HCOP Internship Opportunities

Each student spends the majority of the day in the department to which he or she is assigned. At 3:00 pm, all the students meet together to attend lectures related to rehabilitation and hospital care. Students also meet for weekly small group conferences to have discussions about medical ethics and problems faced by individuals with various types of handicaps and disabilities. Students may be placed in any one of the buildings that are part of the NYU Medical Center System such as NYU Langone Hospital, Hospital for Joint Disease, Bellevue Hospital. All group activities will take place at the main campus, NYU Langone Medical Center.

Departments and Supervisors

NYU Langone Medical Center prides itself on having a world-renowned faculty and staff. In many cases, students will be working with people who are the leaders of their specialties. The following departments will be available during the summer of 2015:

Advanced Practice/Nurse Practitioner Physical Therapy
Clinical Nutrition and Food Services Psychology Research
Diagnostic Radiology Rehabilitation Medicine
Emergency Medicine Social Work
Horticultural Therapy Speech Pathology
Nursing Therapeutic Recreation & Creative Arts Therapy
Occupational Therapy Vocational Counseling


Emergency Medicine: The goal of the Emergency Medicine rotation is to provide students an exposure to the practice of Emergency Medicine. He/she will spend approximately 50% of their time in the Emergency Department; shadowing the physicians, nurses, residents, medical students and other staff members and participating in all educational conferences and rounds. Additionally, they will spend the remaining 50% of their time on various clinical services that interface with the ED. This may include rotations with Pediatrics, Neurology, Stroke Service, Sports Medicine , Ethics and other disciplines.

Clinical Nutrition and Food Services: When assigned to the nutrition department in either NYU Langone Medical Center or Hospital for Joint Disease, students spend half of their time shadowing nutritionists around the hospital and half of their time working in the hospital’s food service facilities. While shadowing nutritionists around the hospital, students have the opportunity to read charts and observe the entire medical team in action through rounds and conferences. They observe patient interviews and the nutritional counseling of patients. While working in the hospital’s food service facilities, students have the opportunity to prepare food in the kitchen and aid in the preparation of the hospital’s food service budget.

"I followed different registered dietitians in different departments and specialties, including Transplant, Pediatrics, Oncology, Prenatal Intensive Care Unit, and the Natal Intensive Care Unit. In this way, I learned a great deal about the jobs carried out by registered dietitians. I also tested food trays and took the temperatures of food pods in the Food Service area. I evaluated and measured the ingredients in food products served in the cafeteria, and re-evaluated the nutritional facts on cafeteria menus."

Diagnostic Radiology: Students rotate through four subspecialty areas within diagnostic radiology such as thoracic, abdominal, pediatric, musculoskeletal and neuroimaging. Students shadow either a medical student or resident in the mornings observing readouts of both inpatient and outpatients’ studies, such as plain films, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging or fluoroscopic procedures. At noon, students attend case-based conferences and didactic lectures. Students are encouraged to attend interdisciplinary conferences pertinent to their rotation. Orientation and rotation assignments are overseen by Dr. Maria Shiau, Director of Medical Student Education in Radiology.

Horticultural Therapy: The horticultural therapy program works with both pediatric and adult patients in Rusk Institute’s greenhouse and garden. Patients develop and use their skills and abilities through the art and science of growing plants. The Horticultural Therapy department also works with disabled adults to gain job skills When students participate as assistants in this department, they will learn how to work with people of different abilities. The work is challenging and fun, but it also demands flexibility and willingness to play in the soil. Students are often given the opportunity to teach their own class.

Nursing: Students spend the day learning about various medications and procedures within a specialized nursing setting. Students have a great deal of patient contact because a lot of time is spent visiting with and talking to patients. Students also get to see the interactions between doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals. Some students will be placed on floors where they can observe the many different staff nurses at work on the floor, whereas other students are placed with one nurse practitioner and shadow them throughout their day seeing inpatients and outpatients. Some students will also have the opportunity to observe surgeries if desired.

"It was way more than I expected – I have nothing but compliments! "

Occupational Therapy: Some students are assigned to work in the occupational therapy department at the Rusk Institute and other students are assigned to work in the occupational therapy department at the Hospital for Joint Diseases. Students have daily contact with patients as they observe and actively help and assist with patient treatment. They often aid therapists in preparing material and equipment necessary for treatment. The students have the opportunity to observe and ask many questions.

"I followed different therapists and got to ask a ton of questions, and was even able to view a total knee replacement. I assisted with some daily chores such as clean-up after therapy sessions, and was taught how to read patient charts. Overall, the experience was very hands-on, and I had a lot of interaction with the patients."

