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Health Careers Opportunity Program

Shadowing Opportunities


Students are encouraged to contact physicians, PhD's, and other health care professionals directly to obtain shadowing experience during the Summer. HCOP and HPP can provide informaiton on clinical exposure and experience below. 

Shadowing Opportunities Form

When Pre-Professional advisors emphasize the importance of "clinical experience," they are refering to direct patient interaction and shadowing physicians/healthcare professionals. Health professional schools will expect to see clinical experiences reflected in your application, thus making clinical experience critical in your undergraduate career.


Direct Patient Interaction

When applying to medical schools, it is imperative that applicants clearly define experiences that provide them with direct patient interaction that demonstrate a commitment to patient care. This proves that you are comfortable working in a clinical setting and understand the realities of working in healthcare. 

Examples of direct patient interaction:

  • Volunteering in a hospital, community clinic, hospice care, emergency room, cancer center, veteran's administration, etc.
  • Working in clinical research where you are collecting information (consenting, health histories, etc.) from patients
  • Working as an EMT, CNA, medical assistant, scribe, or other similar clinical experience

To begin collecting experience in direct patient interaction, you will need to start by looking into opportunities around you. This can be at hospital volunteer offices, health care facilitiies, community clinics, and clinical research labs. Start your search early since it may take some time to receive a response.


Finding Shadowing Opportunities

In order to find an opportunity to shadow a physician or healthcare worker, it is vital you begin researching for areas that interst you or areas where you can inquire about shadowing.