Becoming a pediatrician or finding a good one

My son’s girlfriend wants to be a pediatrician. She is graduating from high school next month. What kind of advice would you offer her?

Your son’s friend has quite a few more years ahead of her, including college, medical school and pediatric residency training. Nevertheless, I feel this is one of the world’s best job and I would encourage her to stick with her goal. She should go to the best college she can, and study something that she loves. A group of core premedical courses is required for medical school entry, but by no means is a science major required. Pediatricians-to-be should involve themselves in co-curricular activities that they enjoy and that demonstrate their interest in a helping profession. Seeking opportunities to shadow a physician or volunteering in a hospital are great ways to decide if medicine really is for you.

Pediatricians enjoy children and their families, but even within pediatrics they do many different things. Some pediatricians work in intensive care units, others in emergency departments and many more are in busy practices in communities. Some of them teach, write, do research, help develop policy that affects children – and some are saving the lives of very sick children almost every day! The best part of the job is that it can suit a variety of people, all of them committed to improve the lives of children and their families.

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