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Medical How much of a detriment are my lackluster clinical volunteering hours?

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Goro

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    Hello, I'm a current pre-med sophomore and I'll be a junior in fall. I'm heavily invested in a volunteer org that provides medical interpretations/patient advocacy but I'll likely only have 50 clinical hours by the time I apply to medical school. Thought I do believe that these are extremely high quality hours in something that I'm really passionate about, I'm worried about how much of a detriment this will be to my application which I don't think is terrible but also not the best:

    GPA:3.98
    MCAT: will take later this summer but I'm scoring 520+'s on the AAMC p-tests
    2000+ hours over 4 Years research in Epidemiology/Public Health Policy
    • 4 Publications (average IF of 3~4)
    • Lab Coordinator (really strong relationship with PI)
    • Peer Reviewer
    500 hours in non-clinical volunteering (leadership role as an External Director: I communicate with hospitals, clinics, and NPOs to organize my organization's volunteer effort)
    100 shadowing hours
    • Internal (50)
    • Geriatrics (50)
    100 hours in a Public Policy advocacy Undergraduate Journal as an editor/writer

    I just wanted to ask advice on how I should proceed with applying to Med-school and primarily if I even have a shot if I were to apply in Junior year and not take a gap year?
    your lack of clinical hours will be lethal
     

    GoSpursGo

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      Generally, yes, >150 hours should be the benchmark. But tell me a little more about the non-clinical volunteering. If you're really making a meaningful impact and directly interfacing with the healthcare system, it's possible that is more meaningful than I am initially giving it credit for.

      But bottom line, yes, you would likely do better if you can shuffle your activities around a little and bump up those clinical hours. Or take a gap year. You should have a very strong application if you keep your stats up and perform as you currently are showing you can on the MCAT, so don't screw it up by not being patient enough to get the requisite volunteer hours.
       
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      GoSpursGo

      Allons-y!
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    • Sep 30, 2008
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      1. Attending Physician
        Thanks for the advice! I'm looking to bolster the clinical hours with hospice volunteering or scribing over the next 2 semesters at a bare minimum and hopefully longer (I was meaning to scribe much earlier but the opportunity got cancelled because of the pandemic and new spots just started to open back up in my area).

        For the non-clinical volunteering I'm responsible for communicating with the organizers/directors/administrators of hospitals, clinics, and healthcare-related NPOs to work out the logistics of the support my organization will provide. We often work with these organizations regarding health fairs, insurance signing events, kidney screenings, personal appointments, free clinics, and more recently telehealth. My role is to facilitate the flow of the events by coordinating the volunteer response as well as communicating with the respective teams to solidify a game-day plan that most effectively facilitates patient-provider interactions. I also have more administrative roles within the organization to make sure members are balancing their volunteering with the many other commitments they have.
        Try to shift your priorities around to get to 150 hours by the time you apply.
         
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