20 years ago I spent 6 years as a Medical Service Specialist in the USAF reserves. That is the only ‘clinical’ experience I have. However, 10 years ago my 6 year old daughter was diagnosed with Leukemia and for 3 years I became VERY knowledgeable in the so called ‘nuts and bolts’ of the medical community. For the last 7 years (since my 9 year old daughters death) I have been very active as a keynote speaker and volunteer with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, along with being a full time undergrad-pre-med. The time needed to devote to shadowing a doc would cut into my volunteer time, something I do not want to do. Some advice would be nice…should I be worried about my recent lack of ‘clinical’ experience or should I be confident that my whole life package of experiences should satisfy medschool admins?
Lilac, the point of clinical experience is simply to ensure that you know what you’re getting into - essentially it’s a way to submit your “pipe dream” to some reality testing. I’d say that your life experience has given you reality up the ying yang, wouldn’t you? You certainly will be able to demonstrate that you know what the practice of medicine entails based on your experiences.
Please accept my deepest condolences on your daughter’s death - a sadness I can’t begin to imagine. And I’d also like to thank you for your work with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. My mom is starting her fifth year of life with mantle cell lymphoma and the Society’s support has been extremely helpful for her and for all of us.
I agree with Mary (she’s a smart woman). I also want to point out that medical schools want to see that you are active with your community, not just a book worm. Your volunteer work will be a huge boost on your application.