There are some who view volunteering as a waste of time — stupidity only for naive ‘softies.’ I flatly disagree. I volunteered at two hospitals for the last three years, and benefited much from doing it. I had a very meaningful, insight-producing experience that will affect me for years to come. I greatly benefited from working in these hospitals.

I learned about the hospital environment by treating patients and helping physicians do their jobs. I made many friends with hospital staff, and learned from their advice. I also obtained valuable connections for medical school by getting to know some hospital lab directors. This experience was invaluable, yet I was insulted and mocked for this simply because it was volunteer work. By the way, I could not do this work for money anyway because I would have had to go through graduate school for that. Money would have been a nice benefit, but I realized later that volunteering (especially to gain experience in a future career) is something everyone should try at least once their life.

Thinking that money is the cure-all for misery is an impoverished view of what it means to obtain happiness and fulfillment. Obviously there are other rational ways of achieving happiness that lie beyond obtaining wealth. One of them just so happens to be giving of one’s time and effort without expecting material reward.


~ by jsacc001 on March 22, 2008.

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