Pharmacy: Students work in the various hospital pharmacies and assist in various tasks, as well as shadowing pharmacists on rounds. Working in a hospital pharmacy and a retail division gives a student a broad range of diverse job characteristics to observe and participate in. Research projects are also available.

"I worked in manufacturing with the pharmacy technicians for a week. I then moved on to clinical pharmacy and went on transplant rounds. Other days I was part of the investigational pharmacy, satellite pharmacy, unit dosing, and clean room. "

Physical Therapy: Some students are assigned to work in the physical therapy department at the Rusk Institute and other students are assigned to work in the physical therapy department at the Hospital for Joint Diseases or Bellevue Hospital. There are a number of departments under the umbrella of physical therapy (i.e. pediatric, adult, inpatient, outpatient, acute, cardiac, pulmonary, vestibular, etc.). Students have daily contact with patients as they observe and actively help and assist with patient treatment. They often aid therapists in preparing material and equipment necessary for treatment. The students have the opportunity to observe and ask many questions.

"I followed a therapist as she went from patient to patient. She explained to me each patient’s chart before beginning a therapy session with that patient, and taught me about certain precautions and different types of ailments related to each therapy performed. I assisted with the exercises performed by the therapist, and was shown how to evaluate the patient as well as how to record patient information in a chart."

Psychology Research: The student has the opportunity to become involved in the research of a clinical psychologist. The student may help to recruit subjects, administer and score tests, and document data. Students also have patient interaction as they observe the psychologists while they conduct treatments. Students in this department are usually given two month placements.

Rehabilitation Medicine: Students have the opportunity to attend rounds and conferences alongside attending physicians and residents at Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine, Bellevue Hospital, and Hospital for Joint Diseases. They are able to track the progress of the patients that they see during rounds and discuss during conferences by observing their various therapy sessions.

"I followed the unit chief resident, who works for the department’s attending physician, while she did some computer work and managed and assisted the first-year residents and medical students. She talked me through the physical medicine and rehabilitation procedures, explained the medical conditions that I was witnessing, and discussed possible treatments. Every morning, at 8am, I went on Grand Rounds with the doctors, and throughout the day, I sat-in on lectures and patient evaluation sessions. I learned a lot, but it is important to ask questions! Often, the doctors are very busy, and I reminded them of my presences by speaking up, taking initiative, and tagging along."

Social Work: Students have the opportunity to follow a social worker while they meet with inpatients and outpatients. They learn how to assess clients and even have the opportunity to write summaries and comments about the patients that they meet with. Students often are given the opportunity to practice counseling and evaluation by way of staff members acting out characters/scenarios for the students.

"I did a lot of observing – I observed the clinics at the Center for Children and followed the supervisor as she talked with ACS, provided care services, worked with insurance companies, and recorded data. I also went on rounds and observed the assessment of incoming and current patients and how to read patient charts. I observed patient interactions and sessions and the many aspects of the processes required to help the patients with concrete and emotional needs. I also gained a better understanding of all that is required for assisting patients after they leave the hospital, and how to make easier the lives of patients."

Speech-Language Pathology: Some students are assigned to work at the Rusk Institute and other students are assigned to work at the Hospital for Joint Diseases or Bellevue Hospital. Students spend time observing speech therapy sessions and evaluative procedures such as modified barium swallows through a daily in-service training and participate as part of the rehabilitation team. Students may have the opportunity to observe both pediatric and adult cases.

"I spent two weeks at the pediatric speech department and two weeks at the adult speech department. I had the ability to observe the sessions of various therapists, as well as perform clerical work for a portion of the day. I also observed therapy sessions at the Cochlear Center, Swallowing Center, and Head and Neck Center, allowing me to see the diversity of workplaces for a speech language pathologist. "

Therapeutic Recreation & Creative Arts Therapy: Students may be placed in a number of different areas of therapeutic recreation. They take children to the other departments when they have classes. Students play with children using various therapeutic toys and sometimes participate in arts and crafts projects during free time. The children thoroughly enjoy the individual attention they receive. There is also time for outings throughout the month, intended to boost self-esteem and confidence. For adult recreational therapy, the functions of the student are basically the same with adjustments made to the age and maturity level of the patient.

  • Music Therapy
  • Art Therapy

Vocational Counseling: Students have the opportunity to observe vocational counselors as they assist patients in re-entering society with a newly acquired disability or handicap, or assist adults born with a disability in entering the work force. Students may have the chance to sit-in on counseling sessions, during which they might assist patients in practicing tasks of daily living or watch as counselors aid patients in revising their resumes with respect to their individual handicaps or in regaining functions crucial to their former careers. This is a great placement for students interested in a career in social services.