Children and Family Internship Program

CFP Staff
COVID-19 Update: For the Fall 2021 semester, we are planning on returning to all face-to-face operations. Some activities may be conducted virtually if necessary. Details will be given upon inquiry.

Students at KSU and surrounding universities from all majors applying to work/intern at CFP will go through a rigorous training in our manualized behavioral intervention. Applied behavior analysis is used by the interns working with children in academic and social settings while simultaneously their parents attend behavior parenting strategies workshops. Graduate Research Assistants and Interns have the opportunity to: 

  • Use learned behavioral techniques, during programs such as our Social Skills Groups, to prevent future academic, behavioral, and social failure. 
  • Co-lead parenting workshops and in-services. 
  • Assist with behavioral intervention training and manual design for childcare centers, schools, and after school programs and conduct onsite functional behavioral analysis reports to assess implementation. 
  • Design and teach material presented for the Student-Parent Program. 
  • Assist with various CFP projects such as grant writing and workshop building. 

Application Checklist

  • Successfully meet the requirements for an internship through the home department
  • Complete the application form
  • Submit resume and application form to Dr. Allison Garefino
  • Pass a criminal background check through HR and absorb the costs

How Will the Students be Evaluated?

Students must:

  • Demonstrate an ability to recall basic facts, terminology, and principles important in the various areas of behavior modification and the prevention of negative outcomes for children with behavior problems. 
  • Be able to apply functional behavior analysis knowledge to real world situations using a scientific approach to behavior. 
  • Be able to integrate the information learned during training and implement it while delivering training and behavior modification in real world settings. 

Volunteer Opportunities

CFP also works with students interested in completing volunteer hours by working on current projects and shadowing experts in the field. We will work with students to place them in the area that best fits their needs and skills. Students in KSU’s Honors College can complete volunteer hours towards the Applied Learning Experience HLE.  

Intern Testimonials

I've been interning at the Children and Family Programs at KSU from August to December. During the past four months, we've been training and learning about behavioral modification (BMOD) treatment. The treatment is directed towards children with behavioral problems, like those with ADHD, in order to help produce a positive behavior. BMOD is a beneficial evidence-based treatment because it reduces children's problematic behavior, like noncompliance, while reducing the need for high doses of ADHD medication. Behavior is modified by setting rules and expectations, and modify antecedents, which are events that occur before a specific behavior.

This semester, we've received a grant to help students who parent at KSU. We've provided resources in the Cobb County and surrounding areas in the five areas of support: social capital, early childhood education, post-secondary and employment pathways, economic assets, and health and wellbeing. We've also provided them time management and self-care tips. Each session, we give the parents behavioral modification training. The student parents are all so eager about learning new ways to get their children to comply and behave. The student parents are always ready to share their experiences and tips as parents.

The pandemic has made us adapt to online learning and has affected us all. We're prepared for next semester and any changes that may happen. 

Amanda Winkjer

Undergraduate Intern

During my time with the Children and Families Program (CFP), I was able to sit in on meetings with our community partners and community members. Through these avenues, we established relationships with other colleges, such as Georgia Northwest Technical College, who were also looking to create a Student-Parent Program, and were able to generate awareness of the services CFP offers amongst caretakers in Cobb County. These meetings have made me aware of the amount of time that must be dedicated to meetings with partners and stakeholders. However, this awareness gained through experience has only reaffirmed my interest in community collaboration as an aspect of my future career.

We also worked with students who are parents during our six-week Student-Parent Program. We provided the parents with techniques – such as commands or planned ignoring – to assist them in managing their children’s behavior and taught them how thoughts and feelings can influence behavior. It was encouraging to watch the parents develop greater understanding of the techniques and share their experiences implementing them.

To assist the student-parents with other hardships they might face, we began to create a website toolkit containing five categories of resources: early childhood education, economic assets, physical health and wellbeing, postsecondary and employment programs, and social capital. Our efforts primarily focused on social capital and early childhood education; however, as these categories were what student-parents identified as their greatest needs. To me, this effort was wonderful because it was not only oriented toward those enrolled in the program but also comprehensive in its scope for when different needs might arise in the future. I am therefore sure that the student-parents will be grateful when they receive this toolkit.

Grace Bowe

Undergraduate Intern

These past few months as an intern for the Children and Family Programs at Kennesaw State University, I’ve developed an understanding of all three main tenants of social-emotional learning and the basics of behavior modification. Before the program, I had little knowledge of behavior modification and the obstacles that student-parents go through daily. I had somewhat of an understanding that it was difficult, but wording it as difficult is not enough.

In each session, parents were taught great methods that could help them have a better understanding of their child’s emotions and set great relationships with them. The student-parent sessions where I got to understand their perspectives and learn more about parenting techniques along their side. It was so much fun participating in the student-parent sessions and getting to know some of them and their stories. Not only do I have this in mind for when I bear children, but I have it in mind for when I become an educator myself. I am always looking for future ideas and experiences that I can integrate into my future career, that is why I am so fortunate to be able to get the education from the program and learn so much.

Although the spread of COVID has taken over the physical opportunities I could have gotten from experiencing this program in person, I still believe I got the best kind of training and comprehension of training. And there have been some ideas for the upcoming semester that I will be a part of. I was fortunate to sit in every meeting and get to know the wonderful, kind team. I also have participated in some grant meetings and writings. I am looking into continuing to gain more experience from such a helpful team.

Julissa Tello

Undergraduate Intern

I have learned so much over the past four months. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to intern with Children and Family Programs. As a nontraditional student who is also a parent of college-aged children, I have especially enjoyed my experience working with the Student-Parent Ambassador program. I had attempted finishing my degree when my children were in elementary school, but decided to put it off once again as their activities became more of a priority than my own. If a support group for student parents was available at that time, I might have been more inclined to stick it out. Working with the student parents in the program was a beneficial way to see areas in which KSU could better meet the needs of its students. There is a great need for a childcare center on campus. If KSU were able to provide childcare then it would meet the needs of the student parents as well as provide an employment opportunity for the students who could potentially staff it. I also benefited from the behavior modification techniques and time management skills that Children and Family Programs provides to its student parents. 

Melissa Hooper

Undergraduate Intern

Overall, this program has been of great value to me personally and education wise. From this program, I gained a great amount of knowledge from the internship and sessions. One of the most impactful things I realized is how beneficial the resources and tools given at the Children and Family (CFP) program is to student-parents, and how crucial it is for them to have them.

{CFP is} a program I never knew existed at Kennesaw State University (KSU) until I came across it from my internship advisor. They have valuable information for student-parents, but it's unfortunate many schools don’t have a program like this one. This was of my importance to me, because often we see institutions/ universities don’t have any resources or tools for their student-parents; they see them as just students. It made me realize how many student-parents are missing out on beneficial information for them as parents and students, and the importance of having a program like this.

This program provides amplitude of resources and tools to help individuals succeed academically and as parents. Furthermore, I found these sessions helpful for the student-parents and myself. Each session was broken down and focused on one topic at time. I found creating a toolkit and resources for the student-parent of importance. Parents have all the information discussed in the sessions handy and can reference back to it as needed.

Midelvia Contreras

Undergraduate Intern

To learn more about the internship process, please call (470) 578-2233 or email Dr. Allison Garefino at 

CFP Interns