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Which Placement To Choose: Paid, Volunteer, Or Both?

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Hey guys! I'm applying for the Keenan summer research program at St. Michael's, and their application form asks for which type of placement I am looking for (paid, volunteer, or both).

 

As a first year with no research experience, which option would you recommend me to choose? I would definitely prefer a paid position (have to chip away at those student loans) but I'm worried that if I choose the "paid" option I'll have a lesser chance of getting in (due to lack of experience).

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Well can you afford to pay your tuition and rent if you aren't working full time in the summer? I would never ever be able to take a fully unpaid job as a student, but this may not be your situation. 

 

I'm not sure how someone else can answer this for you. Do YOU want a paid, volunteer, or either job???

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In my experience, this is up to the PI. It's best for you to apply to the program with a specific supervisor who is already willing to accept you as a summer student. The applications for the hospital programs (SickKids, Mount Sinai, St. Michael's, etc.) are just formalities for administrative purposes. I suggest emailing supervisors at St. Michael's directly and inform them of your intent to apply for this program and ask if they have funding to hire you as a paid student.

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I guess there are two issues raised with your thread. 

 

1. Would it be easier to get a position with St. Michael's if you chose volunteer over paid?
* Unfortunately I am not familiar with the program and cannot comment. Maybe someone else can.

 

2. Would a volunteer or paid research position look better on your application. 
* I would almost always say that paid experiences are generally better than volunteer. Although they are evaluated a little differently, the fact that you are good enough to be paid to do the job says a lot about your abilities and qualities. An example would be being paid for running a fundraiser. It is very very common to find a premed who is volunteering their time to organize a fundraiser. However, having a premed who is being paid to run a fundraiser is very unique and will look great on an application because it shows how skilled you are in that field. 

 

Thats just what I think. 

Cheer!

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If i'm correct with Keenan you just apply to supervisors directly first and then go through the program to get administration done. The supervisors need to provide funding. Just ask about research and see if they offer pay to you or not. 

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