Least painfully dull volunteering experiences?

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deleted812153

I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
 
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D

deleted244469

I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
I volunteered in the ER. Lots of patient interaction, plus the docs were always fun to be around.
 
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sjcha

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I volunteered to work with a student at my uni with a few TBIs. 3 years later and I'm still doing it. Very rewarding and life-changing, personally. Helped me get my life straightened out. If you have a Center for Learning or place where students with disabilities go to at a uni, I suggest trying there.
 

Medic741

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EMT!

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Big brother / big sister would be really great if they were in your area

Think about your 'brand' and do whatever helps that 'brand' of who you want to be as an individual, applicant and professional
 
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I volunteered in a nursing unit, then wanted to try something new and moved over to the ER at the same hospital for 2 years. Then worked at another hospital as a patient care ambassador in their ER. Whatever it is, find something you like and stick with it :) that's the best way to make meaningful connections and develop good relationships (and LORS) down the road with the docs. That applies to both clinical/non-clinical experiences. Find something that you like doing, it'll make things easier in the long run and you'll remember certain stories come interview time.
 
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68PGunner

I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
DJT's KGB Squad. It's unique and brings chill to the interview panel.
 
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IslandStyle808

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Helping the homeless find jobs. The main thing is to find something you truly enjoy, don't worry about "what adcoms would think is useful." It is crazy to see how many of my classmates were either EMTs, scribes, or had some clinical experience under their belt. It felt like too much of the same...
 
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deleted812153

Sorry for late responses, I was picturing the mammary care clinic.

I like the prison idea. I want to get away from the straight and the narrow for a bit.
 

Geo16

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Elementary school.
End of discussion.
Kids love you, you love kids. Kids are da future.
 
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I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
Attitude makes a huge difference in many scenarios! You're volunteering your time, and that's value in itself. You will be miserable in any volunteer position with the attitude of "volunteering isn't supposed to be fun".
Volunteering shows altruism, so to me personally, clinical and non-clinical are both acceptable ... as long as you learned from it, grew as a person, and helped a bit. Psych ward is a great place to volunteer at, but you need to have genuine compassion, and tons of it.
 
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cjcarter

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I was a summer camp counselor at a camp for kids with cancer. It was a lot of fun and it makes you appreciate life.
 

Goro

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I suggest hospice, nursing homes, or working with the developmentally disabled.

I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
 
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BunnyMan17

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I volunteered as a PT aide which I quite thoroughly enjoyed, spent 99% of my time with patients as opposed to restocking medical closets or answering the phone. Plus it gave me a ton of cool stories to talk about in interviews
 
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JB50

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Psych hospitals/homes.
 
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DO2015CA

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Not a high horse but when they say volunteer somewhere because it interests you not because it's checking off a box, they mean it. There are plenty of places to volunteer that are specifically interesting to you. What makes you want to go into medicine? What specialties interest you? Volunteer and and around those specialties. It gives you a way to see if you check out the specialties.

I want to do pc so I volunteered at a free clinic. I had a blast and it was 10x more educational than shadowing a FM doc in an office setting.

For non-clinical, I always recommend volunteering at wild life reserves and animal shelters. What's more fun than getting outside or playing with puppies
 

flannelfan

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I volunteer at my local cancer center and I find it to be extremely rewarding. There are times where it gets dull, like making copies and sorting through magazines in the lobbies and hanging flyers and stuff. But fitting wigs to women going through cancer treatments, passing around lunch and talking with the patients, and meeting with new ones about support groups and resources you really hear some humbling stuff. Really reminds me of why I want to be a physician. Like I said, not like pulse-pounding, but definitely worth it.
 

Geo16

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.
(posted by my mistake! Sorry! )
 
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Nikj

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I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
I have also shadowed/volunteered in an Emergency Department and Trauma center. It is always exciting, and I am always learning things. I get to watch all the procedures, and learn about diagnostics used to create a differential.

Other than the large variety of cases, all the learning opportunities, interactions with EVERY kind of physician during consults, residents, and medical students, experiencing the trauma cases are a one of a kind experience.

