Scribing has become popular over the past 10 years as a way for pre-health students to gain clinical exposure. Discover unique insights on how to stand out amongst a sea of scribe applicants.
Aram Namavar is an Internal Medicine Resident Physician at UC San Diego Health. He is also the founder of White Coat Admissions Consulting, is a ProScribe partner, and has previously served on the medical school admissions committee as a reviewer at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine.
Among many other impressive career attributes, Aram assisted in determining who receives interview invitations after evaluating primary and secondary applications. He has transitioned out of that role and remains committed to helping students achieve their health professional school dreams.
Over the past couple of years, I have seen many students pursue scribe work in their gap year prior to matriculating into a health professional school (MD, DO, PA, NP, etc). While this is very important work for patient care, many students do not fully maximize their time on the job. The purpose of this article is to highlight characteristics that can aid current scribes in standing out on an application.
The Importance of Self-Awareness on Your Health Professional School Application
The first domain that scribes generally do not broadcast on their application, but should, is self-awareness. This is important clinical work you are doing and we need to see that you exhibit an openness to learning and growth. You should be able to discuss your strengths and limitations with coping skills and the broad implications for the community. You are inevitably going to witness difficult conversations being held with patients. In your description, take the opportunity to reflect and provide significant depth as to what you learned and how those tenets will impact your future career.
We typically use non-medical community service experiences to evaluate humanistic qualities in each applicant. In your description, you should demonstrate exceptional evidence of care and concern for others, without regard to self-benefit. You should be able to depict an ethic of care as part of the community while also viewing deficits and possible contingencies in the helping process. The aforementioned are intangible qualities that you learn on the job that is generally not detailed by scribe applicants to help them stand out.
Showcase Vertical Growth Within a Scribe Position to Stand Out
It is adequate to just participate as solely a medical scribe, and the qualities I suggested you highlight will allow you to be stronger than your counterparts. However, those that truly stand out as scribes commit to the position long-term and show vertical growth such as becoming a trainer of new hires, a scribe manager, etc. We also want you to clearly articulate insights from the leadership role you hold and develop your own leadership identity that you can discuss in an interview.
If you are to be promoted, you are likely to be a leader amongst your peers. One quality that I rarely see in applicants is leadership with groups other than peers with clear, demonstrated attention to process improvement, and effectiveness in leadership roles. As a future healthcare professional, leadership skills are necessary in order to transform care delivery. The interpersonal, organizational, and analytical skills you gain should be highlighted in your written materials and interviews.
I hope that this article was helpful in helping you identify how to grow in your role and stand out amongst a competitive applicant pool to health professional school. Additionally, these tips should provide you with more meaning in your current role. The ultimate goal is to positively impact patients and you play a pivotal part in that.
Looking to Gain Clinical Exposure? Consider ProScribe
As you weigh your options to gain clinical exposure, consider ProScribe. They have excellent opportunities for vertical growth once you have scribed for a minimum of six months. They promoted a total of 164 scribes to leadership positions last year. Possible leadership roles include National Implementation Trainer, Virtual Instructor, Virtual Trainer, Site Coordinator, Assistant Site Manager, Site Manager, Quality Coordinator, Client Service Manager, and more to distinguish you from your peers on professional school applications.