Apr 5, 2020
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Hello all! I plan to apply this coming cycle and have run into a bit of a conundrum. Prior to the current pandemic, I had completed 30 hours of clinical volunteering before all volunteers were pulled and the program was placed on hold. I've been hopeful that I would be able to get at least another 30 hours of clinical volunteering before applying, but I'm not even certain if that is possible. However, I will be applying with a total of ~1850 hours scribing between the ED and a GI outpatient clinic. I was thinking these hours along with increasing my non-clinical hours from what I planned to apply with (~120 hours) to (~200 hours) would make up for my low clinical volunteering hours. With this plan, would 30 hours of clinical volunteering still raise red flags?

Also, I was hoping for some ideas on non-clinical volunteering I could do given currently being in a pandemic. I'm already volunteering with meals on wheels, which I love!
 
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Moko

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Hello all! I plan to apply this coming cycle and have run into a bit of a conundrum. Prior to the current pandemic, I had completed 30 hours of clinical volunteering before all volunteers were pulled and the program was placed on hold. I've been hopeful that I would be able to get at least another 30 hours of clinical volunteering before applying, but I'm not even certain if that is possible. However, I will be applying with a total of ~1850 hours scribing between the ED and a GI outpatient clinic. I was hoping these hours along with increasing my non-clinical hours from what I planned to apply with (~120 hours) to (~200 hours). Would 30 hours of clinical volunteering still raise red flags?

Also, I was hoping for some ideas on non-clinical volunteering I could do given currently being in a pandemic. I'm already volunteering with meals on wheels, which I love!
You don't need clinical volunteering. You need clinical experience, which you possess plenty of through your scribing. You have scribed in different settings, which help broaden the scope of your experiences. Adcoms also look for evidence of altruism, which can be demonstrated through clinical and/or non-clinical volunteering (though personally, I prefer seeing more of the latter). Your plan to continue volunteering is a sound one. Obviously, the more the better, but 200 hours is a good starting point, and, together with your 30 hours of clinical volunteering, should not raise any red flags. Meals on Wheels is a great organization to volunteer with. If your living situation allows for this, consider also volunteering with other programs that might give you more face-to-face time with those you are serving: homeless shelters, food pantries, soup kitchens, etc. Just my thoughts.
 
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Apr 5, 2020
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You don't need clinical volunteering. You need clinical experience, which you possess plenty of through your scribing. You have scribed in different settings, which help broaden the scope of your experiences. Adcoms also look for evidence of altruism, which can be demonstrated through clinical and/or non-clinical volunteering (though personally, I prefer seeing more of the latter). Your plan to continue volunteering is a sound one. Obviously, the more the better, but 200 hours is a good starting point, and, together with your 30 hours of clinical volunteering, should not raise any red flags. Meals on Wheels is a great organization to volunteer with. If your living situation allows for this, consider also volunteering with other programs that might give you more face-to-face time with those you are serving: homeless shelters, food pantries, soup kitchens, etc. Just my thoughts.
Just to make sure, it would be ok if I only applied with 30 hours of clinical volunteering? I've been so worried that it won't be enough, but I honestly find myself much more passionate about non-clinical volunteer opportunities than the clinical volunteering work I've done. I find myself making a much bigger impact through the non-clinical volunteering I do and feel I would have little to no talking points about the clinical volunteering I've done.
 
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Just to make sure, it would be ok if I only applied with 30 hours of clinical volunteering? I've been so worried that it won't be enough, but I honestly find myself much more passionate about non-clinical volunteer opportunities than the clinical volunteering work I've done. I find myself making a much bigger impact through the non-clinical volunteering I do and feel I would have little to no talking points about the clinical volunteering I've done.

Clinical experience = paid clinical and/or clinical volunteering. You do not need both. You just see a lot of people with a lot of clinical volunteering because it's much more readily accessible than paid clinical jobs in a lot of areas.

Go all out on non-clinical, because your clinical experience is more than enough.
 
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Clinical experience = paid clinical and/or clinical volunteering. You do not need both. You just see a lot of people with a lot of clinical volunteering because it's much more readily accessible than paid clinical jobs in a lot of areas.

Go all out on non-clinical, because your clinical experience is more than enough.
Bit of a late reply, but does this mean that if I continue volunteering in the local hospital, a different position such as being a scribe/patient transporter is unnecessary? One would think that admissions officers would look highly upon someone who took an extensive course to get an actual job. Right now I'm a sophomore with 125 or so hospital volunteer hours, but I'm not sure if I should pursue clinical work.
 
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Bit of a late reply, but does this mean that if I continue volunteering in the local hospital, a different position such as being a scribe/patient transporter is unnecessary? One would think that admissions officers would look highly upon someone who took an extensive course to get an actual job. Right now I'm a sophomore with 125 or so hospital volunteer hours, but I'm not sure if I should pursue clinical work.
I mean, why not both? However, assuming money is not a factor, I would probably make the decision on what will be a more meaningful experience. For example, if the volunteering position would be accepting forms in the waiting room, while the paid position would be moving around floor and interacting with patients during procedures/performing minor procedures, I would personally find the experience in the paid position more valuable. Alternatively, if the volunteering position involved moving around the floor and helping patients out (allowing you to view procedures and interact with patients in meaningful ways), while the paid position was for you to push a stretcher between hospital wings, would probably go with the volunteering.

As far as certs go, which I assume is what you mean by taking an extensive course, I'm a big fan because they open a bunch of doors in both work and volunteering. However, from what I understand, the cert in and of itself doesn't mean too much. You're more getting it for what you're actually going to do with it.
 

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