Volunteer experience

Volunteer experience #

Medical schools desire students who are committed to serving others.  As a physician you’ll need to provide care and comfort to people facing illness. You’ll be called upon to support to others, at possibly the worst moments of their lives. By volunteering in your community, you can build skills that will help you in your work with patients and demonstrate your commitment to serving others.

Volunteering can give you experience with people from varying backgrounds and situations, which will help you develop the interpersonal skills needed. We recommend that you intentionally place yourself in a role where you provide direct support to others.  Doing so can help you develop skills in listening, comforting, and helping others work through distressing situations—all skills valuable for a physician.

In addition, volunteering helps you gain experience in translating your desire for change into action. The skills you gain in working to find creative solutions to improve the lives of others in your community will be helpful as a physician.

Later, medical schools will be interested to know the following: What did you gain through volunteering?  How did volunteering change you?  Why was the experience important or meaningful to you?

The Bloomington Volunteer Network can link you with opportunities to get involved in Bloomington and the surrounding areas.

When choosing how to volunteer consider this question: "If you had the power to change one thing in the world, what would it be?" Depending on your answer – whether it is ending hunger, eliminating poverty, reducing the stigma of mental illness, or something else – think about a way in which you could work to make a small difference in the lives of others in your community. For some advice on how to do that, come meet with a HPPLC advisor!

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