The most valuable experience this year has been teaching for the Medical Scholars Program (MSP) at UCSF. MSP is a program consisting of 16 MS2's who run 30 minute review sessions of anatomy, cardiovascular, respiratory, and renal material to the MS1's from September through February 2008.
Since the MS1's are currently applying for MSP, this is a great opportunity for me to list reasons to apply for MSP:
1) MSP gives you lots of practice about how to communicate lessons in different ways (visual, audio, kinetic) to your peers
2) You learn how to answer questions or handle questions that you don't know the answer to (very very valuable on wards I would imagine with both patients and attendings)
3) MSP is a lot of fun and the people are really energetic
4) There's a great MSP tradition and you feel like you're part of something special :)
5) GREAT review for boards, you relearn important things, the best preparation is teaching and everything you do actually helps you in the end
6) you earn a small stipend for being an MSP leader
The only drawback is that MSP does take up a lot of time (especially preparation) depending on the type of person you are. Some people take a few hours, while some people take days preparing. It was a little frustrating in the fall, because i was studying for I3, prologue, and taking a grad class in biostatistics at the same time, so it was like 2/3 of my studying wasn't even going towards "medical school." I did feel sometimes like i was studying for first year all over again but now the reviews are a lot less painful so i think it was worth it.
What do MSP coordinators look for? They want enthusiasm and great communicators. :)