Shadowing or clinical volunteering outside of business hours?

Jan 19, 2019
8
2
Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone has any tips on finding volunteering and shadowing opportunities during evenings and weekends when I wouldn't be at work? Also, if there are any opportunities that you felt gave you a really good taste for what being a doctor would actually be like? (I'm in the L.A. area if anyone has any suggestions specific to here.) Thanks!
 

DadIsFat

2+ Year Member
Feb 23, 2018
19
5
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone has any tips on finding volunteering and shadowing opportunities during evenings and weekends when I wouldn't be at work? Also, if there are any opportunities that you felt gave you a really good taste for what being a doctor would actually be like? (I'm in the L.A. area if anyone has any suggestions specific to here.) Thanks!

Hi! I volunteered at a free clinic that is one evening a month. My church and a few of the other area churches put it on and it was a great opportunity. I also met a few of the doctors that volunteered there and was able to set up shadowing opportunities with 2 of them. The hospital I volunteered at was also flexible as I volunteered in the emergency department. Since it is always open, I could volunteer anytime. I would consider trying to find some free clinics in your area if possible. I loved my experience and as a bonus I ended up making some contacts too. Good luck!
 

GreenDuck12

5+ Year Member
Mar 30, 2014
675
402
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone has any tips on finding volunteering and shadowing opportunities during evenings and weekends when I wouldn't be at work? Also, if there are any opportunities that you felt gave you a really good taste for what being a doctor would actually be like? (I'm in the L.A. area if anyone has any suggestions specific to here.) Thanks!
Large hospitals usually have availability for volunteers all year round and during evenings but usually provide limited exposure. Medium and small hospitals may let you do and see more (my experience). My advice would be to start contacting hospitals and free clinics in your area to see if they allow volunteers.
 
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Aug 16, 2019
1
0
Not in LA, but I had this same problem - since shadowing doesn’t need to be long term, one option for that is just taking a day/afternoon off work (I did this in order to shadow in primary care). Otherwise, I shadowed in the ED on weekends.

Hospitals usually have volunteer opportunities 24/7, and you might also look at hospices. I haven’t been able to find opportunities to volunteer at a free/community clinic, all the ones around here have yearlong waiting lists for volunteers and operate business hours. But it might be possible in your area! Just as a note, volunteering anywhere is often what you make of it, I’ve been a volunteer in a large hospital but felt like I got to “do” plenty (for a volunteer), just by being friendly, consistent, enthusiastic, and making an effort to get to know the staff. But again, YMMV.

As far as best experiences showing you what being a doctor is like, I’d have to say shadowing, since you literally get to see what it’s like. IMO volunteering is not very useful for this, it serves a different function entirely. (The obvious disclaimer here being, I am only a clueless premed still).
 

CyrilFiggis

5+ Year Member
Nov 4, 2014
1,956
3,170
Status
Medical Student
Former LA based post-back/career changer. USC has an ED volunteer program. I worked 8p-12a or 12a-4a every week. UCLA has the care extender program that is a bit more competitive but offers similar non-business hours.
 
Nov 19, 2019
15
6
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone has any tips on finding volunteering and shadowing opportunities during evenings and weekends when I wouldn't be at work? Also, if there are any opportunities that you felt gave you a really good taste for what being a doctor would actually be like? (I'm in the L.A. area if anyone has any suggestions specific to here.) Thanks!
If you want help finding and getting shadowing opportunities I find this page really helpful :) How to Ask to Shadow a Doctor
 
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