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How to get research assistant position at hospital for gap year?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by lumpyduster, Sep 20, 2014.

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  1. lumpyduster

    lumpyduster 2+ Year Member

    224
    101
    Feb 25, 2013
    Hi,

    I'm graduating in May and I'm starting to look into places I want to apply. There are so many opportunities out there that I haven't totally narrowed down what kind of activity/job I want (Americorps volunteer, ESL teacher abroad, research, organic farming lol... ) but I have heard of people working as research assistants at a hospital. If anyone has done this, how did you find your position? Email doctors/researchers? I have a lot of research experience (albeit in a chemistry lab) and I'd ideally want my own project.

    Any input would be great, thanks!
     
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  3. Logorrhea

    Logorrhea 2+ Year Member

    27
    2
    Jun 21, 2013
    Hi,

    I just graduated this past May, and I am currently working as a research assistant at a hospital. There's a ton of research assistant jobs being advertised every day (try searching on indeed.com as well as the websites of hospitals, medical schools, and research centers), but there's also typically A LOT of applicants for these positions. Apply to several different positions, because you will probably never even hear back from most. But make sure you are applying to positions where the research topics actually interest you. I also suggest spending a lot of time tailoring your cover letter to each different position you apply for and then following up a couple days after you submit your application if you have a phone number or email address to contact. Feel free to PM me if you have more questions!

    Good luck!
     
  4. zzxxzz

    zzxxzz 2+ Year Member

    639
    328
    Jan 13, 2012
    Email a bunch of professors/researchers and ask if you can VOLUNTEER in their lab. You'll get more full-time offers than you can handle.

    If you try for a paid position, prepare to be beaten out by infinitely more qualified applicants. I volunteered in a lab and turned it into a paid position; my main qualification was my experience in that lab.
     
    BePerfect likes this.
  5. lumpyduster

    lumpyduster 2+ Year Member

    224
    101
    Feb 25, 2013
    Thank you both for your replies! When did you guys start looking for positions? I think it would be strange for me to start actually applying now for these jobs since I won't be able to start working until after graduation.

    I wouldn't mind volunteering, but I'd have to do it in my home city and live at home and both of those prospects seem unideal. For me this is really for the learning experience but I have to support myself somehow, even if it comes to eating Ramen noodles day in and day out ;)
     
  6. zzxxzz

    zzxxzz 2+ Year Member

    639
    328
    Jan 13, 2012
    Again, just be aware that you'll be competing with people with tons of experience and generally advanced degrees. If you want a paying job that'll help your ECs, look into clinical jobs (scribe, CNA) as well.
     
    lumpyduster likes this.
  7. DielsAlder

    DielsAlder

    208
    98
    Jan 3, 2014
    This is so true and exactly what I did. I assume the OP is taking just one gap year. PI's for those positions generally prefer 2-3 year commitments. Good luck on the job hunt!
     
    lumpyduster likes this.

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