My Health Care Experience Hours for PA School
For the PA Program, most of my healthcare experience hours came from working as a kinesiologist after graduating. I worked at 2 physiotherapy clinics and the common responsibilities included setting up patients with treatment modalities. ultrasound, tens IFC, and teaching them exercises.
At one clinic, particularly the gym was my office. So, I worked with multiple patients, but I had to make sure their form was good and then, once those exercises became easier for them I had to progress patients to harder or more challenging exercises. And that was really rewarding, to see them go through the recovery process. That’s where I got most of my hours from.
Aside from that, I used my high school experiences as well as some other voluntary experiences I did throughout Undergrad.
In the summer I started off volunteering at a family health clinic close to home. And then the next summer I got hired at the same place to work as a medical assistant to complete patient profiles. I completed a lot of patient profiles and there was a lot of communication required as some of these patients were ESL. English was their second language and I would have to find alternate modes of communication.That challenged me in a different aspect.
And then there was a walk-in clinic close to university where I did about four to eight hours weekly. Again, it was a different population. It was closer to the rural areas of London in downtown area.
How I found my Kinesiology Position
Well, Kinesiology was an interesting story. After graduating, I couldn’t find a job for two months. I actually took the “Explore Program” after my fourth year and I applied before I went and even throughout the five weeks I was at the explorer program. I didn’t hear back. And Kin is a very competitive, get because volunteers could do some of those duties, sometimes people prefer to hire volunteers.
It was actually, July, a few months after I graduated, during a tennis match where I played against my boss’s husband and he overheard me saying that I did my degree in Kinesiology and that I was looking for a job and he’s like, “hey, my wife’s looking to hire!”. So I submitted my resume and then went in for an interview and it was quite far from home and it was an Orangeville and I was in Brampton. So, I had to get a car and get used to it. But that’s how you start.
How I found by job as a Clerical and Clinical Assistant Position
There was a walk-in clinic I worked at close to the university and another clinic I worked at throughout the summer, which was actually my mom’s family doc (not mine) at that time.
I was visiting the clinic with my mom and shared what I did my studies in.. and asked “Are there any opportunities? “ To find Pre-PA Health Care Experience, use your network try to advocate for yourself and say, “his is what my background is, and this is how I can help your clinic”.
Sometimes you have to start off as a volunteer and prove your skills and prove yourself before you get hired or find better opportunities. And as a student it’s probably best if you can get hired, especially with finances.
How Pre-PAs can Diversify their Health Care Experience Hours
That’s a common question I get from Pre-PAs, they often ask “what should I do my health care experience in to make my application stand out?“
The main tip I would give in terms of getting healthcare experiences: There’s no right way, there’s no right magic recipe per se.
Just do what interests you and if you do what interests you, you’ll shine in that field.
And the passion shows when you speak about it at interviews. in our class particularly, we have people from a variety of backgrounds.
At UofT you require 910 hours of patient care experience. We have people who are paramedics for 23 years, and PA students who were also former sleep technicians, physiotherapists, medical assistants and nurses who chose PA over a nurse practitioners.
Everyone has a different story and everyone’s choice of entering PA school was based on their healthcare experience or at least it played a role in it.