Shadowing is an important part of your pre-health experience. Having the ability to observe a health professional in order to see what they really do on a day to day basis can be vital to the decision making process. Pursuing a career in health is a lifelong commitment, before you apply to your desired program you want to be sure of your choice. What better way to find out then by shadowing someone who is currently in the role you are interested in? Not only will you observe patient interactions and observe procedures but you will have 1:1 time with the provider to ask important questions like what is your greatest challenge? What do you love most about your career? What would you have done differently to get here? etc.
Not only is this integral for you to do for your own exploration, but many professional programs highly recommend and/or require shadowing hours. These hours will be logged on your application and reviewed by graduate schools.
The Health Professions Shadowing Program at Michigan Tech allows you to gain this meaningful experience with local hospitals and clinics in the Keweenaw area. The program is offered by semester in the fall, spring, and summer. We usually take 20-25 students per semester. While there is no guarantee of placement, we try our best to accommodate all student requests!
Students are able to request as many hours as they would like. However, students must shadow a minimum of 16 hours total in the semester to be part of the program.
Current Michigan Tech students can sign up for this program by completing the sign-up form sent out via the Pre-Health Email List. This will be followed by one required meeting.
Students that are second-year and above are able to sign-up, with 3rd and 4th year student requests prioritized.
In order to shadow, many locations will require students to complete a set of onboarding requirements. The requirements will vary depending on the location that you are shadowing at. Along with filling out hospital documents and completing any required trainings, students may also have to complete/show proof of the the below requirements:
- Updated Vaccinations: Frequently requested are MMR, TdaP, Hep B, Varicella, COVID-19, and Influenza
- Criminal Background Check
- Urine Drug Screen
- TB Testing (2- Step)
You will be notified of the requirements you need to complete upon clinical placement. You will work with the Director of Pre-Health to complete these by the required due dates.
It's easy to sign-up for the Health Professions Shadowing program. A sign-up sheet will be sent out two weeks prior to the start of each semester. Students will be notified of clinical placement around week 2 and will be required to attend the shadowing meeting scheduled the same week.
Students should complete their clinical onboarding requirements around week 4.
For questions on the Health Professions Shadowing Program, please contact our Director of Pre-Health Professions.
"My experience with the shadowing program at Michigan Tech was amazing. I was able to learn so much more about dentistry, which helped confirm my desire to go into this field. During my shadowing experience, I saw a variety of different procedures and was even able to assist a few times. Dr. Golba at Upper Great Lakes Family Health always explained the steps that he took during procedures, shared his experiences, and gave me advice concerning the application process. This experience provided me with the knowledge that I needed to confirm that being a dentist is the right career for me."
"Shadowing a pediatrician, and especially in a rural clinic setting, showed me just how big a role physicians can play in the lives of their patients. Even during one semester, there were patients I observed multiple times with Dr. Meyette at Upper Great Lakes Family Health, and if that was just during 4 months, I can only imagine how often he sees patients as they grow up, the connections they make as they mature, and how helpful the care he provides is to growing up healthy and safe. This definitely strengthened my decision to pursue medicine, because every time at the end of a visit when the kids would get to pick out stickers, and he was providing the parents with guidance and next steps, there was just something hearing how relieved the parents were, and how much more assured they were that their child was healthy, I think that's a pretty amazing thing to provide people. "