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How can I get a shadowing position?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by morriske, May 4, 2006.

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  1. morriske

    morriske This is my fur child 2+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2006
    I'm a non-trad so the whole pre-med thing is somewhat new to me. How can I get a shadowing position? Thanks!
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  3. LifetimeDoc

    LifetimeDoc EM Resident 10+ Year Member

    Apr 30, 2006
    Well, there are several ways.

    1. Check with your school's pre-med advising office or with your local AMSA, PPMS, or other medically-related student clubs about shadowing lists that they might have of physicians that are interested in helping out students at your local university.

    2. Find out if friends or family know any physicians. See if they can contact them and find out if they are interested in allowing you to shadow, or if they have colleagues that do.

    3. Call some private physicians in your area! Hit some up and see what they say.

    Generally, it's not always easy to contact hospitals and find out this type of information as most doctors are independent and don't actually work for the hospitals.
  4. gujuDoc

    gujuDoc 10+ Year Member

    Feb 21, 2004
    Are you anywhere near one of the Mich med schools??? Emailing staff members with a polite request at the medical school's might works. That works at USF anyways.
  5. SuperHiro

    SuperHiro Attending 10+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2006
    Definately contact physicians in your area. Do not get discouraged if you get alot of rejections however. My friend had to send out 50+ emails to even get 6 responses and ultimately having one 1 of the responses even being an option (which turned out to be a GREAT opportunity). You might want to describe your situation as they might be more sympathetic to you?
  6. morriske

    morriske This is my fur child 2+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2006
    I'm work at UMich Med school (research) so I can just e-mail doctors? Do most docs have evening hours?
  7. gujuDoc

    gujuDoc 10+ Year Member

    Feb 21, 2004

    Ok, somehow I was thinking if you are in Ann Arbor that would be perfect. yes, my advice to you is that if UMich staff is friendly as USF's clinical faculty is, then I'm sure they wouldn't have an issue with it. So what I'd do is email faculty of the departments you are interested in and see if they'd allow for taking a premed student who is applying soon, and seeing if they'd allow you to shadow them.

    This is what I did at USF:

    I wrote and email that went something like this........

    "Dear X,

    My name is y and I am a premed student who runs the shadowing program for my local premed society. I was curious if it would be possible to shadow you or anyone in your department, or if such a think is even possible. If this is possible could you please email me back at your earliest possible convenience. Thank you for taking the time to read my request and I look forward to hearing back from you in the near future.


    Something to that effect is what I wrote to get shadowing positions. You don't even need to say you are doing it for a program, just say you are trying to look for shadowing and be extremely polite like that and you'll probably hit some luck if they are nice there.

    I find that academic faculty is more open to letting students shadow because they are constantly dealing with students. The patients at academic centers are also a bit more open to the idea of people observing since they deal with resident physicians and medical students a lot too.
  8. morriske

    morriske This is my fur child 2+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2006
  9. gujuDoc

    gujuDoc 10+ Year Member

    Feb 21, 2004
    Let me know how it goes. I'd be curious to see if they agree to it.
  10. novawildcat

    novawildcat Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Aug 22, 2005
    Volunteer at a hospital. When you see a doc where you work at, go right up to their face and ask them if you can shadow them or not. That is exactly what I did, and now I shadow the ER docs all the time. Most of the time they don't care if you follow them around or not. Some docs are douche bags about it, but most are actually very cool about it.
  11. confused-one

    confused-one Member 2+ Year Member

    Apr 13, 2006
    Do you list your shadowing experiences on your AMCAS?

    I know everyone seems to make a big deal of having this experience, but it doesn't really fit into any of the categories for the work/activity section.

    Would you just mention it in your PS?
  12. Captain Fantastic

    Captain Fantastic 10+ Year Member

    Mar 28, 2005
    Mizzou Med
    I'm a non-trad and I work part-time research at the med school here. I asked the PI I'm working under (MD) if he knew any colleagues whom I might shadow -- someone who'd be a good mentor and might be willing to accept a pre-med. He volunteered to let me shadow him in his clinic when he's not precepting med students. He also gave me a short list of other docs to contact.

    It was really pretty easy. Of course, then I had to do a bunch of paperwork for the dept. before they'd clear me -- but that's a different story.
  13. hoomsy

    hoomsy Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 24, 2004

    If you don't mind the low pay (~5$/hr) I could use someone when I'm reading in the backyard on the sunny weekends... How flexable are you? The sun sometimes does some tricky things...



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