing their class requirements and turn in a midterm and final report for them.

A group of interns in green shirts stand together, smiling