Although you get used to trauma cases pretty quickly, it's always a heart pounding experience, and it truly makes you appreciate that you are going into medicine.

I always tell people that ask that shadowing/volunteering there has been one of the biggest motivational resources I've had, and it's an environment in which you really get to experience medicine.

I highly recommend that anyone looking for a meaningful shadowing/volunteering experience do whatever they can to get into an emergency department, and shadow/volunteer with a physician. I'm almost convinced that I'll go into emergency medicine or trauma surgery after medical school because of my experiences.
 

Medic741

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Just thought of this -- some EMS agencies will let you volunteer as an assistant to the Paramedic.

Would highly recommend it. You'll see poverty // crime // life circumstances that you just won't be able to believe. Really makes you an empathic individual when you can hold the hand of someone who's literally melted into their mattress with feces all over the room and you can hold your composure and have a normal conversation. Just had a moment to re-read your response -- EMS volunteering doesn't require an EMT cert!

I wouldn't put all my eggs in this basket obviously, but I feel strongly (lol quite, quite biased) that seeing what the prehospital medicine world is like is an important stepping stone for those of us who are on the way to becoming doctors!

Or, Donald, you could volunteer for Anonymous ;), @Donald J. Trump

Rock on guys/gals :)
 

Geo16

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Just thought of this -- some EMS agencies will let you volunteer as an assistant to the Paramedic.
Nice! No professional skills required? Like you help them pick up patients and stuff, right?!?!
 

Medic741

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Nice! No professional skills required? Like you help them pick up patients and stuff, right?!?!
Haha doesn't that pretty much sum up most clinical volunteer experiences?

At least you get to roll up in something with lights & sirens. Which is kinda exciting... and honestly never gets old
 
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Geo16

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Haha doesn't that pretty much sum up most clinical volunteer experiences?

At least you get to roll up in something with lights & sirens. Which is kinda exciting... and honestly never gets old
I didn't mean it to sound like 'oh yeah that is nothing.'
But like CNA, you need a certificate or have to meet the requirement.
If it's open to all, I'm up for it :D
 

Medic741

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I didn't mean it to sound like 'oh yeah that is nothing.'
But like CNA, you need a certificate or have to meet the requirement.
If it's open to all, I'm up for it :D
Haha no worries! And yes, it is open to all. Give your local EMS agency a call, explain what you want to do (volunteer!) and they'll either invite you to come over for an 'interview,' or to point you in the direction of a nearby EMS agency that has a volunteer program setup for individuals without EMT certs.

I started in EMS when I was 16 as an 'assistant to the EMT.' Was a great experience, made me want to become a doctor actually ;)
 
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AlbinoHawk DO

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Volunteering will never be fulfilling to you because you're not the type of person that does it because they care. There's nothing wrong with that, but unfortunately, it means whatever you do is biting the bullet to get to your actual goal.
 

Ho0v-man

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I did the bare minimum amount of shadowing required. No ECs or volunteering. Didn't know I was supposed to until my first interview and I was very deer in the headlights when everyone went around the room introducing themselves and talking about all the stuff they'd done.
 

MareNostrummm

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I did the bare minimum amount of shadowing required. No ECs or volunteering. Didn't know I was supposed to until my first interview and I was very deer in the headlights when everyone went around the room introducing themselves and talking about all the stuff they'd done.
Nice
 
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GBCrzzyy

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I understand that volunteering isn't supposed to be fun, but most of the ones I've tried have been unbearable. That would be fine if I felt I was making a meaningful impact.

What volunteering, both clinical and nonclinical did you found the most enjoyable or least terrible? I'm looking into volunteering at the psych ward.

(Do you more-or-less have to do both clinical and nonclinical, or is either/or acceptable?)
It's not for everyone but I spent two years volunteering as a firefighter. I learned so much and had a lot of fun doing it! Very rewarding.

I also volunteered at a science museum in their wildlife department. My job was basically to play with the animals and cuddle them. Can't beat playing with a fox. It was also nice to help teach the kids about those animals. If you have any interests whatsoever, there are bound to be volunteer opportunities related to most, if not all, of them.
 
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