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What are the ways to explore different medical professions in university?

I am a current senior going into a 4-year university, upcoming fall, to pursue my dreams of working in the medical field. I am still unsure of how I find my place in the medical field world. I've heard of behind-the-scenes doctors and those with patient care and want to know more.

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Elizabeth (Betsy)’s Answer

Gabriell,

Kudos to you! The world is always in need of dedicated medical professionals like you aspire to be. It's heartening to see your passion for the medical field.

Firstly, I suggest you reach out to your school counselor. They might have valuable resources and guidance to help you explore various medical professions. If possible, try to visit "pre-med" programs at the universities you're considering. You may find deans and program leaders there who can provide insights for students like you, who are still deciding on a specific medical discipline. They can offer detailed advice on what to expect in each field of study.

Moreover, if you're up for it, consider connecting with local hospitals or medical universities in your area. Ask about "information days" or "career fairs". These events can be excellent opportunities to understand more about the medical needs of your local community.

Wishing you the best of luck!
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Kathleen’s Answer

Good for you ! Healthcare is an exciting, rewarding field with a vast array of possibilities. Consider your strengths, your talents,interests and abilities, your compassion quotient, whether you enjoy a lot of contact with others or would prefer a minimal amount, then do some research into the various fields. Job fairs are a good way to get more information about the different possibilities and the PR department of hospitals may be willing to help. Many schools have career centers that can help steer you in a specific direction of interest. Wherever you may fit, you are choosing a profession that makes a vital impact on the world . Best to you!
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James Constantine’s Answer

Hello Gabriell,

Exploring Different Medical Professions in University

When entering a 4-year university to pursue a career in the medical field, there are several ways to explore different medical professions to find your place in the healthcare industry. Here are some steps you can take:

Academic Advising: One of the first steps you can take is to meet with an academic advisor at your university’s pre-health or health professions advising office. They can provide guidance on the various medical professions available, the academic requirements for each, and help you plan your coursework accordingly.

Shadowing: Shadowing professionals in different medical fields is a great way to gain firsthand experience and insight into what a typical day looks like for various healthcare professionals. You can reach out to local hospitals, clinics, or healthcare facilities to inquire about shadowing opportunities.

Volunteering: Volunteering at hospitals, nursing homes, or community health centers can also give you exposure to different medical professions. By interacting with patients and healthcare providers, you can get a sense of the roles and responsibilities of different healthcare professionals.

Internships: Some universities offer internship programs that allow students to gain practical experience in different medical settings. Internships can provide valuable hands-on experience and help you determine which area of healthcare aligns best with your interests and skills.

Informational Interviews: Conducting informational interviews with professionals in various medical fields can provide valuable insights into their career paths, daily responsibilities, and challenges they face. Networking with alumni or professionals through platforms like LinkedIn can help you connect with individuals willing to share their experiences.

Extracurricular Activities: Participating in extracurricular activities related to healthcare, such as student organizations, research projects, or volunteering events, can further expose you to different aspects of the medical field and help you build relevant skills.

Research Opportunities: Getting involved in research projects within the university’s medical school or related departments can deepen your understanding of specific areas within the medical field and introduce you to potential career paths in research or academia.

By actively engaging in these exploration methods during your time at university, you can gain valuable insights into the diverse range of medical professions available and make informed decisions about your future career path in healthcare.

Top 3 Authoritative Sources Used:

Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC): AAMC provides comprehensive resources and information on various medical professions, educational pathways, and career options within the healthcare industry.

American Medical Association (AMA): AMA offers insights into different specialties within medicine, professional development opportunities, and guidance on exploring diverse career paths in healthcare.

National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH provides information on research opportunities, funding programs, and career development resources for students interested in pursuing careers in biomedical research and related fields.

God Bless, JC.
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Hwal’s Answer

Gabriell,

It looks like you may be interested more specifically in medicine vs more generally in health care, and I see other posters have offered a wide range of information and advice. Because health care is such a vast field of opportunities, I would encourage you to think about why you want to pursue a career in medicine, specifically. As a PA, I find medical practice to be everything I had hoped and wanted it to be, but it's not without challenges - some unique to the practice of medicine, others affecting many of us in frontline health care. Here are some ways for you to explore who PAs are, what they do, and how one can become a PA:

https://www.aapa.org/career-central/become-a-pa/

https://www.pasdothat.net/

Let me know if you have any specific questions I can help with. Good luck!

Hwal
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