Choices for a Pre-Med
For all you seniors out there, it’s that time of the year: college applications. If many of you are like me, you’re looking for schools that give you ample opportunities for a pre-med, but are having trouble interpreting what exactly are “ample opportunities.” Maybe you’re not even sure if you’re still going to pursue a career in medicine down the road.
Sure, Vandy has a top-rated medical center and school right at its doorstep, rigorous academics, lots of prestige, and ample research opportunities, but what’s an undergraduate student to do with all these resources in making such an important decision?
Rest assured, Vandy prepares its pre-med students very well in guiding them through the process. Vandy’s Health Professions Advisory Office (HPAO) hosts many opportunities to volunteer in the community and get involved.
The biggest opportunity the HPAO gives to its students is an official doctor shadowing program. For many pre-meds, shadowing is a great way to see what a doctor actually does up-close and a great way to help you decide your career in medicine. Any interested student just needs to fill out a few health forms and turn them in to the HPAO office at a specific date. From there, students can choose any doctor from any specialty they want in a given list. After choosing their desired doctors, students get their medical center card and contact their respective doctors. Within a week or two, students start shadowing their doctors on a flexible schedule for the entire semester. From there, they get to see their doctors work in action, observing what they do on a regular basis. I’m about to start my shadowing experience with a pediatric surgeon, so I’m super-stoked! I’ll be watching what goes on behind the operating rooms.
Shadowing is extremely important, not just in determining whether you still want to pursue a career in medicine and in determining what field you’d possibly want to specialize in, but also in your medical school applications.The fact that Vandy provides such an important aspect of your application and of your decision-making in a convenient and stress-free program speaks miles about how well Vandy prepares its students for success. And if a school-hosted doctor shadowing program isn’t enough, Vandy’s medical center hosts an official volunteering program every year, assigning interested students volunteering positions in different settings for one whole year.
Basically, Vandy provides your valuable shadowing AND volunteering hours in the same year. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. For those looking for schools with great pre-med guidance and preparation, Vandy’s got you more than covered.