drboris

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Jun 26, 2003
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I will be starting medical school this July, but since I have had a semester off I have been shadowing doctors to get some clinical experience. At this point, I am really interested in Heme/Onc. Yes, I know its early but I have been exposed to this field several times, and I think t fits well for me. One of the doctors I shadowed is heavily involved in clinical trials and clinical research, and has offered me an opportunity to do research on many occasions. Since Hem/onc is becoming more competitive, I was thinking about starting some research now. My question is do I start doing research now or should I wait until I start medical school and do reseach at the cancer clinic there, or eventually both??

Thanks in advance.
 

Kalel

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I would try to do both. I don't think that ERAS distinguish's between pre-med and med school activities (a PD has to check the dates that the activities were done), and even if they did, pre-med research counts for almost as much as med school research does (eg several interviewers asked me about my pre-med research, had to BS a little). If you find that you have been assigned a good research project (ie possibility of being published, good clinical significance), then I think that it would be worthwhile to try to continue your research project during the summer of your first year and try to get something published out of it. If you don't really like your research project, you can always try to find another one or move on to doing something else next year. Also, it'd be great if you were able to be paid for this research, but don't let that dissuade you from doing it if you aren't going to be paid. If this person asking you to do research with him is a med school professor, you may be eligible for federal work-study if he doesn't want to pay you out of his own lab funds. I'd look into it through your financial aid office.
 

punjabiMD

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Aug 4, 2002
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Kalel said:
I would try to do both. I don't think that ERAS distinguish's between pre-med and med school activities (a PD has to check the dates that the activities were done), and even if they did, pre-med research counts for almost as much as med school research does (eg several interviewers asked me about my pre-med research, had to BS a little). QUOTE]

that's great to hear. Do you think that might be because there isn't nearly as much time in med as there is in pre-med to do research? (in undergrad, I spent summers and part-time during the semesters in the lab... I can't imagine doing the same during med... I was only able to manage my M1 summer and a short time during M2, that's it).
 

Kalel

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Yup. Several interviewers told me that they liked seeing some research on my CV because the general trend has been that more and more med students are graduating without any research experience. Med school adcoms are probably partially responsible for this trend because of their recent (within the last 10 yrs) emphasis on humanistic qualities over scientific qualifications. PD's know how busy we all are in med school, so I think that they recognize that many students who like to do research do not get any opportunity to do so during med school for whatever reason. You should have time to pursue a research elective during your senior year if that's something that you are interested in. If you do it during the fall, you can even put it in ERAS.
 
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