*Information for Pre-Nursing/Nursing students is available here. The information below is for students preparing for other fields in the health professions.*
Pre-Health Shadowing/Volunteering and Ways to Continue to Build A Competitive Profile in the Midst of COVID-19:
A list of ways that pre-health students can make the most of their time during COVID-19 can be found here. In addition, more information about clinical volunteering can be found by scrolling down this page. This is a time of uncertainty and disruption for everyone, and health professional schools are well aware of the implications the current pandemic will have on pre-health students. They will not hold this time against you as it is outside of your control. Try not to stress about the “lost time” shadowing/volunteering in physical capacities and focus on the ways you can be an active, helpful member of your home community.
For all health professional schools, clinical volunteering is a must. Admission committees want to know that you are truly dedicated to the health professional field, and a way that you demonstrate that interest is through volunteering. Community volunteering is certainly a welcome addition to your application, just make sure that you also volunteer in a clinical setting, whether that be a hospital, clinic, hospice, etc.
- There is not a set number of volunteer hours required before applying to most health professional schools. Admission committees want to know that you are dedicated to your volunteering, so do not feel the need to collect a few hours in many areas, but rather show dedication to the places you do decide to volunteer.
- Above all, keep in mind that volunteering, along with shadowing, is meant to help you decide whether the career track you have embarked upon is indeed one that is of interest to you. If during the volunteer and shadowing process you decide that you are not passionate about what you are doing, then consider other health professional careers that might interest you. Your career should be something you are passionate about and interested in, so do not stick with something you do not enjoy!
How do I find Volunteering opportunities?
Finding opportunities can be extremely challenging due to restrictive policies and procedures of hospitals and clinics. Please continue to look for experiences throughout Tampa Bay, including private practices. However, some suggestions are below:
- Memorial Hospital Volunteering
- BayCare Hospital Volunteering (multiple hospitals!)
- Shriners Hospital Volunteering
- All Children’s Hospital Volunteering
- Tampa General Hospital Volunteering
- Advent Health Tampa Volunteering
- Haley Veteran’s Hospital Volunteering
- Brandon Regional Hospital Volunteering
- Northside Hospital Volunteering
- Morton Plant Hospital Volunteering
- South Bay Hospital Volunteering
- Medical Center of Trinity Volunteering
- Oak Hill Hospital Volunteering
- Lakeland Regional Health Volunteering
- Moffitt Cancer Center Volunteering
- Children's Cancer Center
- Florida Cancer Specialists
- Hope Lodge Volunteer
Clinics (some include Dental opportunities):
- Bridge Healthcare Clinic
- Judeo Christian Health Clinic
- St. Petersburg Free Clinic
- Suncoast Community Health Centers
- Crescent Community Clinic
- Outreach Clinic Brandon
- Free Clinic of Tampa Bay
- Seasons Hospice & Palliative Care of Hillsborough County
- Chapters Health System Hospice Volunteers
- Suncoast Hospice Volunteering
- USF Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute
- Ronald McDonald House Charities of Tampa Bay
- Camp Boggy Creek (camp for children with serious illnesses)
For Pre-Vet Students:
- BigCat Rescue
- Humane Society Tampa Bay
- Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium
- SPCA Tampa Bay
- Zoo Tampa at Lowry Park
How do I prove my shadowing experiences when I apply to health profession programs?
Unlike volunteering in high school, there is NO official paperwork that is required for proving shadowing experiences. Therefore, it is important that you keep track of your volunteer experiences for yourself. We recommend that you review our Tracking Activities tab on our website to review all possible ways to keep track of these experiences.