Is being a research assistant/lab aide considered having research experience?

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rochagurl89

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This will be my summer between freshman/sophomore year...and at this point, the only positions available are lab aides...basically just washing/making simple solutions/and running errands...does everyone start their research like this?

Or, would a better option be taking classes to become and EMT (which I plan on doing at some point anyway)?
 

ChubbyChaser

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This will be my summer between freshman/sophomore year...and at this point, the only positions available are lab aides...basically just washing/making simple solutions/and running errands...does everyone start their research like this?

Or, would a better option be taking classes to become and EMT (which I plan on doing at some point anyway)?
Clinical experience=unofficial requirement
Research=nice EC to have.
 

iA-MD2013

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It kinda depends on the lab you join. Some labs will make you their bitch, while others try to teach you and allow you to conduct your own research.
It's probably better to be an EMT...clinical experience is much more important. If you ever find a lab position where you can actually do something productive, take it. You learn a lot and it's a nice EC to have.
 
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rochagurl89

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so volunteering or becoming an EMT would be better than working at a lab if I'm not doing the research myself?

How do you get actual research opportunities if you don't have "prior experience"?
 

iA-MD2013

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so volunteering or becoming an EMT would be better than working at a lab if I'm not doing the research myself?

How do you get actual research opportunities if you don't have "prior experience"?
You have to keep searching. I got lucky and didn't have any prior experience when I joined a lab...just expressed my interest and the PI took me in.
I think you should be an EMT either way. It's more important than research.
 

ChubbyChaser

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so volunteering or becoming an EMT would be better than working at a lab if I'm not doing the research myself?

How do you get actual research opportunities if you don't have "prior experience"?
Get luck or you dont

Alot of ppl have to put in the time doing scut work.
 

kami333

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Your experience will vary by lab. My title is lab aide, yet I'm in charge of our mice colony and all the mice experiments;)

Research is like anything else in life, you start at the bottom (doing scut work), prove that you aren't a complete *****, start taking part in ongoing experiments, and hopefully design a part of one (or your own). Of course there are ways around the steps, like being lucky (my case) or having your own funding (my observations has been that if you get your own undergrad grant it's easier to get into a lab, probably because if you screw up it's not the lab's money you are wasting). Personally I think learning to deal with doing scut work has it's place, plus I know how to autoclave or prepare stuff on the weekends when no ones else is around (not that it's hard but still...)

PS, if research doesn't excite you, please don't do it. It's hard enough teaching someone but when they are just wanting to check it off their list and are unenthusiastic, it's annoying.
 
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135892

This will be my summer between freshman/sophomore year...and at this point, the only positions available are lab aides...basically just washing/making simple solutions/and running errands...does everyone start their research like this?

Or, would a better option be taking classes to become and EMT (which I plan on doing at some point anyway)?

Research is cool, you should try it out. I started out doing the scut, but putting in some effort and showing some initiative goes a long way...
 

rochagurl89

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So i had my job interview today and i got the position and just have to make up my mind now..

So basically, I just have to clean glassware and then do really basic stuff - like making some solutions...so the job itself isn't hard

I would only be doing it for the summer and it is about 6-10 hours per week...

Is this worth doing? I am also planning on taking physics I and II over the summer...would adding EMT classes be too much? or should I just volunteer at an ambulance and take the EMT classes next summer?
 

mdmarty

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So i had my job interview today and i got the position and just have to make up my mind now..

So basically, I just have to clean glassware and then do really basic stuff - like making some solutions...so the job itself isn't hard

I would only be doing it for the summer and it is about 6-10 hours per week...

Is this worth doing? I am also planning on taking physics I and II over the summer...would adding EMT classes be too much? or should I just volunteer at an ambulance and take the EMT classes next summer?

Don't try to do everything at once. I tried doing too much my first college summer, and ended up dropping half of the things.

I think doing research is really important, especially if you want to go to a 'top research school'. Duh. Whether or not you should take the job really depends on what type of lab it is, whether you are initially interested in the stuff they work on, the type of people, and most importantly the PI him/herself. After a few weeks, if you're attentive and the PI likes you, you WILL get to work on a real project, or even better, you'll get your own project. You have to start from somewhere.
 

foster033

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So i had my job interview today and i got the position and just have to make up my mind now..

