We know that enrolling in a program and preparing for certification exams can present quite a challenge. It is important to understand your requirements and know who to contact for additional support. When it comes to gaining hands-on learning experience to complete your certificate, here are some things you should know:
1) Understand Your Clinical Requirements: You can find your program details and clinical requirements on our Student’s Resources page in our Career Center. Be sure to contact your Student Success Advisor and review what is required for your specific program and any other study materials you may need to complete your national certification exam.
2) Know Your Options & Do Your Research: Options for completing your clinical requirements outlined below.
- Searching for a clinical and applying for a job are two different things handled by different departments within an institution.
- Some organizations will hire you and you can complete your clinical requirements while on the job, so by all means apply for jobs but also keep looking for clinicals opportunities.
- Applications for jobs require strong resumes, cover letters, and a good networking strategy
- You are able to contact the institution directly for a clinical request. If you submit a job application, cover letter or resume will typically not be forwarded to another department, so it is best to contact more directly for necessary information.
- Keep in mind that larger organizations such as Hospitals and Health Systems will have a lot of requirements and it may take extensive time to obtain an affiliation agreement.
- You may also be required to obtain/produce: Background check, drug screen, vaccination records (including, but not limited to TB, Hep B, Flu and COVID), proof of health insurance, health screening etc. (contact Career Services if you have questions regarding resources for obtaining these),
- It is typically quicker to satisfy requirements for smaller places (Look at places that are not linked to larger Health Systems)
3) Establish a list of whom to contact: If you do not get the right person ask if the person you are speaking to could direct you to the correct department or individual.
- Make a list of places in your area to call. The more options you have the better chances you will have in a successful search.
- Network with family, friends, acquaintances etc. that may be in the medical field
- Your personal doctor (never hurts to ask)
- Labs such as Quest, LabCorp, One Blood, Grifols, etc. (These are large corporations but clinicals are often up to the individual site; some will allow clinicals, but many won’t)
- Doctor’s offices (Office Manager)
- Urgent Care Centers (Office Manager)
- Clinics (Office Manager)
- Labs in hospitals
- Lab director or manager *begin here, they may agree to take you and sometimes can direct you to the correct person for an affiliation agreement or next steps
- Education department (Most larger hospitals will have one and it is good place to start for the affiliation agreement information)
- Human Resources (Some HR departments may take care of the affiliation agreement)
4) Be confident in what you need to communicate to these contacts: Reaching out to the right professionals often requires a strong resume to back your requests and a display of both written and verbal communication to accurately get your points across. You are welcome and encouraged to reach out to your Career Coach for assistance with resume and cover letter development, interview preparation, and effective job search strategy tips.
- Make sure to pitch that you will get your full certification once the clinical requirements are met. If they say no, ask if they know of anyone who might be able to accommodate you.
- Below is an example script of the interaction between you and your clinical contacts:
“Hello, my name is _____________, I am a student at MedCerts am (currently in / have completed) the (name of program) program. I have (passed/will be taking) my national certification exam (on/by this date) and am seeking a clinical to complete the requirements for my full certification. My school can provide an affiliation agreement and certificate of liability insurance if needed. Do you know if (insert clinical site) can assist me in completing my clinical requirements (insert specific requirements) or would you be able to point me in the direction of someone that might provide me with more information to provide service to your organization?“
- Make sure to obtain the following information:
Contact phone number:*Do not forget to thank others for their time and consideration. Once you have obtained this information, you may connect with our Employer Relations Coordinators to assist you in your final activities needed for you to start your new career.
MedCerts is able to provide liability insurance and contractual agreements that are necessary for you to complete your clinical requirements so long as you provide the contact information to connect with the proper authorities at the clinical site you have identified.
While we cannot guarantee employment, our goal is to prepare you for a successful job search with skills you can use throughout your career. It is also important to remember that students are ultimately responsible for finding their clinical sites.
The MedCerts Career Services team is here to support and partner with you. We hope to assist you in securing your clinical site and are excited to see you succeed in the next steps of your career.
For more information, please visit our Career Center or locate additional resources listed in our Job Search Prep Course.