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Community service?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by ilop12, Jul 30, 2011.

  1. ilop12

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    I'm a sophomore in college, starting this fall term. What is a good community service idea? How long should I do it, what specifically looks good, when should I start? Thank you!
     
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  3. torshi

    torshi Squirrel
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    if you haven't done any volunteer work start that. Hospital volunteer work, shelter work, shadowing physicians
     
  4. paul411

    paul411 ANES
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    .
     
    #3 paul411, Jul 30, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2011
  5. ElCapone

    ElCapone Don't Lawyer Me
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    1. Join a community service organization on campus.
    2. ???
    3. Profit

    Wrong thread?
     
  6. Catalystik

    Catalystik Platinum
    Physician Faculty SDN Advisor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    Ideally, you'd give your time to a cause you care about. For nonmedical community service, consider Humane Society, Habitat for Humanity, crisis hotline, soup kitchen, food pantry, homeless shelter. womenÂ’s shelter, after-school tutoring for middle school students, teaching ESL to adults, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Meals on Wheels.

    Longevity in an activity is desirable, so start soon.


     
  7. mvenus929

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    What looks good? Something that you do for enjoyment, not just to pad your resume.

    You should do it long term, but don't continue to do it if you hate it.
     
  8. isoquin

    isoquin Allopathetic
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    "What looks good?" tells me you're not the type of student I'd want to accept. Part of medicine is just jumping through hoops, and it's perfectly acceptable to ask about the characteristics of those needed hoops. However looking completely apathetic about it is not the tact you want to take. Everyone who jumps through the hoops will have some obligatory community service. The ones I recommend for acceptance are the ones who clearly enjoy what they did and came out with great experiences.
     
  9. n3xa

    n3xa "the anchor"
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    Staying active is important to me, so I gravitate towards volunteer activities that involve exercise/play/eating healthy.
     
  10. tttttc

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  11. macsta

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    I don't think it matters where you do your non-clinical volunteering...Just do something you like.

    Isoquin is right on. Good luck!
     
  12. dmf2682

    Removed Rocket Scientist 2+ Year Member

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    To hijack this thread, a nontraditional question.

    I graduated college 6 years ago and went to work in industry. I only decided to look into medicine recently. In the roughly 5.5 years since college I estimate I've done maybe 200-300 hours of various volunteering. Almost none of it is documented and it's all scattered about (ie 10h with leukemia and lymphoma society, 20h habitat, various fundraising etc). Just whatever I felt like doing. I didn't really keep track because at the time I didn't know I would need any sort of a record.

    I feel like I should mention this in addition to the clinical volunteering that I'm doing now, because it shows volunteerism that wasn't driven by a desire to get into medical school, but I have no way of proving I've done it, and no easy way of organizing it on an application.

    Any suggestions on what to do, or you all reckon I'm sol on this one?
     
  13. n3xa

    n3xa "the anchor"
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    I volunteered at the hospital ten years ago and since then they do not take volunteers in that department anymore. I briefly mentioned it in my PS and that was about it. YMMV.
     
  14. Drogo

    Drogo hakuna matata
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    For community service work, in my opinion the best place to go is to a local church. Speak with a pastor, most will be more than willing to help you find opportunities. Your university/junior college should have many ways you can help out. Keep your eyes open and stay alert, you'll find some invaluable experiences.

    You ask what looks good? We all have to jump through our hoops, but please don't be another robot when it comes to helping out people in dire need or organizations in need of compassionate volunteers. You should be asking what would I enjoy helping out with? If you like working with kids, find a mentoring program.

    If you are very outgoing like myself, help in food drives in underserved areas.

    I'd even go far as suggesting when you have some free time, start a project yourself and get other students involved. In this day and advanced technological age you have an array of ways to get the word out on projects benefitting those who need it most.

    When should you start? You could have started long ago, no one is going to hold your hands through this, you're an adult now and unless you're socially awkard you should have no problem communicating with others about community service opportunities.

    I actually think it's very easy nowadays to find stuff to do, especially with social media sites like Facebook and Twitter.

    I even found an organization that's going to help set me up abroad for a week in the country I choose in Latin America. This excites me, you should also find what excites you.

    Again, don't just go through the motions and waste your time and the time of others who truly are all about serving others.


    Trust me they will know if your bsing about volunteer experiences if it comes up in a interview. You have the memories and experiences still, just sit down one day and jot down what you can remember in a notebook.

    It's actually better that you volunteered before ever really thinking about going to med school. In my opinion this already puts you a step ahead of those who are just 'jumping through hoops' with out true compassion and eagerness and genuine service to the less fortunate.

    I actually bought myself a notebook today and I'm going to write every volunteer experience down and also any thoughts and good and fun experiences I've gotten from them. I will also do the same thing on my computer; that way I have an accurate record of everything.
     
  15. mvenus929

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    AMCAS asks that you list hours per week. Estimate your hours per week, list it under 'Miscellaneous volunteering' or just one project that you were very proud of, and then describe in the section below it what different projects you've done, what you've learned, etc.
     

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