Virtual Pre-Health Experiences: Shadowing, Community Service, Etc.

See below for a list of some of the many virtual experiences available during the pandemic! Whether you are looking to participate in community service, prepare for interviews, or gain shadowing experience, there are options available for you to fulfill those experiences! Please keep in mind that each applicant's experiences look different and that there is no right answer for how to fulfill these--we are simply providing you with a list of options to explore. 

"This course is a series of 5 videos in which you can watch over the shoulder of one of our physicians, nurse practitioners, or PAs as they go bedside in the ED to assess and diagnose a simulated patient.  The video is followed-up by a series of questions posed to the student and then a summary by the physician.  A short quiz on the topic addressed finalizes each class.  The first of the “e-shadowing” sessions is up and ready for your learning. The virtual shadowing videos are free and if so desired, after successfully completing all five modules with a 100% score, students can apply for a Certificate of Completion from the University of Colorado School of Medicine for a $50 fee (covering our costs of producing the videos).” 

Pre-health virtual shadowing videos. Different specialties and topics, weekly uploads.
Instagram: @virtualshadowing

"Interested in becoming a health professional? Did COVID throw you off track as you prepare to apply to professional school? Join us for virtual shadowing sessions. Pre-Health Shadowing can be completed from the comfort of your home. Meet with health care professionals from various domains and specialties to get an inside look at their education and career paths. Connect with our 4951 other pre-health students and professionals around the world. Get shadowing hours required for a strong application to thousands of Medical, Nursing, Dental, Pharmaceutical, PA, PT, and other health programs."
If you have any questions, please contact

Watch real patients describe their symptoms as a doctor leads you through the process of note-taking, testing, diagnosis, and treatment. This LIVE course is held via Zoom every Wednesday at 8 pm EST/5 pm PST and features interactive questions and answers to keep you engaged. 

Many Pre-Med Students were not able to achieve the clinical hours they hoped to gain due to the circumstances of COVID-19. As fellow Pre-Med students ourselves, we decided to create a virtual program to help them achieve these hours and learn from physicians of various specialties. We will post weekly schedules with who will be presenting, their specialty, and the time of the livestream. We will be having physician guests from a variety of specialties and backgrounds this semester, and we hope you join! 

“David Langer, MD, Chair of Neurosurgery at Lenox Hill Hospital and Vice President of Neurosurgery for Northwell Health's Western Region. He is a Professor of Neurosurgery and Radiology at the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. Dr. Langer is internationally recognized as an expert in cerebral revascularization and cerebral aneurysms. His work focuses on diseases of the brain vessels. Most recently, Dr. Langer is the star of the hit Netflix Docuseries, Lenox Hill.” (Webinar on 10/27. Registration link:

“‘We launched BRAINterns so we could offer students the physician shadowing experience through virtual webinars, academic seminars and take students virtually into the operating room to see live, neurosurgical procedures.’” *Summer internship program to gain shadowing experience. 

Earn shadowing hours and register for zoom sessions with healthcare professionals and receive a shadowing letter. 

“Each week, a PA from a different specialty is brought on as a “guest lecturer.” They go over what a day in their life is like as a PA and the most common conditions seen from initial complaint to workup to treatment. Additionally, they present a specific patient case(s) that they have encountered.” 

TeleShadowing is a free clinical e-shadowing platform open to all pre-health students from high school and beyond. As clinical shadowing opportunities have become limited in virtue of the ongoing pandemic, we are firm in our mission to extend shadowing opportunities to students across the globe. TeleShadowing intends to encourage and inspire students to explore the multifaceted world of medicine through our two-hour weekly Zoom sessions, in which they will have the opportunity to interact with health professionals as they walk them through real-life case studies and their path to medicine. Through our program, students will also be offered immediate certification of their hours for applications after having taken a quiz on the content prepared. 

Image from PAEA Website. 


