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kawatson

Worth taking CNA course next month before reapplying?

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Last cycle I applied to 6 schools, received one interview at Baylor, and wound up #8 on the waitlist...since it doesn't seem like I'll be moving up that list any further I will need to reapply.

In evaluating my app, I think maybe my lack of HCE is my biggest deficit.

 

Quick stats:

GPA 3.89

Science 3.9

Post-bac 4.0

GRE 159Q 159V 4.0W

 

Job - Shriners Burns Hospital research coordinator

HCE - previously a scribe (if that counts?) and performed HIV testing and H. pylori testing in the ED, volunteer in two physical therapy departments

Shadowing - 20hrs county clinic, will have 20hrs ENT and more hours with the PAs here at Shriners (20 or so?) within the next month

REQs - Chief of burn surgery, Chief of research (my boss), MD I work closely with daily. (This time around I will swap out one of these for a PA)

 

I am obviously lacking TRUE hands on healthcare experience. I signed up for a CNA course, but unfortunately the only option was April-May 2016, right when I need to reapply. I won't have time to work as a CNA before applying (nor do I plan on giving up a full time job for a part-time CNA job, which is all that is currently posted anywhere nearby)...so is it worth it? I thought maybe it would be good to get at least the clinical hours required for certification and the experience of it all.

 

I would appreciate thoughts on whether this will boost my application at all, help me in the long run, or make any kind of difference at all?

 

 

Thanks!

 

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If you aren't actually planning on working as a CNA, why bother?  Just having the cert isn't going to help you if you never get HCE from it.  Don't waste your time or money.

 

Your grades are great - how many hours of HCE do you have as a scribe?  There are plenty of scribes in my program so it's not bad HCE necessarily (at least, it's not prohibitive).  Just make sure you apply to schools where it is listed as acceptable to ensure that it will count and keep you in the game compared to other applicants.

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No. A certification/license with no experience behind it is worthless.

 

Apply to private owned/franchised outpatient clinics and tailor your resume to fit the job description. HIV testing? That's counseling patients and phlebotomy. 

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I never thought to word the HIV testing job I had that way...it sounds much better! Thanks!

 

You have to learn how to sell yourself! 

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Your grades and test scores are great, but the problem is that schools would want to know how have you improved your application from last year. Therefore, you must have some direct patient care experience unless the schools that you apply to consider scribe as direct patient care experience (which some schools do).

 

However, if you take the CNA class, which ends in May and you get a part-time job as CNA by the end of May or beginning of June, you can list it as ongoing direct patient care experience on CASPA and most schools would consider that. Therefore, it is worth taking the course if you plan on working on those hours. If not, then there is no point.  Good Luck!

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No. A certification/license with no experience behind it is worthless.

 

Apply to private owned/franchised outpatient clinics and tailor your resume to fit the job description. HIV testing? That's counseling patients and phlebotomy. 

 

It's only counseling/phlebotomy if the OP actually draws the blood and discusses results with the patient (highly unlikely).  

 

There's selling yourself and then there's stretching the truth.  A person who draws/runs an HIV test is NOT counseling.  Sorry.

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For whatever reason my browser won't let me quote, but I am aware that this isn't counseling.

 

I did do hundreds of finger pricks, occasionally drew additional blood for positive rapid tests (I only personally drew maybe 10-15 positives in my year there), and educated patients on safe sex/clean needle use/regular testing. I did not counsel, but I did observe and stand in on doctors who counseled those with positive results...so I just need to word this correctly without stretching the truth.

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It's only counseling/phlebotomy if the OP actually draws the blood and discusses results with the patient (highly unlikely). 

 

There's selling yourself and then there's stretching the truth.  A person who draws/runs an HIV test is NOT counseling. Sorry.

I stand corrected

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I'm wondering why you have waited until the very last minute before thinking about getting HCE. You had a whole year and now it's too late. A wasted opportunity. I understand you were on a wait list, but any reasonable person would have been preparing for next year's application just in case. In my opinion, you should get the certification and start working. I wish you luck. The rest of the stats you posted look good.

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Many schools have HCE requirements that must be met before matriculation (not application). Other schools don't have HCE requirements at all. Apply more broadly this time and work on your interview skills.

 

I would seriously consider taking the CNA course and then trying to find a CNA job. If you get into a school that wants those hours (or worse -- if you don't get in at all), then that will have been well spent.

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I'm wondering why you have waited until the very last minute before thinking about getting HCE. You had a whole year and now it's too late. A wasted opportunity. I understand you were on a wait list, but any reasonable person would have been preparing for next year's application just in case. In my opinion, you should get the certification and start working. I wish you luck. The rest of the stats you posted look good.

I didn't wait - I live on an island with only one community college. The only course they offer is in the spring :/ I literally signed up for it by contacting the prof last August after realizing maybe I hadn't done enough. I didn't find out about my waitlist status until February since Baylor is a school that waits until January to interview...so that left me with even less time to figure out what to do.

 

I also only applied (and will only be applying) to schools that claim to have no min HCE required.

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