What requirements are needed to work as a pediatrician?
I'm in the eleventh grade and I am exploring the different options of careers that I am leaning towards, a pediatrician is one of them. I love being around kids and I also love learning about the body so I'm very interested in learning more about this career. What are the skills and characteristics needed for this job? #pediatrician #career #kids
While you're an undergraduate doing med school prereqs, you will need to spend time shadowing physicians, volunteering, and developing your leadership skills through extracurriculars. It sounds like a lot, but you only have to do it one step at a time, as you're ready to move forward.
You then apply to medical school, spend four years learning about the body and clinical skills, followed by a residency (mandatory post-graduate training), anywhere from three to seven years. Also, most pediatric programs highly value research, so that's something to explore.
It's a very long journey, but not one that you have to take alone. A good thing to keep in mind is that you're going to reach your 30's either way – if you want to join the workforce after a bachelor's degree, you just don't know what you'll be doing in ten years. You're still going to reach your 30's as a pediatrician-in-training, you'll just have a better idea of what you'll be doing along the way.
Anirban recommends the following next steps:
When you actually apply to medical school do your research on what medical schools are looking for. Applying can be pricey and if you apply to schools that have minimum requirements you do not meet, then it will be a waste of money. After you submit your medical school applications you will start to get letters to invite you to an interview. Practice for that interview before going and look into the schools details, mission statements and other facts not only to help you in the interview but also see if that medical school is a good fit for you. Medical school is generally 4 years, 2 "book years" and 2 clinical years.
The process can seem long, tiring and a lot but keep your head up, work hard and it will all be worth it in the end. If you love children that is great but remember to be a pediatrician you will be dealing with a lot of parents. Communication skills, patience, empathy are all key components for pediatrics. Building a good relationship with your patient and their families are key.
Goodluck!!! You got this.