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Volunteering

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Mnemosyne, May 24, 2000.

  1. Mnemosyne

    Mnemosyne Junior Member

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    How do I get a job at a hospital. I don't mind working odd hours. I just don't know how to approach a large hospital to say can I volunteer for you.

     
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  3. blanemccalister

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    Hi,

    If you would prefer to work for pay, check the hospital's human resource department. If it's not called "human resources" ask someone at the information desk for the person who handles employment. If you'd rather volunteer, I think most hospitals have volunteer coordinators. They will tell you what opportunities are available. Don't worry about sounding silly...I'm sure they'd be thrilled to have you! Good luck [​IMG]
     
  4. doctor_sig

    doctor_sig Member

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    If you're interested in volunteering, there's no reason the hospital wouldn't take you. Granted, you might not get a great job, but it puts you in the environment and gives you the opportunity to see what dealing with patients is like. It may also lead to a paying job down the line. If you play your cards right, you may be able to meet some doctors who wouldn't mind having you shadow them. Really, you have nothing to lose here. Hospitals all depend somewhat on volunteers, and every one I've been to had some sort of program. It looks great on an application and is a good experience in general...call today and get it set up for this summer.

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    Dr. Sig
    *disclaimer* All opinions are worth
    what you paid for them.
     
  5. buttercup

    buttercup Senior Member

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    M- most hospitals have a volunteer coordinator in their HR department. Just call and they will ask you your address and send you an application (don't worry about the app- I think it's just to screen for anything that might be of concern in a hospital) then you mail that in, have an orientation, and can get started.
     
  6. Dr JPH

    Dr JPH Banned
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    Mnemosyne-

    If you can't find a volunteer position in a hospital, find a family clinic or something like that. If you live in or near a city, find a clinic that handles homeless or poor people. These places are always looking for compassionate and hardworking people to lend a hand.

    Best of luck!!! [​IMG]

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    Josh Hazelton
    [email protected]
    University of the Sciences in Philadelphia
    "D.O. Wannabe"
     
  7. whynotme?

    whynotme? Senior Member

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    m- A hospice would also be a good place to volunteer. They usually don't see many and the experience would be invaluable in terms of actually helping people and seeing first hand how the human spirit evolves under circumstance. Good Luck!!

    [This message has been edited by whynotme? (edited 05-25-2000).]
     
  8. Carbon Klein

    Carbon Klein Senior Member

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    Most hospitals have a formal volunteers department. If you can't find their number in the phone book, then pay the hospital a visit and ask the receptionists sitting at the information desk at the front lobby..chances are, he/she is a volunteer. They can direct you to the dept.

    Many hospitals give priority to premeds. I was a premed when I asked to be placed in the ER and yep, they put me on the top of the list. I was not in medical school and I didn't get my AMCAS in yet, but they took my word for it and got me a position in the ER...for which I was eternally grateful since I was never more BORED than the hours I spent doing the graveyard Sat night/Sun morn shift in the ER.

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  9. Carbon Klein

    Carbon Klein Senior Member

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    When I wanted to shadow a neurosurgeon, I called up UCSF's dept of neurosurgery and they said unless I'm a UCSF med student, then it is absolutely out of the question.

    I then went on all these UCSF websites and decided to try and get a volunteer job as a researcher instead. I emailed about 75-100 people (including residents, attendings, lab assistants and lab directors). I got about 10 replies, most of them courtesy rejections and 3 interviews. I was offered two jobs and I took the one with the neurosurgeon. Not only did I get a publication out of this, but I also got to shadow an attending neurosurgeon during clinics, rounds, conferences and cases (in the OR). It was an amazing opportunity that was literally dropped into my laps.

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  10. Carbon Klein

    Carbon Klein Senior Member

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    I should mention that at the first interview, they offered to put me on the payroll (UCSF Pain Clinical Research Center) and the neurosurgeon was the second interview. I didn't schedule the third interviewer (a genetics lab) because it wasn't as "me" as the neurosurg offer.

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  11. buttercup

    buttercup Senior Member

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    Carbon- I think UCSF is more restrictive than most in terms of neurosurg. shadowing b/c of the recent merger with Stanford. I went to Stanford Undergrad, and during the time of the merger, was allowed to shadow chief neurosurgeon Gary Steinberg, but only b/c I was in the med schools neuroanatomy class. I asked one of the OR nurses about this and she said they had had legal probs b/c some of the surgeons were bringing in kids as young as high schoolers, and it created a mess.

    Thought I'd keep you up on the gossip [​IMG]
     
  12. scully

    scully Senior Member

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    Wow! What a fantastic opportunity. CK--what kind of qualifications did you have for that research position? I don't have a BA in science, but I am wondering if I could do something similar. Thank you for any advice!
     
  13. Carbon Klein

    Carbon Klein Senior Member

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    Didn't UCSF and Stanford split up last year? I don't remember if I started before or after the split up...I started Feb 99 and I didn't follow the residents, I followed two of the junior attendings at SFGH (McKalip and Holland). I mainly worked with Dr McKalip in the office for the clinical research project (lots of statistics and KFOG classic rock and roll music...arrgggh). I would shadow both neurosurgeons on the floors, but that was not part of the "job" description...it was a perk that was given to me as "payment" for spending time on the research project.

    As far as qualifications goes, the main one was that I was willing to work for free. I was basically a third year med student who dropped out of a foreign school to apply to AMCAS and had one year free. I was also a neurobiology major from Berkeley, but almost 6 years have passed from the time I took my last neuroscience course and the time I started at UCSF. The thing that was important about this opportunity was that I was allowed to set my own schedule (I was also volunteering as a tutor of grade school kids at the local church as well as applying for AMCAS and studying for the MCAT), so that really made life easy for me.

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