No non-clinical volunteering on my app, will it hurt me?

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barbieandbrainsmd

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Below are some of my experiences that are going on my app, but I realized I don't have any non-clinical volunteering. Could that hurt my app?

Clinical Paid:
800 hours as a pediatric medical assistant

Clinical Volunteering:
160 hours as a shift leader and volunteer with a group providing clinical screenings and van clinics to the unhoused
100 hours as a volunteer MA at van clinics in schools in historically underserved areas in the city (still continuing)
100 hours as a clinical volunteer at a community health center distributing COVID vaccines and tests (early 2021)

Research:
1400 hours (and continuing) as the co-founder and lead of a research program focussed on conducting a community health needs assessment of a underserved population in the city, and creating a community health worker program with community organizations to take actionable steps from the needs assessment results

Non-Clinical:
1500 hours (paid, full-time gap year position) as a Community Outreach Coordinator at a lab focussed on the impact of built environment on health and wellness
480 hours on the board for the Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students (MAPS)
480 hours as a student advisor for an academic linkage program connecting low-income middle schoolers to academically challenging day and boarding schools (paid)
420 hours as a project associate for an org providing grief counseling for children (paid)

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Below are some of my experiences that are going on my app, but I realized I don't have any non-clinical volunteering. Could that hurt my app?

Clinical Paid:
800 hours as a pediatric medical assistant

Clinical Volunteering:
160 hours as a shift leader and volunteer with a group providing clinical screenings and van clinics to the unhoused
100 hours as a volunteer MA at van clinics in schools in historically underserved areas in the city (still continuing)
100 hours as a clinical volunteer at a community health center distributing COVID vaccines and tests (early 2021)

Research:
1400 hours (and continuing) as the co-founder and lead of a research program focussed on conducting a community health needs assessment of a underserved population in the city, and creating a community health worker program with community organizations to take actionable steps from the needs assessment results

Non-Clinical:
1500 hours (paid, full-time gap year position) as a Community Outreach Coordinator at a lab focussed on the impact of built environment on health and wellness
480 hours on the board for the Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students (MAPS)
480 hours as a student advisor for an academic linkage program connecting low-income middle schoolers to academically challenging day and boarding schools (paid)
420 hours as a project associate for an org providing grief counseling for children (paid)
It def might hurt, most schools are looking for 150+ hours in that department.

That being said, I do see some elements of service orientation in your community health worker program. Can you maybe provide some more details? Even if you were paid for it you still MIGHT be okay...no need to take a vow of poverty specifically to volunteer.
 
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Below are some of my experiences that are going on my app, but I realized I don't have any non-clinical volunteering. Could that hurt my app?

Clinical Paid:
800 hours as a pediatric medical assistant

Clinical Volunteering:
160 hours as a shift leader and volunteer with a group providing clinical screenings and van clinics to the unhoused
100 hours as a volunteer MA at van clinics in schools in historically underserved areas in the city (still continuing
)
100 hours as a clinical volunteer at a community health center distributing COVID vaccines and tests (early 2021)

Research:
1400 hours (and continuing) as the co-founder and lead of a research program focussed on conducting a community health needs assessment of a underserved population in the city, and creating a community health worker program with community organizations to take actionable steps from the needs assessment results

Non-Clinical:
1500 hours (paid, full-time gap year position) as a Community Outreach Coordinator at a lab focussed on the impact of built environment on health and wellness
480 hours on the board for the Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students (MAPS)
480 hours as a student advisor for an academic linkage program connecting low-income middle schoolers to academically challenging day and boarding schools (paid)
420 hours as a project associate for an org providing grief counseling for children (paid)

Think about moving the highlighted activities to nonclinical volunteering. Although it sounds clinical it focuses on areas that are unserved/underserved. Just a thought.

You do need nonclinical volunteering. Without it you might be screened out.
 
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It def might hurt, most schools are looking for 150+ hours in that department.

That being said, I do see some elements of service orientation in your community health worker program. Can you maybe provide some more details? Even if you were paid for it you still MIGHT be okay...no need to take a vow of poverty specifically to volunteer.
Hi! Thank you for your response! I actually have lots of service orientation in my activities! Some are clinical like services to the unhoused (aka homeless but I don't like that term) and working with marginalized and underserved communities as a volunteer MA, some are non-clinical and paid like my Community Outreach Coordinator position. As you mentioned, my big one is creating a research program with other students that then lead to the creation of a CHW program adapted for an underserved immigrant population in my city. I have this noted as research due to not have any research in my application outside of this, but I was hoping that by looking through my app there would be a clear narrative of service and equity. Does that make sense?
 
Hi! Thank you for your response! I actually have lots of service orientation in my activities! Some are clinical like services to the unhoused (aka homeless but I don't like that term) and working with marginalized and underserved communities as a volunteer MA, some are non-clinical and paid like my Community Outreach Coordinator position. As you mentioned, my big one is creating a research program with other students that then lead to the creation of a CHW program adapted for an underserved immigrant population in my city. I have this noted as research due to not have any research in my application outside of this, but I was hoping that by looking through my app there would be a clear narrative of service and equity. Does that make sense?
I mean from an overhead view I'd do as candbgirl suggested and move those highlighted activities to non-clinical just to meet any screener criteria; from there I think an adcom would see your service mission
 
OP: you are on the exec board of your MAPS chapter. I'm certain most of you have been told you need community service.

