Does volunteering have to be relevant to medicine? Watch

polerat
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 2 years ago
#1
I understand that you need to have done work experience in a clinical setting to show that you know what you are getting yourself into.
Im just wondering whether other types of experiences, such as working as a language assistant (showing that you worked with a variety of age groups, responsibility etc) and being president of a society (leadership, communication skills etc) are also taken equally into account? And if these volunteering activities can be used to somewhat differentiate yourself from some of the other applicants?

Thanks in advance!
0
reply
ChkATM
Badges: 1
Rep:
?
#2
Report 2 years ago
#2
(Original post by polerat)
I understand that you need to have done work experience in a clinical setting to show that you know what you are getting yourself into.
Im just wondering whether other types of experiences, such as working as a language assistant (showing that you worked with a variety of age groups, responsibility etc) and being president of a society (leadership, communication skills etc) are also taken equally into account? And if these volunteering activities can be used to somewhat differentiate yourself from some of the other applicants?

Thanks in advance!
It's not what you've done, but rather what you've gained. The things in the above list sound like fantastic ideas which I'm sure would impress My experiences were both medical and non-medical and in fact the non-medical experiences were the ones discussed at interview!
0
reply
ZH786
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#3
Report 2 years ago
#3
I want to study medicine and have been volunteering with the red cross as an event first aid volunteers. so your volunteer role does show some of the qualities needed in a healthcare environment but I would strongly recommend getting experience in a role related to medicine e.g in pharmacy , hospital , GP surgery, hospice. as although you will stand out with your current role you would need more experience. it is recommended to have 4-6 weeks of experience and I would try to get experience in at least 2 different roles as it shows more understanding and variety. BUT THE ROLES YOU LISYED I WOULD DEFINITELY DO - MAKES YOU STAND OUT FROM OTHER APPLICANTS BUT DO MORE CLINICAL BASED EXPEREINCE JUST TO BALNCE THINGS OUT AND STILL GIVE YOU A GOOD CHANCE
1
reply
UniAdmissions
Badges: 2
Rep:
?
#4
Report 2 years ago
#4
(Original post by polerat)
I understand that you need to have done work experience in a clinical setting to show that you know what you are getting yourself into.
Im just wondering whether other types of experiences, such as working as a language assistant (showing that you worked with a variety of age groups, responsibility etc) and being president of a society (leadership, communication skills etc) are also taken equally into account? And if these volunteering activities can be used to somewhat differentiate yourself from some of the other applicants?

Thanks in advance!
Hi polerat

When it comes to work experience it really is about what you have gained from it and having the ability to reflect maturely on that, rather than what the experience was.

If you are able to communicate what you have gained from the experiences, and it sounds as though you are already doing that, then those experiences are important to include and can certainly strengthen your application.

Universities understand that not everyone has access to the same opportunities, which is why it is a great idea to look for the skills and insights you have gained in any opportunity you have had.

I hope that is useful. Do get in touch if you have any questions... always happy to help!

UniAdmissions
1
reply
Mutmit287
  • Community Assistant
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#5
Report 2 years ago
#5
(Original post by polerat)
I understand that you need to have done work experience in a clinical setting to show that you know what you are getting yourself into.
Im just wondering whether other types of experiences, such as working as a language assistant (showing that you worked with a variety of age groups, responsibility etc) and being president of a society (leadership, communication skills etc) are also taken equally into account? And if these volunteering activities can be used to somewhat differentiate yourself from some of the other applicants?

Thanks in advance!
As everyone has said its less about what you have done and more about what you have taken away from it. These seem like great opportunities all of which will improve your skills.

I personally think getting some medically relevant work experience or voluntary work is very very beneficial at giving you an insight into the career which can be important at interview. So do try to get something medically related if you can.
1
reply
Beska
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#6
Report 2 years ago
#6
(Original post by polerat)
I understand that you need to have done work experience in a clinical setting to show that you know what you are getting yourself into.
Im just wondering whether other types of experiences, such as working as a language assistant (showing that you worked with a variety of age groups, responsibility etc) and being president of a society (leadership, communication skills etc) are also taken equally into account? And if these volunteering activities can be used to somewhat differentiate yourself from some of the other applicants?

