Bing tracking

Pre-Health Opportunities

When you are preparing for a career in the health sciences, what you do outside of class matters. Experiences like volunteering at a local clinic, serving as a CNA, or working as a medical scribe offer opportunities to identify your interests and talents, as well as the chance to observe the various roles within a medical team.  Spending significant time in a clinical or hospital setting will not only deepen your understanding of the career you are interested in, but will also help you identify and gain the skills that are needed to succeed.  Finally, opportunities like these provide excellent material for discussion in your professional school applications, diversify your resume, and create connections with working professionals.

If you are interested in medical school in particular, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) has an excellent site designed to help students gain medical experience: https://www.aamc.org/students/aspiring/experience/

Check out our list of:

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteering works best, for both you and the organization, when done over a sustained period of time.  You can build relationships with patients, understand the workings of your organization and its various roles, and increase your skills and abilities much more when you volunteer regularly at one location.  Through these volunteer and opportunities you will also get to know professionals who may allow you to shadow them or even write a letter of recommendation for you.

Allina Health

In addition to regular college volunteer opportunities, the Health Care Serve & Learn Experience provides volunteers who commit to six hours per week for a total of 72 hours per semester the opportunity to meet with healthcare professionals such as physicians, nurses, PTs, OTs, medical imaging techs and lab techs.
Augsburg Campus Kitchen
Augsburg Campus Kitchen offers different types of service learning experiences, different times to fit into student schedules, and levels of commitment depending on how involved a student wants to be. This is a great way to learn about the relationship between food and health, to work with people from different backgrounds and cultures, and to become meaningfully involved in their community. Opportunities include:

  • Delivery shifts- Serve a meal at a community center, homeless shelter or senior apartments
  • Gleaning shifts- Collect surplus produce from farmers markets and move fresh, organic vegetables into low-income communities
  • Augsburg/Brian Coyle Farmers Market shifts- Help set up and run the weekly West Bank Farmers Markets (Tuesdays) and contribute to making fresh food more accessible in this community
  • Cooking shifts- Lead or participate in a cooking class and help make healthy meals to be delivered around the community.

Augsburg Health Commons

The Health Commons hosts drop-in health centers dedicated to serving those in need. The people who come to the Health Commons are from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. Everyone is welcome, and all  services are provided free of charge. Health concerns might include nutrition, medication, stress management, respiratory conditions, injuries, skin problems, and chronic disease such as diabetes and hypertension. Frequently, people come to the Health Commons for its easy access, its supportive environment, and assistance with connecting to other healthcare resources. Volunteer opportunities are available in the Cedar-Riverside Neighborhood and Downtown Minneapolis at Central Lutheran Church.

Children’s Hospital

Fairview Hospice-Contact Anne Myers-Richards (612-728-2408 or amyersr1@fairview.org)

Gillette Children’s Hospital

HCMC

Health Care Serve & Learn Experience

Hope Dental Clinic

La Clinica

Lyngblomsten

NorthPoint Health and Wellness Center

Regions Hospital

St. David’s Center– Contact Mali Anderson (manderson@stdavidscenter.org)

TRIA (PT Volunteer and Shadowing & Observation)

University of Minnesota Medical Center

For more volunteer opportunities, check out the Macalester College list.

Educational Programs

 

Children’s Observer Program

Dental School Preparation Programs

The University of Minnesota School of Dentistry offers high school and undergraduate students programs to get a head start on dental school.

Des Moines University’s Health Professions Advanced Summer Scholars Program

Des Moines University’s Health Professions Advanced Summer Scholars program – DMU Health P.A.S.S. – is a great way for promising college sophomores and juniors to prepare for and enhance their chances of getting into medical school and other health professions programs.

Minnesota’s Future Doctors Program

Minnesota’s Future Doctors (MFD) prepares pre-medical students from Minnesota communities underrepresented in medicine for admission to medical school.

Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP)

The Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) is a free summer enrichment program focused on improving access to information and resources for college students interested in the health professions. SHPEP’s goal is to strengthen the academic proficiency and career development of students underrepresented in the health professions and prepare them for a successful application and matriculation to health professions schools. These students include, but are not limited to, individuals who identify as African American/Black, American Indian and Alaska Native and Hispanic/Latino, and who are from communities of socioeconomic and educational disadvantage.

The Summer Premedical Academic Enrichment Program (SPAEP)

This program through the University of Pittsburgh will be held June 6, 2016 through July 22, 2016, Application Deadline: February 29, 2016. For questions, contact Ms. Rhonda Matthews, rmatthews@medschool.pitt.edu, (412) 648-8987. Find more information by clicking through their link.

Virginia Commonwealth University

The Summer Academic Enrichment Program or SAEP at Virginia Commonwealth University is an intensive, six-week inter-professional program designed to enhance the preparation of junior and senior undergraduates, and post-baccalaureate students, actively pursuing enrollment in a health professions school. Students apply to one of four tracks (dentistry, medicine, pharmacy or physical therapy), which will determine their discipline specific concentration. Upon completion of the program, participants will have the tools that will help them to assess their strengths and weaknesses in regards to application into a health professions school. The 2016 application deadline is February 1, 2016.  SAEP will run from May 23 – July 1, 2016.

Children’s Observer Program

Dental School Preparation Course

The Dental School Preparation Course offered at the University Of Minnesota School Of Dentistry is a 20-hour intensive program designed to prepare students for the field of Dentistry.

Des Moines University’s Health Professions Advanced Summer Scholars Program

Des Moines University’s Health Professions Advanced Summer Scholars program – DMU Health P.A.S.S. – is a great way for promising college sophomores and juniors to prepare for and enhance their chances of getting into medical school and other health professions programs.

Minnesota’s Future Doctors Program

Minnesota’s Future Doctors (MFD) prepares pre-medical students from Minnesota communities underrepresented in medicine for admission to medical school.

Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP)

The Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) is a free summer enrichment program focused on improving access to information and resources for college students interested in the health professions. SHPEP’s goal is to strengthen the academic proficiency and career development of students underrepresented in the health professions and prepare them for a successful application and matriculation to health professions schools. These students include, but are not limited to, individuals who identify as African American/Black, American Indian and Alaska Native and Hispanic/Latino, and who are from communities of socioeconomic and educational disadvantage.

Ohio University Summer Scholars Program in the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine

This program is a rigorous five-week premedical program to help participants become more competitive in the medical school admissions process and be more successful after acceptance into medical school. Program runs late May for five weeks, and consists of courses, lectures, and labs designed to be rigorous, intensive, and realistic. Students will be reimbursed for travel costs, receive program materials, room, and a “modest living allowance”.

Doctor of Psychology Diversity Scholars Program at University of San Francisco School of Nursing and Health Professions

The Diversity Scholars Program is for USF PsyD prospective students. This two-day program includes dinner with current PsyD students, meeting with key USF leadership including the Dean, roundtable discussion with PsyD professionals, student-led campus tour, and priority interviews for applicants into the grad program. Transportation and costs covered.

 

Scholarships

UDALL Undergraduate Scholarship

The Udall Scholarship provides

  • Access to the Udall Alumni Network: an association of change-makers, working in Indian country and environmental fields, sharing innovative ideas, professional advice, and job and internship opportunities.
  • Five days in Tucson, Arizona, at Scholar Orientation: extending your professional network, meeting other scholars and alumni, and learning new skills.
  • Up to $7,000 for eligible academic expenses. (See our FAQs for scholarship award benefits and conditions.)

Research Fellowships and Internships

Research is an important part of the health field, with labs throughout the world focused on finding new discoveries and treatments that will be relevant for today’s most pressing health issues.  If you have an interest in both health care and biomedical research, it may be beneficial to gain experience in both areas to help you discover which you find most engaging.  Research experiences offer students the opportunity to collect, analyze, and think critically about data, and to practice writing and presentation skills in a professional setting.  Below you will find research opportunities that will allow you to build these skills while researching important health-related issues.