So yes, as AJ mentioned, a lot of your activities may be mischaracterized. What are your specific responsibilities for... ?

Clinical Volunteering:
160 hours as a shift leader and volunteer with a group providing clinical screenings and van clinics to the unhoused
100 hours as a volunteer MA at van clinics in schools in historically underserved areas in the city (still continuing)
100 hours as a clinical volunteer at a community health center distributing COVID vaccines and tests (early 2021)

Non-Clinical:
1500 hours (paid, full-time gap year position) as a Community Outreach Coordinator at a lab focusing on the impact of built environment on health and wellness
 
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I agree that you need some nonclinical volunteering (and I don't think I agree with the others that some of your existing activities can be re-classified - I think many app reviewers would read those descriptions and immediately see that it is clinical or at least very close to it.). I think many schools would screen you out, especially schools with a service/social justice emphasis that you are otherwise likely to be a good fit for based on your application. I would look at nonclinical volunteering as an opportunity to see what the underserved patients you already work with experience away from the clinical environment. What is it like at the shelters and service agencies where the homeless patients you serve try to access food, housing, and other services? What is it like at a domestic violence shelter where some of the kids you see at your school-based van clinics may stay? What we see providing health services, even when we are meeting patients where they are, is just a fraction of their life experiences and of the factors that affect our ability to provide care for them. I'm sure you know this already, but getting even just a couple hundred hours of non clinical volunteering will show medical schools that you know it (and you may learn something new along the way).
 
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OP: you are on the exec board of your MAPS chapter. I'm certain most of you have been told you need community service.

So yes, as AJ mentioned, a lot of your activities may be mischaracterized. What are your specific responsibilities for... ?

Clinical Volunteering:
160 hours as a shift leader and volunteer with a group providing clinical screenings and van clinics to the unhoused
100 hours as a volunteer MA at van clinics in schools in historically underserved areas in the city (still continuing)
100 hours as a clinical volunteer at a community health center distributing COVID vaccines and tests (early 2021)

Non-Clinical:
1500 hours (paid, full-time gap year position) as a Community Outreach Coordinator at a lab focusing on the impact of built environment on health and wellness
I actually may recategorize the COVID one! My description currently is that "I worked closely with doctors and medical support staff to smoothly distribute COVID vaccines and testing equipment, and monitor patients. I assisted with registering, consenting, and observing patients, along with engaging in conversations surrounding vaccine hesitancy and healthcare literacy." Since this was more of a patient registration and counseling position and I have other experience as an MA and more clinical roles, do you think this one could count as non-clinical?
 
OP: you are on the exec board of your MAPS chapter. I'm certain most of you have been told you need community service.

So yes, as AJ mentioned, a lot of your activities may be mischaracterized. What are your specific responsibilities for... ?

Clinical Volunteering:
160 hours as a shift leader and volunteer with a group providing clinical screenings and van clinics to the unhoused
100 hours as a volunteer MA at van clinics in schools in historically underserved areas in the city (still continuing)
100 hours as a clinical volunteer at a community health center distributing COVID vaccines and tests (early 2021)

Non-Clinical:
1500 hours (paid, full-time gap year position) as a Community Outreach Coordinator at a lab focusing on the impact of built environment on health and wellness
I actually may recategorize the COVID one! My description currently is that "I worked closely with doctors and medical support staff to smoothly distribute COVID vaccines and testing equipment, and monitor patients. I assisted with registering, consenting, and observing patients, along with engaging in conversations surrounding vaccine hesitancy and healthcare literacy." Since this was more of a patient registration and counseling position and I have other experience as an MA and more clinical roles, do you think this one could count as non-clinical?
 
The pandemic blurred the lines on "clinical" vs. "non-clinical" experience so on the adcom side, there is still discretion. Vaccine distribution was done as a public service; you didn't get a vaccine as patients per se, especially with public vaccination attempts, including with pharmacists. Basically you were doing a lot that pharmacists do all the time when it comes to vaccinating people; it doesn't necessarily need to be in a hospital.

But yes, you could do the same thing as a medical assistant, but if you have full access to their EMR, it's easier for me to argue "clinical" experience.
 
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The pandemic blurred the lines on "clinical" vs. "non-clinical" experience so on the adcom side, there is still discretion. Vaccine distribution was done as a public service; you didn't get a vaccine as patients per se, especially with public vaccination attempts, including with pharmacists. Basically you were doing a lot that pharmacists do all the time when it comes to vaccinating people; it doesn't necessarily need to be in a hospital.

But yes, you could do the same thing as a medical assistant, but if you have full access to their EMR, it's easier for me to argue "clinical" experience.
I actually did not give vaccines in this position! I assisted with registering, consenting, and observing patients, along with engaging in conversations surrounding vaccine hesitancy and healthcare literacy. That is why I was gearing towards non-clinical, and I did not have access to their EMR/use it often!
 
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I actually did not give vaccines in this position! I assisted with registering, consenting, and observing patients, along with engaging in conversations surrounding vaccine hesitancy and healthcare literacy. That is why I was gearing towards non-clinical, and I did not have access to their EMR/use it often!
That's nonclinical. I'd say you have what we Adcoms are indeed looking for.
 
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