What Types of Skills Are Best for a Health and Medicine Major?

If spending all day deep in the world of science and getting to help people along the way sounds like the perfect career to you, majoring in something health- or medicine-related may be the right fit. But before you officially dive into that world, here are 5 important skill sets that successful health and medicine majors have.

Science and quantitative skills

It goes without saying, but health and medicine majors need to have serious science and quantitative chops to work in their fields. Most of your classes will be related to science (and sometimes math), so if you feel that these are strongest subject areas, you could definitely keep up with the rigor that comes with health and medicine majors.

Interpersonal skills

Regardless of what part of the health or medical field you end up going into, you’ll be working with patients and other healthcare professionals constantly, and being able to be calm and helpful at all times is an important skill.

You’ll have to show this same level of dedication to working and getting along with others during your health and medicine studies, both in the classroom and on the ground if your major requires you to work at a clinic, hospital or other facility that provides health care.

Attention to detail

Medicine is a detail-oriented field, so health and medicine majors are meticulous when it comes every part of the process. From filling out paperwork to working with real patients, you’ll need to make sure your T’s are crossed and I’s are dotted every step of the way if you want to be successful in college and beyond.

Problem-solving skills

At the end of the day, health and medicine are about solving the numerous issues that others deal with, and often you’ll have to think of creative and unique solutions to help. Health and medicine majors are people who are excited by taking on new challenges and finding interesting ways the conquer those challenges.

Ability to work well under pressure

Whether it’s taking difficult exams or trying to diagnose a patient, health and medicine majors are constantly being pushed to their limits to find answers quickly. If you like the feeling of working at a fast pace and handle pressure well, you won’t be phased by whatever comes your way throughout your college years.


Next, get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as Mastering Your Summer Internship and find answers to common interview questions such as Why Do You Want to Work Here?.


Types of Internships for Health and Medicine Majors

Pursuing a health and medicine major is a great way to develop your knowledge of the healthcare industry and learn the skills you’ll need to succeed in the field. The best way to put those skills and knowledge to use is by taking on an internship in a healthcare-related field and figure out what career path really fits your interests. From a healthcare-focused education internship to an internship at a public policy organization, there are a lot of options you can explore to determine what works best for you.

Some of the most common internships for health and medicine majors include:

Clinical lab intern

As a clinical lab intern, you’ll work at a lab where you’ll be involved in a number of administrative and research-related tasks. It’s a great opportunity to keep up with the latest research trends and methodologies while learning how to test, analyze and discuss your results with the world at large.

Pre-med summer intern

Another great option is to apply for pre-med summer internship programs in hospitals and universities. This can be especially helpful if you’re a pre-med student who is interested in going to medical school since it’s the perfect opportunity to get a handle on the medical environment and the responsibilities that come along with it. This type of internship involves hands-on experience with the functioning of different departments as well as the potential to shadow a doctor in their everyday duties.

Policy intern

If your passion for healthcare extends to facilitating change through healthcare and mental health policies, a policy or advocacy internship with a prominent healthcare organization could be a great choice. From keeping up with legislative changes to attending conferences and drafting and researching topics related to specific healthcare policies, you’ll get hands-on experience into the procedures required to facilitate policy reform.

Education intern

If you’re looking to put your healthcare major to use in an educational setting, interning at a school, a university or an ed-tech company can give you the exposure you need. In this role, you could be coordinating training programs in a school or writing content for adaptive learning apps. This type of internship will give you hands-on experience with the learning methods and technologies you’ll need to make learning interesting and engaging to students.

Nonprofit intern

If you’re interested in working in the nonprofit sector, you might consider interning at a nonprofit healthcare organization, a role that can offer you a great all-around experience while also giving you a sense of what it takes to fund and sustain such an organization. Whether you’re assisting with grant writing, organizing training sessions or coordinating outreach programs, you’ll get a broad range of experience in the healthcare field and beyond.

Healthcare administration intern

As an administrative intern in a healthcare setting, you’ll gain familiarity with the operations of a hospital or a healthcare organization. You might be assigned to a specific department or gain experience across multiple departments in areas such as data gathering and report writing.

Whether you’re on your way to medical school or looking to branch out into a healthcare-related occupation that does not directly focus medical care, an internship will give you the hands-on experience you need to develop your skills and find out what type of career is right for you.

Next, learn more about this college major such as What Types of Skills Are Best for a Health and Medicine Major? and get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as the Top 10 Skills Employers Want in an Intern.

Types of Entry-Level Jobs for Health and Medicine Majors

A health and medicine major is a great opportunity to learn about the many different aspects of the healthcare industry while also developing the skills that will make you marketable in the field. And because knowledge of health and medicine is in demand even beyond the healthcare industry, you’ll have your pick of entry-level jobs.

Some of the most popular types of entry-level jobs for health and medicine majors include:

Health educator

As a health educator, you’ll brief people on behaviors that prevent diseases and promote wellbeing. From assisting with the development of health education programs to analyzing data, identifying the needs of a particular community and designing and implementing programs to increase awareness of existing healthcare policies, this role will give you the opportunity to educate people on maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Registered nurse

As a registered nurse, you’ll work directly with physicians to assist with patient care and treatment. In this hands-on role, you’ll be responsible for everything from drawing blood for lab tests to administering medications and ensuring that patient records are accurate and up to date.

Assistant researcher

Healthcare research is always relevant and because of changing research methods, it’s a constantly-evolving field. If you decide to become a research assistant, you could work at a university, a healthcare organization, for a pharmaceutical company or even a nonprofit.

Physician assistant

A job as a physician assistant gives you training and insight into medicine-based professions. In this role, you’ll record patient histories, assist physicians in various capacities, prepare blood samples and enter patient information.

Medical transcriptionist

As a medical transcriptionist, you’ll transcribe medical records that are reported by physicians or other healthcare professionals. You’ll also develop relevant knowledge of medicine and medical terms. It’s an entry-level job that can prepare you for medical school or other healthcare-related opportunities.

Massage therapist

A certified massage therapist treats clients using massage modalities designed to relieve pain due to injury or stress. In this role, you’ll be responsible for helping clients achieve an overall sense of wellbeing and you’ll be able to work in a variety of settings including spas, clinics, at a physician’s office or a fitness center.

Occupational therapy assistant

For health and medicine majors looking to become occupational therapists, a good place to start out is as an occupational therapy assistant. In this position, you’ll provide therapy to patients and support therapists as they help those patients develop the skills required for daily functioning.

Dental assistant

As a dental assistant, you’ll assist dentists with dental procedures such as cleanings, X-rays and oral surgery. You’ll also contribute to the efficiency of the clinic and its procedures, and help patients feel at ease throughout the duration of their appointment.

School counselor

As a school counselor, you’ll help students navigate various challenges while also guiding them through their personal and social development. As a middle school counselor, you may offer academic guidance on which subjects to study while as a high school counselor you’ll be responsible for helping students apply to college.

Social worker

Social workers specializing in psychiatric treatment and mental health are often employed by nonprofits and hospitals. In this role, you’ll be responsible for assisting patients and their families with rehabilitation, helping them refine their interpersonal dynamics and work on achieving personal goals.

A health and medicine major is a wonderful way to build your skills and it can open the doors to a variety of entry-level opportunities. For those who are interested in going to medical school, these opportunities can also give you a sense of what a career in medicine truly entails.

Next, learn more about this college major such as What Types of Skills Are Best for a Health and Medicine Major? and get more career tips for internships and entry-level jobs such as the Top 10 Things You Should Look For In An Internship.