Hey everyone, I'm going to be taking a year off after I get my bachelors to get some more extracurriculars under my belt. I have some options choosing from and was hoping I could get some opinions on how medical schools rank or rate one's extracurriculars. Let me first establish that I have no research experience. I understand that this is relatively unusual for a pre-med student. My initial plan was to do some research in this year off either at the NIH or at UNC-Chapel Hill. However, a new opportunity has knocked and I have a chance to work in New Orleans for Katrina relief. It's somewhat health related at best (more construction, emotional support to victims, etc). I don't like research. I find it monotonous and boring (I don't want to debate over it's benefits to me as a future MD, I just wanted it to be understood that I don't like it). All things being equal, I would be in New Orleans in a flash. However, I don't want to take this trip at the expense of my chances for med school. That's my ultimate goal. Many advisors in this case would say "well, you have to do what you want". I understand that. My question is less related to what I want and more related to what medical schools want. Am I hurting my chances of getting into medical school by not having research experience, or will it be relatively unaffected? Sorry for the length of the post, but I wanted everyone to understand my situation as fully as possible. Thanks so much for your opinions and also your patience. Best of luck in the future.