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What do I need to do to be a Pediatric Physician?

I am hard working, love kids, loving helping people and being active. #medicine #physician #doctor #medical #physicians-assistant


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Suzanne’s Answer

Caroline, what a great question! It may be that becoming a pediatrician would be a great choice for you, especially if you also like science. To become a pediatrician (a physician who takes care of children) you first attend college and take pre-medical classes so that you can apply to medical school. Pre-medical classes which medical schools expect you to have taken and done well in are typically one year of biology with labs, one year of chemistry with labs, organic chemistry, physics and calculus. It is important when in college to meet with the pre-med/pre-healthcare advisor to be sure you are taking the right pre-med classes and getting the experiences which medical schools would like you to have. As long as you take these classes you can major in whatever interests you. Since you love kids you might consider taking child psychology or child development classes, for instance. You would want to get some practical exposure to children also. A paid job with children such as working in a childcare setting and/or a volunteer position such as tutoring kids after school would be good ways to be sure of your decision and to demonstrate to medical schools that you are serious about your interests. If you can get clinical experience, too, that would be great (should be easier after the pandemic is over). This might mean volunteering in a children's hospital or clinic. Medical school is typically four years after which you would do a pediatric residency which is typically three years.
Other ways to take care of children in heath care would include becoming a family physician (who cares for entire families) or as a physician's assistant or pediatric nurse practitioner. You can also look into careers in child psychology, education, child development if you don't want to go to medical school. There are lots of options!

Suzanne recommends the following next steps:

If you are in High school talk to your college counselor about making sure you're taking classes appropriate for your career goals.
Saved!
If you are in college, make an appointment with the pre-med or pre-healthcare counselor to be sure you are taking the right classes to apply to medical school.
Saved!
Check out the Pre-med section of this website from the American Academy of Pediatrics: https://services.aap.org/en/career-resources/pre-med/
Saved!
Try to talk to a pediatrician or another health care professional who cares for children. Ask them what their work involves.
Saved!

0
Updated Translate

Suzanne’s Answer

Caroline, what a great question! It may be that becoming a pediatrician would be a great choice for you, especially if you also like science. To become a pediatrician (a physician who takes care of children) you first attend college and take pre-medical classes so that you can apply to medical school. Pre-medical classes which medical schools expect you to have taken and done well in are typically one year of biology with labs, one year of chemistry with labs, organic chemistry, physics and calculus. It is important when in college to meet with the pre-med/pre-healthcare advisor to be sure you are taking the right pre-med classes and getting the experiences which medical schools would like you to have. As long as you take these classes you can major in whatever interests you. Since you love kids you might consider taking child psychology or child development classes, for instance. You would want to get some practical exposure to children also. A paid job with children such as working in a childcare setting and/or a volunteer position such as tutoring kids after school would be good ways to be sure of your decision and to demonstrate to medical schools that you are serious about your interests. If you can get clinical experience, too, that would be great (should be easier after the pandemic is over). This might mean volunteering in a children's hospital or clinic. Medical school is typically four years after which you would do a pediatric residency which is typically three years.
Other ways to take care of children in heath care would include becoming a family physician (who cares for entire families) or as a physician's assistant or pediatric nurse practitioner. You can also look into careers in child psychology, education, child development if you don't want to go to medical school. There are lots of options!

Suzanne recommends the following next steps:

If you are in High school talk to your college counselor about making sure you're taking classes appropriate for your career goals.
Saved!
If you are in college, make an appointment with the pre-med or pre-healthcare counselor to be sure you are taking the right classes to apply to medical school.
Saved!
Check out the Pre-med section of this website from the American Academy of Pediatrics: https://services.aap.org/en/career-resources/pre-med/
Saved!
Try to talk to a pediatrician or another health care professional who cares for children. Ask them what their work involves.
Saved!

Thank you so much, I appreciate it!! Caroline M.

You're welcome, Caroline. I really enjoyed seeing children in my practice as a family physician and hope that you, too, find a fulfilling career. Suzanne Sorkin

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