Volunteering or finding an internship opportunity in a clinic, hospital or senior center. (Realize this is difficult to do during COVID.)
Here's another link with information: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/careers/health-diagnosis-treatment-surgeons
Awesome to hear you want to become a neurosurgeon! The quick answer is that most students going into the medical field gain a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and then apply to medical school, gain specialization in neurosurgery, complete a residency, and finally become an independent neurosurgeon. A bit more detail below if you want to know more.
1. Look into schools that provide a good Biology and Pre-Med program that will prepare you for medical school and look really good on your applications. You want to make sure you find a good school for these these two programs since many students unfortunately drop out of STEM majors due to the harsh courses and at times not-so-great teaching faculty or resources to help you such as tutoring.
2. Your goal in college should be to obtain a GPA of 3.0 or higher since this is a requirement across most medical schools, during your college years try to build connections with others, with professors, and anyone that may help you along the way. Make sure you try and join clubs, participate in internships, and overall focus on activities and programs that will boost your resume for your medical school applications. Keep in mind that medical schools see thousands of applicants during their time and prioritize the people that stand out.
3. After completing your undergraduate in Biology or any similar degree, you must study for the MCAT (you may take this exam either junior year or senior year of college) ; a notoriously hard exam that will determine what schools will accept you based on this score and the other factors of your resume. When you find a school that’s right for you and you get accepted, you will complete 4 years of medical training for your future career.
4. Complete the Medical Licensing Exam during your internship in the last years or right after medical school. With this exam completed, you can now begin your residency which is essentially training with a current neurosurgeon to become one yourself.
5. Like I mentioned before, you will take a one-year internship at a hospital to begin to understand the procedures and how everything works at the hospitals. After this, you will begin your residency which takes about 6-8 years for neurosurgeons. During these years, you will shadow a neurosurgeon, watch how they work on a day to day basis and learn about procedures and examinations processes, at some point in this residency, you can begin to assist the neurosurgeon with examining patients and surgeries.
6. The “final” step is here, this is where you become State licensed and Board certified to practice medicine. There a number of exams you must take and with these complete, you can now begin to practice medicine in your field independently. Congrats!
7. Although you have completed everything to become a neurosurgeon, you have to stay up to date on all the newest technology, so every so often you can attend classes and seminars to make sure you are able to renew your license and certification.
Good Luck and I hope this helped!