Virtual Scribe Companies - Medical Scribes Training Institute
Virtual medical scribes remotely access the electronic health record and watch/listen to patient encounters through an audio/video device. This can be done in real time or after the physician sees the patient. There are technology and regulatory challenges when providing scribing remotely and these companies specialize in providing scribe services virtually. 


Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Contact Tracing Course: A free, six-hour Coursera class developed by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies is now available to train contact tracers about how to do this work effectively – and help cities and states across the nation undertake these critical efforts. 

Interview Prep:  
Focuses on tips for PA applicants doing virtual interviews and preparing for the interview process. 


“Explore hundreds of virtual volunteer opportunities in cause areas like health and medicine, education, and community building, that you can do from a computer, from home or anywhere.” 

"The Physiology Camp is a free and ongoing project that seeks to educate and expose students to the health sciences. Our mission is to provide career insight and support students who have an interest in the healthcare fields. We strive to create continuity with students over weeks, months, and years of attending the Physiology Camp... Undergraduate students can volunteer to be a TeleTutor for all ages", or, "teach a TeleCamp for the Elementary section." 

StudentSphere is a free, virtual mentorship program that pairs K-12 students with college students to assist families nationwide with the transition to online learning. College student volunteers assist with homework, tutoring, learning new skills, and also socialize with their mentee. The aim of this organization is to help alleviate the stress many parents are feeling as they have become the primary educators at home. Multilingual speakers are highly encouraged to apply. If you are interested in volunteering, please visit

“A nonprofit global network of social impact organizations, volunteers, learners, donors, and doers working since 2004 to build relationships and raise consciousness.” 

“As the largest not-for-profit exclusively for young people and social change, DoSomething’s millions of members represent every US area code and 131 countries. Using our digital platform, DoSomething members join our volunteer, social change, and civic action campaigns to make a real-world impact on the causes they care about.” 

“UPchieve is a free, online platform that connects low-income high school students in the US with live, volunteer coaches (that’s you!) any time they need it. Our volunteer experience was designed to be ultra-flexible because we believe it should be easy for awesome people like you to help students succeed. You can help students from anywhere with an internet connection: whether that be from your desk at work or from the comfort of your couch!” 

“Tutor children virtually with TeensGive. Our virtual volunteering options are a dream come true for our volunteers and their parents alike by removing the transportation component and opening up communities well beyond our local area and allowing direct interaction with people that need our help. Sessions are delivered via laptops and even phones and are all recorded to ensure quality and safety.” 

“School on Wheels volunteers provide free tutoring and mentoring to children from kindergarten through twelfth grade living in shelters, motels, vehicles, group foster homes, and the streets of Southern California.” *This program is not currently accepting applications for new volunteers. 

Become an online volunteer tutor for K-12 students with Learn To Be! 

 “Project Sunshine brings volunteer-led programming to pediatric patients and their families in a variety of medical settings… We provide family-centered opportunities for joy, connection, socialization, and memory-making.” Project Sunshine has remote volunteering opportunities for both individuals and companies. Individual volunteering opportunities include: TelePlay (small groups of patients and trained volunteers meet by video conference to engage in play and activities), telling a joke for a pediatric patient, sending a thank you message to a healthcare worker, sewing masks for pediatric patients or healthcare workers, and more. 

“The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme contributes to peace and development through volunteerism worldwide.” Volunteer positions available in a range of sectors including translation, writing/editing, technology development, COVID-19 response, teaching/training, and more! 

“DOROT is a nonprofit organization addressing the challenges of an aging population. We serve our clients with a diverse range of programs and services. We deliver those programs and services through intergenerational connections with volunteers of all ages. Volunteer remotely and make a difference in the lives of older adults! Make calls, send cards, connect over Zoom, and more!” 

“Contribute your skills and passions to help people with print disabilities read. From scanning and proofreading, to describing images, to providing support for Bookshare® teachers and families.” 

