Exploring the various health professions is essential and can help confirm which path is most suitable for you based on your preferences, values, lifestyle, and aptitude. Oftentimes, students enter college determined to be a doctor, dentist, pharmacist, etc. However, many are unaware of the other health professions that might be of interest to them. Spend a considerable amount of time exploring the health professions prior to committing to one path. It is a long path so you want to make sure it is the right one for you!
Understand WHY you want to pursue a Health profession?
Use some of the resources below to aid in your pre-health exploration journey.
How do you know if a health career is right for you? Answer these questions to start exploring if this would be a good fit!
- Why health?
- What kind of healthcare do I want to provide?
- Who do I want to provide this healthcare to?
- How do I want to provide this healthcare?
- Where do I want to provide this healthcare?
- Do I have a strong scientific aptitude?
- What lifestyle do I envision?
- How long will it take?
- Am I competitive enough?
- Do I need additional training or education prior to applying?
- Return on investment: Debt accrual vs. salary
Explore Tools and Resources
For a more detailed look at the health professions, please visit: explorehealthcareers.org
Tips on Choosing a Health Profession
- Shadow a health professional you are interested in. This is the fastest way to determine if you want to commit to this path.
- Find a mentor in a health profession and conduct an informational interview.
- What made them choose this path?
- Had they considered other options?
- What is one thing they wish they knew prior to choosing this profession?
- Read and research various health professions.
- What are the challenges of this particular health profession?
- What characteristics does one need to have to be successful in this profession?
What is Allied Health?
The Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions (ASAHP) defines allied health professionals as the segment of the workforce that delivers services involving the identification,
evaluation and prevention of diseases and disorders; dietary and nutrition services; and rehabilitation and health systems management.
Allied health professionals include dental hygienists, diagnostic medical sonographers, dietitians, medical technologists,occupational therapists, physical therapists, radiographers, respiratory therapists, and speech language pathologists.
Allied health professionals comprise nearly 60% of the healthcare workforce.