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Bearcat2310

How heavily weighted are volunteer hours for PA school acceptances?

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I've received mixed responses from people I've talked to in the past so I figured I'd ask the PA community on here. How heavily weighted do you think volunteer hours are in an "accepted" PA school application. I know many schools don't exactly require them but it seems as if most accepted or competitive students have several hundreds/thousands of hours. If you believe they are weighted significantly what would be the approximate number?

 

Thanks in advanced for your help!

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If you had to choose between volunteering or getting more PCE/improving your GPA, volunteering is definitely not the priority. That being said, with so many applicants and this profession growing so quickly, I'd say you should get at least 50 hours of volunteering. This is purely my two sense, but I believe having some volunteering is very helpful.  Having several hundred or several thousand is not necessary. You are better off picking up extra shifts at a PCE job if possible, something that is far more valuable. Some people get accepted with none. I just got accepted with 120 hours of volunteering. I guess long answer short, get like 50-100, but don't worry about having hundreds of hours unless the school explicitly states most students that matriculate have an average of blah hours.

Edited by SonofSig

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I had 1200 volunteer hours when I applied this year for the first time. I have one acceptance, three more interviews, and no rejections yet. But, 1100 of those hours doubled as patient hours where I was a scribe. I had 1700 hours of PCE.

It would be helpful to look at the mission statements and goals of your top programs. The schools I've head back from have missions focused on aspects of providing healthcare in rural, urban, underserved, and cultural diverse communities. Volunteering in these areas specifically show a level of altruism in your application and can make you come off as a more well-rounded applicant. A few hours a week over a consistent period of time show that you aren't checking a box. But, without a decent GPA, GRE, healthcare experience, shadowing, LORs and things, you won't even be considered an applicant.

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