“Ark of Hope for Children is empowering advocated and donors to bring care and awareness to those victimized by human trafficking, child abuse, and bullying. Ark of Hope is a human rights umbrella organization using a trauma-informed approach to serve survivors through our various programs.” 

“The mission of Soldier’s Angels is to provide aid, comfort, and resources to the military, veterans, and their families. ‘Team Angel’ volunteers work virtually to support deployed, veterans, and military families by writing letters, sending care packages, baking, sewing, and more on a recurring basis. *These opportunities require a minimum donation of $1 per month.” 

“7 Cups connects you to caring listeners for free emotional support.” Volunteer as a listener: “Getting started as an active listener is easy and rewarding in many ways. You’re in complete control over your displayed availability, so you can listen as often as you like.” 

“Be My Eyes is a free app that connects blind and low-vision people with sighted volunteers and company representatives for virtual assistance through a live video call.” 

The Zooniverse is the world’s largest and most popular platform for people-powered research. This research is made possible by volunteers — more than a million people around the world who come together to assist professional researchers. Our goal is to enable research that would not be possible, or practical, otherwise. Zooniverse research results in new discoveries, datasets useful to the wider research community, and many publications.” 

"LibriVox volunteers read and record chapters of books in the public domain (books no longer under copyright) in the USA*, and make them available for free on the internet. Practically, this means we record books published 95 full years ago or longer. All our recordings (including yours, if you volunteer for us) are also donated into the public domain.” 

“Warm Up America! is working with Saber Healthcare Group® to provide lap blankets and shawls to the seniors they serve in their facilities. Saber Healthcare Group® cares for over 9,000 seniors in 117 communities spanning seven states. Any size shawls are acceptable and the suggested size for lap blankets is 35" by 45".”

“Become a Smithsonian Digital Volunteer and help us make historical documents and biodiversity data more accessible. 

“The Chemo Angels program offers support to those who find themselves in the most challenging situation of their lives – battling a cancer diagnosis and undergoing IV chemotherapy or intensive immunotherapy treatment. Our volunteers support their “buddy” throughout their journey with cards, uplifting messages, supportive words, and lots of positive energy. The encouragement our Angels provide helps give patients the comfort and confidence of knowing they are not alone in their fight.” 

“The Granny Cloud is an independent team of volunteers that reaches out to children with limited educational resources around the globe, in a variety of settings, and provides them with the opportunity to experience worlds far removed from their own. The idea was initiated by Sugata Mitra and is connected to the SOLE approach to learning (self-organized learning environment). It has been led and nurtured since its inception by Suneeta Kulkarni.” 

“Want to help shape the future of the National Park Service’s digital presence? Assist the NPS web team with the testing and evaluation of web products. Your feedback will be used to enhance and improve the online offerings of the National Park Service.” *There are no volunteer positions currently available with this organization. 

“Right Here At Home is a 501(c)3 organization.  Our mission is to eliminate poverty by using technology to educate people in poverty.” 

“Paper Airplanes is a nonprofit organization registered in the USA that matches conflict-affected individuals with personal tutors for 12-16 week sessions conducted via Skype and other video conferencing platforms. We have five programs, all formed in response to student demand.”

“Digital Volunteers" can now take on important assignments to expand access to the Smithsonian's massive collections and can participate in a variety of research programs. Some roles require special knowledge or skill, but many do not.” 

“Welcome to our Citizen Archivist program. You can contribute to the National Archives Catalog by tagging, transcribing, and adding comments to our records, making them more accessible and searchable. Join us! Every contribution you make helps unlock history.” 

“Wikimedia projects are made by volunteers. Editors contribute new articles and improve current articles. Developers write and debug the code that makes the wikis go. Galleries, libraries, archives, and museums share their collections and expertise.” Volunteer as an editor, tech developer, and/or join an edit-a-thon! 

“Missing Maps is an open, collaborative project in which you can help to map areas where humanitarian organizations are trying to meet the needs of vulnerable people.”