Which work experience is better for non traditional pre-meds?

Nov 15, 2010
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Which work experience is better for non traditional pre-meds?

Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) at a highly ranked medical school

or

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) in a small private CRO

Thanks for your advice!
 
Last edited:

Richardh

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Jul 3, 2008
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choose the one where you will have lots of interaction with not only patients but also doctors and nurses. don't choose an occupation where you will be asked to do lots of paper work. it's best for you to be involved in a job where you're learning and getting a feel of how it is to be a future physician.
 
OP
T
Nov 15, 2010
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choose the one where you will have lots of interaction with not only patients but also doctors and nurses. don't choose an occupation where you will be asked to do lots of paper work. it's best for you to be involved in a job where you're learning and getting a feel of how it is to be a future physician.
Thank you for your opinion. Both the CRC and CRA positions involve a lot of administrative paperwork. CRA's provide oversight and train physicians, nurses, and CRC's (in clinical trials and device trials). A CRC coordinates a trial in a facility, scheduling patient visits, lab studies, drug administration and recruits patients, etc. You are interacting with health care professionals in both positions.
 

grt398

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Sep 17, 2008
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I would vote for CRC if you can get the position with a good PI. I realize it's hard to gauge during an interview but if the PI has a history of prior med students or other people they have mentored, that would be a good thing. The ideal scenario is to work in a position that allows to do research, shadow, interact with patients and offers at least the possibility that you can contribute in some way to a publication or do a case review yourself etc.
 

jtsai

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Feb 8, 2007
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Which work experience is better for non traditional pre-meds?

Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC) at a highly ranked medical school

or

Clinical Research Associate (CRA) in a small private CRO

Thanks for your advice!
I would suggest working where ever you think would offer the best letter of recommendation. Be it, your PI...a physician...or someone who looks impressive. I worked as a CRA at an Army Medical Center, which offered many opportunities for LORs.

I would also suggest investigating the type of research you will coordinating or researching. If all else fails, pick the one you are most interested in.

Best of Luck to you.
 
Sep 21, 2010
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How do you find a research position as a non-trad? Do professors from universities take people in who are not students of the college? Probably not huh.
 
OP
T
Nov 15, 2010
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How do you find a research position as a non-trad? Do professors from universities take people in who are not students of the college? Probably not huh.
Yes it is true the medical school I currently work at happens to be my alma mater (that does help). I'm actually trying to determine if I should stay where I am or switch to a CRA position for a new experience.

Just do a pubmed search and find out what research you are interested in, then e-mail faculty with your CV asking for a position. You may have to start out in a non-paid position. Also be optimistic.

Good luck in your search!