My Predicament

Insulinshock

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Hello all!

I have a question that I would like some feedback on.. I know, generally speaking, that using high school experiences on medical school admission is not encouraged. Currently, I have close to 200 hours of clinical experience (you can check Mdapps if you want specifics), but only about 20 of those have come since I've been in college.

The other 180 or so came during my senior year in high school when I was enrolled in a class that did rotations throughout the hospital. This is the experience that solidified my desire to pursue an MD. However, since it was an experience I had in high school do you think this will hinder my application? I really don't feel the need to shadow any doctors further, and the only other thing I had considered was maybe doing hospice work for a bit.

Thoughts/ comments? Thanks guys!
 

DrYoda

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The AMCAS specifically asks for ECs from college and after, unless the activity is a continuation of one from highschool. You may want to rack up a few hours, just so you can put them down on the primary.

Your highschool class could be something worth mentioning in your personal statement though.
 

Sangria

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I agree that you should get more clinical in college, both for the primary and to demonstrate commitment. But since the high school experienced had a great influence on you wanting to become a doctor, you should use it for your personal statement
 
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GoSpursGo

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Hello all!

I have a question that I would like some feedback on.. I know, generally speaking, that using high school experiences on medical school admission is not encouraged. Currently, I have close to 200 hours of clinical experience (you can check Mdapps if you want specifics), but only about 20 of those have come since I've been in college.

The other 180 or so came during my senior year in high school when I was enrolled in a class that did rotations throughout the hospital. This is the experience that solidified my desire to pursue an MD. However, since it was an experience I had in high school do you think this will hinder my application? I really don't feel the need to shadow any doctors further, and the only other thing I had considered was maybe doing hospice work for a bit.

Thoughts/ comments? Thanks guys!

So, essentially, you have 20 hours of clinical experience.

By all means, use your experiences from HS in your personal statement, but it's not really appropriate to count those hours as an EC on your AMCAS. While you may not "feel the need to shadow any doctors further," showing that you are aware of the realities in the medical profession is only part of the purpose of clinical extracurriculars. Adcoms also use these to evaluate a sustained interest in medicine and altruism; the first will be difficult to show if you haven't had any medically relevant activities in the last three years when you apply, and the second would be difficult to show even if you could use those shadowing hours since you're not actually providing any service and merely just getting experience, especially considering the fact that you were getting a grade.

While you may well know the reality of being a doctor, that's not all that adcoms are looking for. You need more clinical experience, and it really should be more volunteer work than shadowing.
 

Lew

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I disagree. I did the same type of program and mentioned it in my application. It was a major medical experience (an opportunity to see medicine that many other applicants haven't had) and very relevant to why you are applying to medical school. My medical adviser agreed that this was a good move.

I do agree that you should also have newer clinical experiences as well.
 

beachblonde

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I did a lot of shadowing in high school as well, and I was told by the dean of admissions at one school last year that medical schools don't really "count" high school shadowing. Their explanation was because your brain is different in high school than it is in college. I think it's because they love making people jump through hoops and quack like a duck, but my opinion doesn't count here.

You can write about your high school experience in your PS and secondary essays, but leave it off AMCAS. Get some more clinical experience now to "show" a continued interest in medicine. Don't get stuck reapplying because you didn't shadow or volunteer enough in college.
 

dispatchblue

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I disagree that you should leave it out. Yes, any relevant college experience should be included over that. But if you've only got 8 things to put in your work/activites section, by all means include it at the bottom. It's gong to be chronological anyway, so it's not like they'll be seeing it first. If anything, they'll be getting to it after seeing all of your college-level accomplishments.

Granted, it may not help you at all. I can't see it hurting, though, and I'm sure if I was an adcom and saw that you'd done 180 hours of stuff before hitting college I would be at least moderately impressed.

FYI I included a mentoring program that I was involved with in high school in my work activities. I left out other stuff like football/service groups/etc but included that one because a lot of other things built off it. If its relevant/supports your application/doesn't knock off more recent college level activities, then definitely do it.
 
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