You do not have to engage in research to go to medical school or other health profession schools. However, you may find beneficial to get some exposure to any type of research--bench, social science, qualitative, etc. Do not let the fact that you do not have prior experience deter you from pursuing research. Professors after all are looking for someone who is genuinely interested in their research and the science behind it, is reliable and able to learn quickly, and is enthusiastic about learning. Be sure to convey those characteristics in your resume, cover letter, e-mail, and interview when approaching these professors. If you need assistance with any of these endeavors, peruse the relevant resources on this website and, for further assistance, make an appointment in The Career Center.
Here are some tips for you:
- Start by looking for research positions in laboratories or with professors in the department of your major. The information you have learned within the courses in your concentration will lead to a better understanding of the work in the laboratory. In addition, if you decide that you would like to write an honors thesis to fulfill the Honors Program requirements, you will already be established in an appropriate laboratory.
- Contact a professor from a class. Read up on the professor’s research on their webpage and then go see them during their office hours. Express your interest in working with them if a position is available, and if no position is, ask for a reference to another professor in the same department or elsewhere, who may be hiring.
- Seek professors who are hiring undergraduate research students. Look on the websites of academic departments. Also, be sure to check the UM student employment website.
- Apply to a program that facilitates research experiences for undergraduate students.