Shadowing Hours.. From four years ago

Through my experiences of internships, global health minor, research and EMT training, I have cumulated over 400 hours of shadowing. However, the hours are from three years ago (four by the time I apply). The past few years I have completed Teach for America and have since stayed teaching high school algebra. I haven’t continued shadowing because teaching at a brand new high school takes about 50 hours a week. Then, from 2017-2019 with the TFA / grad school requirements, I also had to dedicate a majority of my weekends. I once heard on your podcast that shadowing and such experiences are about being able to articulate why you want to be a physician, which I feel like I can. I also feel like I can justify why I haven’t done any since / why I want to get back into the medical field after practicing in education. My ultimate question: do I apply this year without having a recent shadowing experience or do I apply next summer once I can get more recent hours either clinically or via shadowing? **I’m not in a rush and all other factors would be the same.

There are a few of us that are in the same train. And it seems like there are no clear answers. Do we still have a shot?

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Former teacher here. As long as you can articulate why you want to be a physician and have solid academic credentials, I say go for it! I’ve been away from the classroom for almost 3 years and I’ve been pleasantly surprised to learn that teaching and medicine have more similarities than I imagined. Both careers require teamwork, solid interpersonal skills, and the ability to explain concepts to others who may not know the subject/specialty as well as you. The experiences you mention will be valuable!