right arrow
Make sure to check out our July Checklists for HS Juniors and HS Seniors. Consult these quick resources to get you started on the process this month.
GUEST STUDENT OF THE WEEK: ehales3 is a rising sophomore at Cornell University. As a high school student, she always thought that she wanted to study in a more urban environment, but has grown to love Ithaca and all that it offers. ASK HER ANYTHING!
As we work to adjust to the current reality, make sure to check out these dedicated COVID-19 resources: our directory of virtual campus tours, our directory of extended deadlines, as well as the list of schools going test optional this fall.


ahmedc786ahmedc786 40 replies8 threads Junior Member
edited May 28 in Pre-Med Topics
Hi, I will be starting pre medical studies at Hofstra and most likely will be studying Psychology as a major. Is there anything I should be doing right now before my freshman year starts in the fall? I have little knowledge on what I should be doing for anything other than GPA and MCAT. That much is straightforward, get good grades in pre reqs. But what should I do for research, volunteering, and extracurriculars? Is there a format I should be following, like a certain amount of hours. Would it be okay to just volunteer in a hospital/clinic? How would I go about starting research and extracurriculars that will help me get into medical school? If anyone can help me I'd would be very, very appreciative.
edited May 28
5 replies
· Reply · Share

Replies to: Premed

  • thumper1thumper1 78251 replies3525 threads Senior Member
    edited May 28
    @ahmedc786 are you saying you have a pre-Med intention but you haven’t ever shadowed a doctor, done any volunteer work related to this, discussed your plans with a practicing physician?

    I’ll tag @WayOutWestMom who will be able to provide you with a list of things you need to do if you are even considering medical school.
    Would it be okay to just volunteer in a hospital/clinic

    This would be a good thing to do, but until the Covid 19 situation positively changes, I doubt you will find this opportunity.
    edited May 28
    · Reply · Share
  • WayOutWestMomWayOutWestMom 10969 replies235 threads Senior Member
    Pre-med need to be involved in the expected pre-med ECs--

    1) Physician shadowing--in a variety of specialties, but shadowing must include primary care specialties

    This gives you an opportunity to see the day-to-day life of a doctor and how the day-to-day of healthcare operates. Primary care because the vast majority of physicians work in primary care.

    2) Clinical experience--where you are working directly with patients under the supervision of a medical personnel. (You need to be close enough "to smell the patient") This can be done at a hospital, but other clinical sites are also acceptable--nursing homes, groups homes for the mentally ill or physically disabled, hospice centers, stand alone surgical or cancer centers, local public health clinics, charitable healthcare delivery organizations like Healthcare for the Homeless or Planned Parenthood, etc.

    This provides the applicants with experience working with the sick, dying, injured, chronically ill, mentally ill, mentally or physically disabled, demented elderly and their families. This is the meat & potatoes of healthcare--and something not everyone is cut out for.

    3) Community service--preferably with disadvantaged communities/groups

    This because medicine is service profession and admissions members want to see a demonstration of your compassion and altruism in your service to others. (Also because the disadvantaged are your future patients. Not all patients are clean, English-speaking, educated or middle class.)

    4) Leadership roles in your activities

    This because physicians are the de facto leader of the health care team. They need to know how to provide effective leadership in trying situations.

    5) Research-- hands on experience, either lab-based or clinical

    This because students need to understand the potential and pitfalls of medical/ biomedical research. Lab experience gives student insights into how medical knowledge advances.

    6) In addition, some programs like to see applicants have had experience in teaching, tutoring or coaching.

    The word doctor is derived from the word "docere" which mean to teach in Latin. One of a physician's primary jobs is to educate their patients about their health conditions and how to manage them. And about how their lifestyle choices affect their health.

    The first 4 items on the list are absolutely "musts"--you can't get admitted without them. Adcomms rank them as being of "high importance" when making decision about who to interview and accept.

    #5 and #6 are in the "nice to have" category. Adcomms rank them as being of "medium importance" when making interview and admission decisions. However, some medical school highly value research and having significant research experience is important for those schools.
    · Reply · Share
  • oldlawoldlaw 325 replies14 threads Member
    It would also be a good idea to take a hard look at your current and future finances, as medical school costs a lot of money, and most medical students have debt. Here's the USNWR debt list:
    · Reply · Share
  • ahmedc786ahmedc786 40 replies8 threads Junior Member
    All right that helps alot!!
    For leadership experiences, would it have to be as a president of a club?
    As of now I am in religious leadership positions which I'll most likely continue to pursue throughout college.
    · Reply · Share
  • WayOutWestMomWayOutWestMom 10969 replies235 threads Senior Member
    There are many different ways to demonstrate leadership. Club president is just one of them.

    If you hold a leadership positions at your religious institution, by all means include those on your application.
    · Reply · Share
Sign In or Register to comment.

Recent Activity