Thanks in advance!
There's a difference between work experience (that preferably needs to be medical - you cannot really reflect on e.g. work experience at a graphic design company, which I did during sixth form, and apply it to understanding what a doctor does) and voluntary work, which is you getting your hands dirty and volunteering in a caring role, whatever it may be. Commonly this is at a care home, children's group, etc. but anywhere you can develop your soft skills. A third category that isn't classed within 'voluntary work' is extra-curricular work, such as being part of a society. These develop very important skills like leadership, etc. that are important.

All three are equally important but it's important to distinguish between the three to ensure you search out as many opportunities as possible.
2
reply
polerat
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#7
Report Thread starter 2 years ago
#7
(Original post by Natalierm2707)
As everyone has said its less about what you have done and more about what you have taken away from it. These seem like great opportunities all of which will improve your skills.

I personally think getting some medically relevant work experience or voluntary work is very very beneficial at giving you an insight into the career which can be important at interview. So do try to get something medically related if you can.
I am trying to get medically related work experience but it is next to impossible. Every place I tried say no for one reason or another. I have only been successful in volunteering in a nursing home but hospitals and GP clinics are almost impossible...
0
reply
Pinkberry_y
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#8
Report 2 years ago
#8
If you're volunteering as involved being around people in some way shape or form and you've learnt something from it which has helped you decide medicine is for you and developed you as a person then it's relevant
0
reply
meddad
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#9
Report 2 years ago
#9
(Original post by polerat)
I am trying to get medically related work experience but it is next to impossible. Every place I tried say no for one reason or another. I have only been successful in volunteering in a nursing home but hospitals and GP clinics are almost impossible...
It certainly can be difficult to find those sort of opportunities unless you have contacts in the medical profession or sometimes by applying a year or more in advance.

The nursing home experience is really good though. Try to get an insight into how people working there work as a team and interact with each other. Is there a resident or visiting nurse who may be willing to let you accompany him/her on their rounds? Even if not, try to observe what it's like for the residents living with a long term health condition. Reflect on what that has taught you about whether you want to work in the medical profession.

If other opportunities are limited then try to think more widely - is there an elderly relative or neighbour you can help who may also be willing to talk about some of their healthcare experiences. This may give you an insight which can be used in your personal statement and you may learn just as much in that context as working in a GP's reception (for example).

Is there anybody in the medical profession you or your family or friends know who would be willing to talk about their role, what they like and dislike about the job etc. This can also give you insight.

When you've done your best with all this, then factor it into your application process. Whether your work experience and volunteering is strong or less strong may affect where you apply. Some Medical Schools give heavy weighting to strong Personal Statements. At the other end of the spectrum you can find that the selection criteria for interview at some Med schools doesn't involve them reading the PS and it's not available to the interviewers either. What all of them will expect though is for you to be able to explain why you want to apply for medicine, what you have done to investigate a healthcare career and what insight you have gained from the experiences you have been able to arrange.

Good luck
1
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

University open days

  • Birkbeck, University of London
    Undergraduate Open Day - Startford Undergraduate
    Thu, 21 Mar '19
  • University of Wolverhampton
    Postgraduate Open Evening Postgraduate
    Thu, 21 Mar '19
  • Edge Hill University
    Undergraduate and Postgraduate - Campus Tour Undergraduate
    Fri, 22 Mar '19

Where do you need more help?

Which Uni should I go to? (61)
14.95%
How successful will I become if I take my planned subjects? (41)
10.05%
How happy will I be if I take this career? (78)
19.12%
How do I achieve my dream Uni placement? (59)
14.46%
What should I study to achieve my dream career? (44)
10.78%
How can I be the best version of myself? (125)
30.64%

Watched Threads

View All