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If my intent is to go into a pre-med based college, what would my best extracurricular activities be?

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Like should I begin to work closely with doctors, and get hands-on experience or should I focus on more leadership based activities. Nishk S. Translate
Just as a basis I am only 15 years old and a sophomore in high school. Nishk S. Translate
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8 answers

Yasemin’s Answer

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Hi Nishk! There are great answers here! Adding to them, since you are 15 you may still be considered a little young to work directly with patients or in a medical environment per se. Right now I would focus on doing well in high school and getting into college. Once you are in college you can take part in different activities, such as research, and clinical activities such as being a volunteer in a hospital, shadowing a physician and non-clinical experiences as well. Remember it's quality not quantity that matters, that being said if you take part in a couple extracurriculars that matter to you and are time-committed that will seem more favorable to medical school admissions. There are a few activities you definitely want to take part, clinical and shadowing a physician. Why? Because it's very important to be able to work with patients and really be involved in the medical field so you know it is fit for you. When you are in college make sure you get to see a premed adviser because they will help guide you on this path to medical school by making sure you are taking the prerequisites needed. Be sure to check in with him or her a couple times a semester to make sure you are fulfilling the needs of a premed student. Also check out AAMC.org, they offer tons of information for students interested in the medical field. In addition it is important to be well-rounded so non-clinical activities can definitely help as well, such as tutoring or working in a soup kitchen. You can even begin non-clinical now, I use to part of Pass-It-Along at my high school and we would serve our community in different ways. In college check out campus related activities because there is a ton that can allow you to work with others, make sure to do what you love and find growth in these experiences. As a high school student now you can check out clubs or events in school that relate to science or the medical field but you definitely still have time. You can take part in sports as well and if you have a part time job or gain one later on it will also help with teamwork and leadership! I would advise to keep your grades up for now then expand your experiences as a college student!

Best of luck!

Yasemin recommends the following next steps:

  • check out AAMC.org
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Angela D.’s Answer

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This is a good question, Nishk! While I'm an educator, my son is now finishing up his last year of medical residency to become a rural-based Primary Care physician. I can tell you what he did to prepare for medical school. He became First Aid and CPR certified early on and kept up with those requirements. He also became a certified EMT (Emergency Medical Tech) and worked both in the field and as a medical assistant. I do know that some states have Junior EMT programs, where you can learn about emergency medical response and procedures. These are specifically designed for students aged 14-17 in preparation for national certification as an EMT at age 18 and above. My son also was involved in other volunteer medical experiences (clinics, hospitals, etc.), medical faculty research, shadowing doctors/nurses, etc. You may want to check out the website below from the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) where they provide suggestions and other support (choosing a medical career, applying and attending med school, applying and training in a residency). Wishing you the best in your endeavors, Dr. B

https://students-residents.aamc.org/applying-medical-school/article/finding-health-care-related-volunteer-opportunitie/

Angela D. recommends the following next steps:

  • Check out the AAMC website
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Haley’s Answer

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Hi! This is a great question that I definitely thought of when I was in high school. I just got into medical school, and I can honestly say that there are no "right" extracurricular activities. My best piece of advice is to focus on doing the things that you care about, and the pre-med part will follow. I did activities that were policy based and played a sport which I'm pretty sure made my application stand out. The one thing I would recommend is to shadow physicians, because that is the most helpful thing on this path. Hope this helps!
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Rachel’s Answer

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A research publication is looked very favorably on by admissions committees.

Otherwise, GPA and MCAT are by far the most important aspects of your application.
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Estelle’s Answer

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Variety....follow your passion. You also need to volunteer at free clinics, & hospitals as well as missionary work If possible.
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Richard’s Answer

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Try to find opportunities to pursue research.

Volunteer at your local hospital or low-income clinic. Ask physicians, PAs or other clinical providers if you can shadow them.
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Samantha’s Answer

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It can definitely help to have medical-based extracurriculars, but you also shouldn't limit yourself! If there is a sport or club that you are passionate about, join it! Doctors have to be well-rounded people as well, and medical school admissions take those other activities into account when reviewing.
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Shweta’s Answer

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This is a good question. I have seen around me that whoever is wishing to go to Medical school.. can shadowing the doctors and start working with EMS.
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