So basically, I just have to clean glassware and then do really basic stuff - like making some solutions...so the job itself isn't hard

I would only be doing it for the summer and it is about 6-10 hours per week...

Is this worth doing? I am also planning on taking physics I and II over the summer...would adding EMT classes be too much? or should I just volunteer at an ambulance and take the EMT classes next summer?

Take the job. It will be easy mindless work, but you have to start somewhere. It will be much easier to get a "real" lab job later on if you have this experience.
 

TheRealMD

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Lab work has a totem pole just like medicine. You don't just jump to Department Chief straight out of med school, you have to work for it.
 
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135892

So i had my job interview today and i got the position and just have to make up my mind now..

So basically, I just have to clean glassware and then do really basic stuff - like making some solutions...so the job itself isn't hard

I would only be doing it for the summer and it is about 6-10 hours per week...

Is this worth doing? I am also planning on taking physics I and II over the summer...would adding EMT classes be too much? or should I just volunteer at an ambulance and take the EMT classes next summer?

If you can only do it for the summer, I would think hard about accepting it. It takes a while to learn everything and get comfortable, and especially since you're starting at the bottom it might take even a bit longer. If you plan on continuing it during the fall, then definitely take it
 

rochagurl89

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Thanks for all of ur advice!

So I think I will end up taking the position since it seems easy enough and I asked the Dr. whether it would be possible to eventually help out/or observe their research and she said yes provided I do it as volunteer work as opposed to paid

I will also be taking physics which will only be a 10-15min walk from the job

With any extra time, I will probably just try to either volunteer at a local ambulance or shadow a doctor...or prob just chill out:cool:

does this sound like a prty decent plan?
 

emttim

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Thanks for all of ur advice!

So I think I will end up taking the position since it seems easy enough and I asked the Dr. whether it would be possible to eventually help out/or observe their research and she said yes provided I do it as volunteer work as opposed to paid

I will also be taking physics which will only be a 10-15min walk from the job

With any extra time, I will probably just try to either volunteer at a local ambulance or shadow a doctor...or prob just chill out:cool:

does this sound like a prty decent plan?

I'd hold off on the ambulance thing for now. I don't know of any service, outside some firefighter units, that will take a volunteer under their wing and provide training for them. You almost always need to be an EMT before you can get on with an ambulance company...if its strictly volunteer, I'm not sure, but there's plenty of other opportunities to volunteer in so why not do EMT as a paid job and use it to keep yourself fed?

Definitely think about whether you want to do EMT just for clinical experience and to bolster your application or if you have a genuine interest in EMS and/or working on an ambulance...there's too much BS in this job to do it with the checkbox approach. Especially when you could just as easily get clinical experience volunteering or shadowing even if it won't necessarily be as good.
 

rochagurl89

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I actually went to my local ambulance and they seemed more than happy to let me join. They said that they would provide training but without my EMT i can only be a dispatcher or observer in the ambulance...

I rly do want to get my EMT, not just to "check off." I was originally thinking of taking EMT classes + physics but since I am joining the job I think I will hold off on the EMT so that I don't overwhelm myself...Isn't getting an EMT certification very time consuming/intense?

Is it not worth just volunteering at the ambulance as a dispatcher...should I spend taht time volunteering at a hospital?
 

ChubbyChaser

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I actually went to my local ambulance and they seemed more than happy to let me join. They said that they would provide training but without my EMT i can only be a dispatcher or observer in the ambulance...

I rly do want to get my EMT, not just to "check off." I was originally thinking of taking EMT classes + physics but since I am joining the job I think I will hold off on the EMT so that I don't overwhelm myself...Isn't getting an EMT certification very time consuming/intense?

Is it not worth just volunteering at the ambulance as a dispatcher...should I spend taht time volunteering at a hospital?
Id say you should volunteer as a dispatcher if you enjoy it, I guess it does expose you to the medical field somewhat.


*Getting the EMT certification was probably the easiest class i took since elementary school. If you are doing well in your college courses, you should ace the EMT course and the National boards.
 

rochagurl89

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oh...but i was advised to not take more than the physics and EMT course together...b/c of time...
 
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