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Extracurriculars as a Nontrad

TallPreMed

Most people on here are nice. I'm not.
Oct 2, 2015
515
819
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  1. Pre-Medical
    So my plans are to attend a DO school (hopefully LECOM) in 2018 and I have my checklist for what I need to do before I start applying. Have to boost my sGPA and cGPA and take the MCAT. I played women's basketball in college and still play in my city's sports leagues competitively (it's what keeps me sane) Right now I'm overloaded with 5 nights a week with games, plan on dropping it to once a week once classes start.
    I work in hospice so my clinical hours will be around roughly 4-5,000 by the time I apply. I work 40 hours a week, starting classes 2x a week in the spring at Pitt, and I'm just not seeing where I can fit any ECs in.

    Do adcoms weigh ECs as heavily for non traditional students, since they often have a family or a full time job (or both) to report to?

    Would I be ok at this point to look into volunteering in a non health related field, say coaching? I'm concerned this would overload my schedule even when I drop playing in my leagues down to once a week. I know they want to see interests outside of medicine- well my hobbies include playing basketball, softball, volleyball and football. I really dislike not being busy, obviously.

    Just trying to get a feel for if I should look into volunteer work or not... I've noticed a lot of people volunteer in the health field to get more experience in medicine... Well I have that with my job, it being hospice just adds bonus points. Now would be the time for me to look into volunteering with basketball season being right around the corner.
     

    gmbz

    "Flight 22 is off to Honolulu"
    7+ Year Member
    Dec 20, 2012
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    1. Medical Student (Accepted)
      As a non-trad I found myself having to pick which EC's to put in my application. Think about all the extra years of EC's you have acquired. You can include something from a few years ago that had an impact on your life. I think non-trads get a break on research, not really EC's. I would presume this is something that we excel at that makes us unique, the amount of EC's!
       

      GreenDuck12

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      Mar 30, 2014
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      1. Medical Student
        ADCOMs understand that non-trad students have other commitments besides attending classes. With your work experience, you will have exposure to medicine. Make sure you do some shadowing as well (DO schools require it to be a DO physician). For volunteer work, it is important that you volunteer doing something that you are passionate about so that 1. you can talk about it in an authentic manner and 2. you continue to do it over an extended period of time. Coaching, working with disadvantaged youth, tutoring, being active in your community is great as long as you are interested in the work.
         
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        Goro

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        1. Non-Student
          5000 hr in hospice??

          I'd tell my wily old Admissions dean to accept you right now just for that!

          I think that you've already shown that you know what you're getting into and that you do want to be around sick people.

          Start shadowing, and especially shadow a DO.

          Coaching, especially for the disadvantaged, will be icing on the cake.

          How is your GPA? Have you taken MCAT??



          So my plans are to attend a DO school (hopefully LECOM) in 2018 and I have my checklist for what I need to do before I start applying. Have to boost my sGPA and cGPA and take the MCAT. I played women's basketball in college and still play in my city's sports leagues competitively (it's what keeps me sane) Right now I'm overloaded with 5 nights a week with games, plan on dropping it to once a week once classes start.
          I work in hospice so my clinical hours will be around roughly 4-5,000 by the time I apply. I work 40 hours a week, starting classes 2x a week in the spring at Pitt, and I'm just not seeing where I can fit any ECs in.

          Do adcoms weigh ECs as heavily for non traditional students, since they often have a family or a full time job (or both) to report to?

          Would I be ok at this point to look into volunteering in a non health related field, say coaching? I'm concerned this would overload my schedule even when I drop playing in my leagues down to once a week. I know they want to see interests outside of medicine- well my hobbies include playing basketball, softball, volleyball and football. I really dislike not being busy, obviously.

          Just trying to get a feel for if I should look into volunteer work or not... I've noticed a lot of people volunteer in the health field to get more experience in medicine... Well I have that with my job, it being hospice just adds bonus points. Now would be the time for me to look into volunteering with basketball season being right around the corner.
           

          TallPreMed

          Most people on here are nice. I'm not.
          Oct 2, 2015
          515
          819
          Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
          1. Pre-Medical
            5000 hr in hospice??

            I'd tell my wily old Admissions dean to accept you right now just for that!

            I think that you've already shown that you know what you're getting into and that you do want to be around sick people.

            Start shadowing, and especially shadow a DO.

            Coaching, especially for the disadvantaged, will be icing on the cake.

            How is your GPA? Have you taken MCAT??

            Thanks! I am not a care provider, but I spend every day with our patients in the facilities, I maintain and build our presence in nursing homes, assisted livings, personal care homes. I've seen a couple people cease to breathe as well and they have been very peaceful deaths, and a few have been pretty rough. I participate in activities with them, talk to them, relate any information from the facility staff to their case managers, as well as reading their charts and talking to their family members about transitioning them to hospice. I love it and it is what made me realize that I need to pursue my dream of becoming a physician. Working in hospice has been incredibly humbling as well as rewarding and I absolutely love it. The pay is awesome, but my heart lies in pursuing my MD degree.

            Ok, sorry about the soapbox, but I love talking about hospice. I can go on and on about it.

            cGPA is a 3.185 sGPA is a 2.2, only have 21 hours of science work. I've done the math and can get up to a 3.5 cGPA once I'm done with my classes if I maintain a 4.0, in accordance with AACOMAS guidelines (I am pretty sure). No MCAT as of yet because I haven't taken any science courses in a good long time.

            Our medical director is a DO and I have already started talking to him about shadowing opportunities with physicians he recommends. He's a pretty big name in the Pittsburgh area so I'm hoping that will hold some weight too as my top pick would be LECOM at SH. It's just hard trying to figure out how to add shadowing on top of trying to get volunteer hours as a coach, working full time, and going to school. Maybe I could do alternating- during the winter volunteer as a basketball coach, then shadow feb-October for 2 years. I want this so badly. I know everyone says that, but I'm more than willing to give up making 80k a year 2 years out of college working ~36 hours a week with minimal student loans if it means I can become a doctor.
             

            centron

            Full Member
            Oct 7, 2015
            41
            21
            1. Pre-Dental
              Part of being a nontrad is dealing with the extra parts of "life" that get in the way when you're not a 21 year old college student. Sacrifices need to be made, and this might mean sacrifice on more than just your end (spouse, children, friends etc).
               
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