Balancing Premed Studies and Volunteering for Medical School

Balancing Premed Studies and Volunteering for Medical School

Balancing the demands of premed studies and volunteering for medical school will be the first of many challenges you will face in your medical career. Successfully completing the demanding premed coursework and recording a significant number of volunteer hours is required if you are to be selected for the nation’s increasingly competitive medical schools. It is the combination of skills and academic credentials that will make you a stellar candidate.

Don’t Put Off Volunteering

You should begin looking for opportunities to volunteer as soon as you identify a passion for a career in medicine. Many premed students are aware of the importance  of their volunteer hours to the medical school application and acceptance process; however they put it off believing they don’t have the time or that they’ll get to it eventually. What these students fail to realize is that even a few hours of volunteer work each month will add up to an impressive number over the years. Don’t wait to volunteer; start now.

Look for Volunteer Work in the Medical Field

Don’t be like some premed students who choose to volunteer for whatever is available, this is a careless approach which isn’t likely to yield the results you are looking for. Instead, consider areas of interest and look for volunteer opportunities in related fields. Better yet, consider volunteering in a medical clinic, a healthcare facility or with the Red Cross. These medical-related experiences will benefit you in several ways:

Volunteering within the medical field allows you to build relationships that may be of help to you in later years as you continue to pursue your education and future career in medicine.

The firsthand medical-related experience is something that many of the other applicants won’t have.

This real world experience benefits you by helping you identify the specific area of medicine you want to pursue for your career.

Volunteering in the medical industry illustrates that you have some experience in the field, a requirement which most medical schools expect from qualified applicants.

It helps you develop an understanding of the real pressures and challenges that face you regularly as a medical professional.

Look for Leadership Opportunities

Leadership experience is another important aspect of your medical application. Regardless of the type of volunteer work you choose, look for opportunities to take on a leadership role. Build upon these experiences so that you will be in the best position when applying to the medical school of your choice.

Balancing premed studies and volunteering for medical school is a challenge. Figuring out how to meet those demands while taking on leadership responsibilities and maintaining your own personal and social obligations can be a daunting task. In order to succeed in these areas it is important that you develop strong time management skills. Prioritize those things which must be done and tackle those first,  learning to deliver great work while simultaneously letting go of any lingering need for perfection. These habits are what separate good medical school candidates from outstanding ones.

 

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” Very informative, gave me a new outlook on the medical school admission process and what it really takes to get in.” Anna

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