May 30, 2015
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In case I don't get in this cycle, I can still use this year for further improving my app for next cycle.
My current plan: full-time research and some clinical/non-clinical volunteering during the weekends
For scribing, I feel like I'm too late to apply for that since others on here have mentioned it takes close to 6 months to actually start and it requires a 2-yr part-time commitment; I'll still apply to this in case
I have also applied to 100+ other research positions in clinical/lab research assistantships in hospitals to see if I can get a better, more medically relevant position.

So I was wondering what are some other good, meaningful activities to do during the year that go beyond the usual research, scribing, EMT, volunteering, etc.?
For example:
Does anyone think working in health-related NPOs is worth it? Has anyone created/managed a NPO?
Has anyone found working in Peace Corps worth it? Are there any similar shorter-term organizations?

Alternatively, would it be better to focus on things I like outside of medicine?
 

GrapesofRath

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May 5, 2015
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Americorps is definitely worth looking into. I'd give consideration to becoming a nursing assistant/PCT/ER Tech as well or a hospital job very similar to that.

If you want to boost your application, service to others, going beyond what most are willing to do in terms of making sacrifice is what really stands out and makes a difference. Obviously, a position like Americorps where you are serving others for 10+ hours a day can do this but don't make the mistake that just because you get "money" it means its not service to others and doesn't show a willingness to go above and beyond most. Working in a hospital, doing what nursing assistants have to do for patients(ie wiping their asses, dealing with the terminally ill etc) , even if they are getting paid, is a great example of serving for others and going above and beyond what most pre-meds are willing to.
 
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carpediem22

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Mar 12, 2015
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Americorps is definitely worth looking into. I'd give consideration to becoming a nursing assistant/PCT/ER Tech as well or a hospital job very similar to that.

If you want to boost your application, service to others, going beyond what most are willing to do in terms of making sacrifice is what really stands out and makes a difference. Obviously, a position like Americorps where you are serving others for 10+ hours a day can do this but don't make the mistake that just because you get "money" it means its not service to others and doesn't show a willingness to go above and beyond most. Working in a hospital, doing what nursing assistants have to do for patients(ie wiping their asses, dealing with the terminally ill etc) , even if they are getting paid, is a great example of serving for others and going above and beyond what most pre-meds are willing to.
I agree, and I'll add that I think the usual research/scribe/EMT won't necessarily make you stand out even if they are fantastic experiences. There are a ton of global fellowship options if you're interested in global health at all (Global Health Corps, Fulbright, Peace Corps, etc.), and if you're competitive enough you could always apply for some of the UK scholarships. Otherwise, as Grapes said, something that demonstrates selflessness and service is always good. Americorps is a great way to do that. Also Teach for America, although I know that is a bit controversial.

If your gap year plan isn't necessarily tied to medicine, that's OK so long as you still stay involved somehow (volunteering, shadowing, etc.). I know people who took years off to work in public policy, consulting, and even mountain climbing and still got into top schools. Gap years are a great thing.
 
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mcatjelly

Meow
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Dec 21, 2013
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Adding onto the "nursing assistant/hospital tech" bandwagon, I'm a psych tech and absolutely love what I do. There's a lot of grunt work involved but I am around patients all day every day and actually play some role in their treatment. And since the hospital I work at is state-owned, most of my patients are from underserved populations and diverse cultural backgrounds which has been beneficial to my understanding of sociological effects on healthcare access/treatment.
 

moisne

5+ Year Member
Jan 7, 2014
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Live your life a bit too...
A friend of mine said they told the interviewer that he took a year off to do what he always wanted to do - travel and stuff. Because, once you are in - it's the long haul and you won't have much time or money to do those things anymore.
 

garbageman

2+ Year Member
Apr 16, 2016
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Live your life a bit too...
A friend of mine said they told the interviewer that he took a year off to do what he always wanted to do - travel and stuff. Because, once you are in - it's the long haul and you won't have much time or money to do those things anymore.
Did your friend ever get in?