Could you please elaborate on what kind of hospital volunteering would be actual "medical work?"
King, here's my disclaimer - I don't know a large sample of high schoolers, their credentials, and how successful they were in getting into the medical track. Of the ones I know in "guaranteed" programs, the most success was for those who weren't too picky on where they went as long as they got into a "guaranteed" program. For us locally, it would be something like this:
Temple</a> University School of Medicine Office of Admissions: Special Admissions Programs</p>
<p>Get decent enough grades and SATs to get into Duquesne or W&J, keep your stats reasonable while there, and you can get into Temple with GPAs and MCATs significantly lower than for the "open market" candidates. If you have much higher numbers, presumably more such programs will open their doors to you.</p>
<p>As for your question, it's not unheard of among HS Juniors or Seniors is to approach a doctor who has a research project in a med school, either directly or through intermediaries like the school counselor, your family physician, or someone else connected with the research institution who you or your parents know. Then you work a several hours a week with the researcher, maybe with no direct patient contact, but possibly with lab animals, and specimens, and such. After doing this for six months or a year, hopefully you have a pretty in-depth understanding in that area (perhaps even your name in a paper). Such a project will be much more professional than a pure high schooler's class project because of the money, expertise, the protocols, and infrastructure that the med school brings. You then lead with this project in your essays, and in your interview, you have the opportunity to share your knowledge in the subject, research protocols, etc.</p>
<p>Again, don't rely on just my anecdotal knowledge for what is a good hook, but check with others who have got in to understand what it takes.</p>