Taking a Year Off - Pediatric-related activities; Ideas anyone?

Sep 4, 2009
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Medical Student
Hi!

I've finally made the somewhat painful decision to take a year off because I don't have enough time to study for the MCAT during the school year. I'm going to study while I'm at my summer internship, and take it in September so that I can apply the following June.

I'm going into pediatrics for sure, so I would like to do something in my year off that involves working with children on a daily basis. I'd rather not do research since my application is already research-heavy, and I do need some more clinical experiences (I've only volunteered in one hospital for about a year) because I only recently decided to pursue an MD.

Does anyone have any ideas? My ideal year off would be volunteering at an orphanage in another country but I have to be in the states to do interviews and applications, and I don't have have that kind of money.

I'm also going to keep volunteering and shadowing during my year off (I love my hospital and the kids are awesome!)

Thanks!

Guppy
 

Marcus Brody

Already has the grail.
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Jun 2, 2008
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get a clinical jerb at a childrens' hospital
 

PedsDoc14

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Mar 2, 2010
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Community Health Centers are also a great place to get clinical family medicine and pediatric experience. Also being that a bachelor's degree actually gives you less applicable knowledge and experience for clinic work than say a certificate from a CC does, many will train you on the job. Americorps also has some cool assignments.
 
Jun 30, 2009
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I say you continue volunteering at a hospital but then also get a job as a tutor. It is a great way to get money and work with kids. There are A LOT of tutoring jobs advertised on craigslist (at least in my area).
 

mvenus929

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Jul 6, 2006
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Just don't tell your interviewers that you are definitely going into pediatrics. It's like going into college with a specific major... most will change their major (specialty) several times before they graduate. Be open to others, just say you're strongly considering pediatrics.

I worked in a pediatrician's office for a little over a year doing office work... not much exposure to the kids themselves, but I got a good feel for what it's like in private practice. Ask at the local children's hospital (if you have one close) what you can do volunteer wise. Work at a daycare center. Volunteer at a preschool or other school program.