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Question I would like to see answered

Has anybody ever volunteered to work at an office for free,maybe under the guise of extending the externship training? I'm not talking about where you did your externship,but another office that you approached and asked if you could be "hired in" for a few months,without pay,in order to get more experience,not to mention your foot in the door. I have seen this suggestion before but have not tried it yet. I guess my real question is,what would be a good reason for a site manager to say "No thanks"?

Are You Working? No

Re: Question I would like to see answered

You possibly could be hurting another MA's chance of being hired at that office by offering your services "for free". If you have a positive attitude about yourself and your training you should not have to work "for free". This is only my opinion and please don't get angry at me. Voluteering is a wonderful suggestion but please do it after you have landed your "real" job and in some other manner. I, as a site manager, would see you wanting to voluteer your time as being "unsure of yourself" ,"a weekness". Again this is only my opinion

Your Professional Title/Credentials: Laid off from Sony Electronics.

Are You Still In School? Just starting in the fall.

Are You Working? no

Re: Question I would like to see answered

Are there any free clinics in your area? That would be a great place to get experience and is all volunteer work.

Your Professional Title/Credentials: RMA/ CNA/ SN

Are You Still In School? yes

Are You Working? yes

Re: Question I would like to see answered

What about all the lousy MAs,or the the ones who have been doing it for years and still don't know what URI means,or how to read a dipstick UA accurately,or to get the TB injection to ever wheal up,and yet they have a job? Aren't they taking away work from someone who could be very good if only they would be given a chance? In some areas of the country it isn't that easy to find something. The sites either don't advertise or they specify a lot of experience. You can either feel a lot of frustration (like at the school for not helping you),depression which leads to giving up in order to ease those bad feelings,or you can think about other ways of approaching a would-be employer. Some offices are so busy that I would think they would welcome having someone who knows what they are doing to help out,and they don't have to put them on the payroll. But maybe I am wrong?
As for a free clinic-I have never contacted them but would not be surprised if they prefer nurses(like the local prison farm does).
Not trying to scare anybody off but if you are in school now or will be soon,don't fall for the "Medical Assisting is the fastest growing field!" line that they will be telling you. It gives the false impression that maybe you won't have any trouble finding something. Accept it now and vow to get all the help you can to secure a position once the time comes.

Your Professional Title/Credentials: RMA

Are You Still In School? Not since December

Are You Working? Not since March

Re: Question I would like to see answered

I am in favor of the volunteer experience. I don't see where it would hurt other MAs. Volunteers are just as serious, if not more so, as those on a pay roll. And if the terms and duration are clearly spelled out, then this volunteer job would eventually end and MAKE ROOM for a hired position if the medical office supervisor recognizes the value of additional help.

In the meantime the volunteer will have gained not only the invaluable experience and skills, but another high quality reference to add to the resumee.

So, therefore, I encourage it!

Your Professional Title/Credentials: Web Site Owner/Site Admin

Re: Question I would like to see answered

There are many other things you could volunteer for as an MA and still have a paying job. When I first started out I worked in an office for pay and then a couple weekends in the summer I would help out on camping trips for TBI patients. I administered medication and helped with first aid when needed. Plus I got to meet some really interesting people and have fun. It looks great on my resume also!

Re: Question I would like to see answered

Yes, I think it is good idea to volunteer to get some well needed experience and let me explain why. I am a lpn and supervisor that reviews medical assistant resumes. Let me tell you what an employeer is looking for when we look at your resume. we look for experience.... I don't care how you got it...paid or worked for free. You must remember that when an employer looks at your resume they are asking themselves "what can this ma do for our company". The more experience you have in different fields (family practice, gyn, cardiology etc) the more money you can command. Sometimes you just have to 'suck it up' and do it for free in order to get that well needed experience, but believe me you will be compansated for it later. I was a ma before I went back for the lpn program and I can tell you that as a ma I always got wages I asked for because of my experience. I also am impressed by ma's that take it upon themselves to get new skills and knowledge like taking a basic xray certification course, and their resume will not get tossed to the trash like the others.

Remember that there are literally hundreds of ma's applying for the same job that you have to make your resume stand out from the rest. The more skills and knowledge you have will greatly increase the odds of a manager calling you back for an interview.
I also do not consider clinicals in school as experience. I like to see on a resume 'real' office experience. And to answer your question, yes, I worked for free as a young ma...the experience I gained was very valuable.
I hoped this info helped.
(ps-you never know...your resume may end up on my desk someday
l.lopez lpn

Your Professional Title/Credentials: LPN

Are You Still In School? no

Are You Working? no