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volunteer experience


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gemelos
Rookie


Joined: 11 Nov 2007
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 4:04 pm    Post subject: volunteer experience Reply with quote

Just wondering..... Rolling Eyes

1. Does anyone know if hospital volunteer experience is required/recommended to be a successful applicant?
Has any of you been asked about volunteer experience
(in clinical setting) during your interview?

2. I read somewhere that GAMSAT is offered in September
in the US but ACER seems to state otherwise (March).
Who's right?

Your input will be greatly appreciated~! Laughing
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mia_g_
Veteran


Joined: 03 Jul 2007
Posts: 84
Location: Sydney

PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2007 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They don't use the gamsat in the US. They use it in the UK, and its on in March for Australia. I actually think in the Uk it might be on twice a year even.
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gammy2008
Veteran


Joined: 04 Aug 2007
Posts: 42

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gamsat UK is September from this year onwards (used to be January I think). Australia, Ireland and possibly NZ? are all in March.
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gemelos
Rookie


Joined: 11 Nov 2007
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 6:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys. But I'm planning to take GAMSAT in the US.
I read at ACER that they offer it in Washington D.C. but
not sure if they offer it at the same time as they do in Australia.
I'm planning on applying to U of Queensland and perhanps another
one.

Any of you know about [b]volunteer experience[/b] (clinical)
requirement ? I know thye require it here in the US but not sure
about what Aus. med schools expect from the applicants.

Please help~! Shocked
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p2409
Grizzled


Joined: 02 Mar 2007
Posts: 108
Location: Melbourne

PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2007 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

gemelos wrote:
Thanks guys. But I'm planning to take GAMSAT in the US.
I read at ACER that they offer it in Washington D.C. but
not sure if they offer it at the same time as they do in Australia.
I'm planning on applying to U of Queensland and perhanps another
one.

Any of you know about volunteer experience (clinical)
requirement ? I know thye require it here in the US but not sure
about what Aus. med schools expect from the applicants.

Please help~! Shocked


No gemelos, Australia uni's (like QLD) don't really structure their selection process around that US rich kid volunteer me-me-me bullshit. It's counter cultural in this country and the CV padding is spotted for what it is. If however you've got genuine volunteer experience (ie. not recent) it might help for the uni's that do old-fashioned interviews (as opposed to scenario based interviewing).
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Adrian
Moderator


Joined: 24 Apr 2007
Posts: 303
Location: Gold Coast, AUS

PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2007 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was asked what helped form my opinions of the medical field, and I told them that my time working as a nurse in a high-dependancy palliative setting gave me experience dealing with death and the families of those dying. I told them my views on medicine were different now to when I first wanted to become a doctor.
They seemed to lap it up. Though it isn't asked specifically, you can still weave your experience into the conversation with your panel.
Work or volunteer work in a clinical setting is definately not mandatory, but it helped me, and let's face it - any clinical experience will be useful to you once you're in medical school.
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p2409
Grizzled


Joined: 02 Mar 2007
Posts: 108
Location: Melbourne

PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2007 11:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Adrian that experience sounds really beneficial, but it wouldn't have mattered whether it was paid or volunteered work - your learnings would have been the same.

With regard to 'volunteering' per se, the system here is (thankfully) different to the States where your CV has to have all manner of extra-curricular volunteering features. Over there this often means 'I'm padding out my CV with volunteer work because I'm rich enough to not have to work full time to pay for this private course'. It is highly biased against people who are already disadvantaged because they struggle to get free non-earning time full stop.....my experiences working in the States left me with the feeling that, overall, volunteer stuff on a resume was generally a crock of shit done for the applicant's own personal reasons. The more of it on the CV, the richer and more advantaged the person was to begin with.

A long term ie. 4-5 years commitment was a different matter and more genuine, but you didn't see that often. Basically, if someone has to ask whether 'volunteer work is important for applications' you know straight off there doin it for their own reasons!
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bobbby
Rookie


Joined: 04 Oct 2007
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[what about wollongong uni, thats set up perfectly for portfolio stackers
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p2409
Grizzled


Joined: 02 Mar 2007
Posts: 108
Location: Melbourne

PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bobbby wrote:
[what about wollongong uni, thats set up perfectly for portfolio stackers


true bobby it's a portfolio for wollongong, but I've got more faith they'd cut through the bullshit volunteer stuff.

I'd like to hope a Paris Hilton lookalike who saved endangered macaws in Costa Rica for 6 months, while running a Fairtrade Coffee program for Starbucks wouldn't get a look in up there, whereas the rural person who'd done bits and pieces of stuff in their community over the years would come up trumps.
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preset
Rookie


Joined: 10 May 2008
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 9:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

grizzled....

while i completely agree that CV padding is a load of BS and the system here is structured far more in favour of economic equality...

i am a little offended that you would refer to volunteering as BS in general like that!
i spent time in africa volunteering because this is a genuine passion of mine. something i am really proud of and really changed my life and my whole perspective on life, i think it will make me a better doctor and is completely relevant.

while many people become doctors for the money, the prestige and the lifestyle some of us do it because we want to make a difference.
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Lovebite
Grizzled


Joined: 01 Apr 2008
Posts: 259
Location: Perth, WA

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think when he referred to volunteering as BS, he was more talking about the idea of starting volunteering a few weeks, or a month or two before an interview to look good.

There are volunteers and there are volunteers.

If you are committed to the concept of giving back, or sharing your skills of fortunes, then volunteering can truly be more about them than you....

But if you volunteer purely because you think an interview panel might think you to be of good nature, then.... well; what else do you call it. Its BS.
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brandywine
Rookie


Joined: 18 Mar 2008
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Volunteering is a interesting one.

I volunteer at Riding for the Disabled, because I like volunteering, I'm really good with kids and adults who have disabilities...... but mainly because I can play with placid ponies for free.

So would that make me a BS volunteer or a volunteer with a halo?
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Lovebite
Grizzled


Joined: 01 Apr 2008
Posts: 259
Location: Perth, WA

PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2008 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thats genuine volunteering.... not trying to appear like a volunteer to get into university.....

thats how I see it
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Adrian
Moderator


Joined: 24 Apr 2007
Posts: 303
Location: Gold Coast, AUS

PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 8:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think everyone's getting a little puritan in here. Volunteering for the sake of it is great because you're helping people or small organisations that may not have the resources to pay you.

Guess what? CV-filling-volunteers do exactly the same thing. I don't think it's 'BS' to volunteer in order to make yourself look better in front of the interview panel - it's bloody smart.
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macca_sti
Grizzled


Joined: 16 Jan 2007
Posts: 146
Location: Bris

PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 7:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was asked in the interview last year if I volunteered and I said no. They pretty much screwed thier nose up at that. Oh well I have done some this year. I am doing something I have wanted to do for years and at least I can say yes this time round and keep them happy.
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