AAMC

Hackensack UMC Summer Clinical Research

Hennepin County Medical Center Emergency Department

The Jackson Laboratory Summer Program

The Jackson Laboratory is an independent, not-for-profit research institution. The Laboratory’s work is dedicated to the betterment of human health through research in mammalian genetics.

Lupus Foundation of Minnesota

Mayo Innovation Scholars Program- Augsburg University

Mayo Clinic scientists have developed new products that may be marketable. These products are submitted to the Mayo Clinic Office of Intellectual Property (OIP) for a thorough investigation of marketability. One of these products or inventions is assigned to each MISP team.  Augsburg’s team of five will work together to understand the science and applications of the projects or innovations and analyze the market potential. The end result of the team investigation will be a business plan and final presentation at Mayo Clinic.

Mayo Clinic Research Opportunities:

Medical College of Wisconsin Summer Research Program (Recommended by an Auggie)

The Summer Program for Undergraduate Research (SPUR) provides the opportunity for students to learn first-hand the potential of the biomedical sciences as an interesting and fulfilling career.  The SPUR program provides laboratory experience in science, in which the undergraduate works with graduate faculty, students, and staff on significant ongoing basic science research issues.

Minneapolis Heart Institute

NIH Summer Internship Program in Biomedical Research

NIH Undergraduate Scholarship Program-The NIH UGSP will pay up to $20,000 per academic year in tuition, educational expenses, and reasonable living expenses to scholarship recipients. Scholarships are awarded for 1 year, and can be renewed up to 4 years.  For each full or partial scholarship year, you get to experience two NIH service obligations:  a 10-week Summer Laboratory Experience at the NIH and employment at the NIH after graduation. Must have “exceptional financial need” to be eligible (see link for details).

Roswell Park Cancer Institute Summer Research Participation Program in Science

The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP)

This program through the University of Pittsburgh will be held May, 23 2016 and end July 29, 2016.  Early application deadline is February 1 and the final deadline is March 1. For questions, contact Ms. Carol Williams, cawillia@medschool.pitt.edu, (412) 648-9003. For more information, click through their link.

Washington University in St. Louis

The Summer Research Program in Global Health is an eight-week program open to: full-time college undergraduates; graduate students pursuing a Master in Public Health (MPH), Social Work (MSW), or Population Health Sciences (MPHS); and medical students looking to gain experience in the field of global health research.

For information on additional research opportunities, please visit our On-Campus and Off-Campus Research pages.

Work Opportunities

There are a number of ways in which you can get experience in the medical field while earning money.  Below is a list of jobs that students may do during the school year, during the summer, or immediately following graduation to gain medical-related experience.

  • CNA
  • PCA
  • EMT
  • Pharmacy Tech
  • Phlebotomy Tech
  • EKG Tech
  • Operating Room Tech
  • Medical Scribe

If you are planning on applying for medical school, we strongly recommend that you consider working as a Medical Scribe.  Scribes provide medical documentation services for physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners or other providers.  Under the physician’s close direction the scribe will usually witness the patient interview and physical exam, and create a medical record for the patient based on the interaction. Scribes synthesize and enter this information into the electronic medical record. Scribes are also fundamental to workflow in the clinical setting, following up on lab results, facilitating specialist consultation,  and assuring that the radiological procedures and results are obtained in a timely manner.

Check out the local scribing companies and organizations that hire scribes listed below:

Gap Year Ideas

Many students choose to take a year (or more) off between their undergraduate studies and professional school.  There are many worthwhile ways to spend this time including working in the health field, gaining lab experience, traveling or studying abroad, and working in community service.  Below you will find a number of opportunities that may help you gain skills and encourage personal growth during your time between programs.

NIH Postbaccalaureate Intramural Research Training Award

Over Seas Gap Year

AmeriCorps

Teach for America

City Year

Lutheran Volunteer Corps

Apply for National Fellowships and Scholarships through URGO – Teach, study or research abroad, all while adding an impressive award to your resume.