Sep 16, 2015
5
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi all,

I am a 4th year UG applying next cycle and trying to decide if I should stay in my hospital volunteering program. Over 2 years, I have volunteered ~325 hours in different departments (ED, neurology, ICU, and others) and also served as a coordinator in the program (interviewing applicants, training and checking on volunteers, etc.). I want to stay involved, but I recently moved so that this hospital is over an hour away from my place of residence. The program has strict policies about coming every week, so with the additional driving, it will be pretty time consuming. I am thinking about joining a non-clinical volunteering program near me that I am interested in (though I already have plenty of non-clinical volunteering/leadership), but I am concerned about "longevity" and not having clinical volunteering during the application cycle. From an admissions perspective, would dropping this program reflect negatively upon me?
 

LizzyM

the evil queen of numbers
10+ Year Member
Mar 7, 2005
23,148
32,695
Status
Academic Administration
It will be pretty clear based on your address that you no longer live near this hospital. If you feel you need to explain, you can add something about leaving the "job" after you moved away.
Picking up something different is better than dropping something and not picking up something else.
 
Feb 22, 2015
35
16
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
I agree with LizzyM. Commuting that distance to volunteer seems a bit excessive. Could you find another hospital that's closer to your current place of residence? When you're filling out AMCAS you can lump the two activities together anyway and just talk about how you had to change where you were volunteering because of your move.

Also, it never hurts to volunteer where YOU want. Maybe you can manage to do both?
 
OP
M
Sep 16, 2015
5
0
Status
Pre-Medical
It will be pretty clear based on your address that you no longer live near this hospital. If you feel you need to explain, you can add something about leaving the "job" after you moved away.
Picking up something different is better than dropping something and not picking up something else.
Yeah, that makes sense. I guess I'm just concerned specifically about the fact that I may not be doing anything clinical until I graduate in June, when I plan to work as a scribe. Would that be an issue to adcoms?

I agree with LizzyM. Commuting that distance to volunteer seems a bit excessive. Could you find another hospital that's closer to your current place of residence? When you're filling out AMCAS you can lump the two activities together anyway and just talk about how you had to change where you were volunteering because of your move.

Also, it never hurts to volunteer where YOU want. Maybe you can manage to do both?
I am definitely considering local hospitals. The thing is that in my current position I am basically a CNA/EMT with lots of autonomy and hands-on pt interaction, while local hospitals are like the volunteering I did in high school (passing out water, admin work, no direct pt care). I know I am supposed to volunteer to benefit pts and not myself, but I feel like I would be doing it just to pad my resume. Plus, I already have some great experiences to talk/write about and a solid LOR from my current place. On the other hand, the non-clinical opportunity is completely different from my previous involvements and seems like something I could really get into.

And I would prefer to do both, but given that I am also increasing my hours in research and tutoring, I don't think it's realistic. The volunteering + coordinating can take up a lot of time depending on what needs to be done, so I can see myself getting overwhelmed.
 

LizzyM

the evil queen of numbers
10+ Year Member
Mar 7, 2005
23,148
32,695
Status
Academic Administration
Are you saying that you are employed as a CNA/EMT? Then you've got the clinical thing covered and no one will you accuse you of doing something clinical and then stopping after you'd done enough to "check the box". Doing non-clinical volunteering if you have the time is nice because it shows your commitment to community service.
 
OP
M
Sep 16, 2015
5
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Are you saying that you are employed as a CNA/EMT? Then you've got the clinical thing covered and no one will you accuse you of doing something clinical and then stopping after you'd done enough to "check the box". Doing non-clinical volunteering if you have the time is nice because it shows your commitment to community service.
No, it is a volunteering position. I was just saying that the duties I perform are very close to those of a CNA/EMT (depending on the department), which is much more involved than the local positions available to me.
 

Catalystik

The Gimlet Eye
10+ Year Member
Sep 4, 2006
32,804
12,551
The Other Side of the Portal
I am a 4th year UG applying next cycle and trying to decide if I should stay in my hospital volunteering program. Over 2 years, I have volunteered ~325 hours in different departments (ED, neurology, ICU, and others) and also served as a coordinator in the program (interviewing applicants, training and checking on volunteers, etc.). I want to stay involved, but I recently moved so that this hospital is over an hour away from my place of residence. The program has strict policies about coming every week, so with the additional driving, it will be pretty time consuming. I am thinking about joining a non-clinical volunteering program near me that I am interested in (though I already have plenty of non-clinical volunteering/leadership), but I am concerned about "longevity" and not having clinical volunteering during the application cycle. From an admissions perspective, would dropping this program reflect negatively upon me?
You have good longevity with this program as you are, and could possibly cover the deficit in clinical activity over the next year with some occasional shadowing closer to home. But another alternative might be to talk to the program's director about your move and see if you have enough credit in their eyes to get permission to volunteer once monthly for a longer period, despite the "strict policy" on attendance. Once one has taken on a leadership role and acquired a broad base of experience, the rules that apply to often-unreliable student noobs may no longer apply to one with your status.