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Family and Consumer Sciences

College of Education and Professional Studies

Katy Tenhulzen, M.S., CCLS

Family and Child Life
Director, Child Life Undergraduate Program


Office: Michaelsen 225
Office phone: 509-963-2767

Current CWU students can schedule an appointment with Prof. Tenhulzen. Prospective students, please e-mail Prof. Tenhulzen to schedule an appointment.

Education & Certifications:

M.S., Family and Child Life, Central Washington University 
B.S., Human Development and Family Studies

Certified Child Life Specialist

Courses I teach:

FCL 232: Child Development *
FCL 336: Parent Education and Guidance *
FCL 414: Coping with Loss and Grief
FCL 415: Therapeutic Play
FCL 416: Child Life I: Scope of Practice
FCL 417: Childhood Diseases and Disorders
FCL 418: Child Life II: Impact of Child Hospitalization
FCL 492: Family and Child Life Practicum

* offered online

About me:

I am thrilled to be part of the fantastic Family and Child Life team at Central. I have lived on the west side of the mountains for most of my life, and the Ellensburg community and CWU has become a beloved second home for me.

As a Certified Child Life Specialist since 2001, I had the privilege of working with patients and families at Seattle Children’s Hospital for over a decade. During this time, I co-authored the book “Upside Down and Backwards: A Sibling’s Journey Through Childhood Cancer” which was published through the American Psychological Association.

As a Certified Parent Coach, I taught at Lake Washington Institute of Technology as a Parenting Educator prior to coming to CWU. My academic interests include interpersonal neurobiology, emotional intelligence, stress and coping, and family cohesion. My research interests include the efficacy of child life services, coping in health care settings, and patients’ reentry into the school system after hospitalization.

I am the director of the undergraduate Child Life program, so please contact me with any questions about the program.

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