By definition, an externship program is a temporary training program that takes place in an environment where you will work and is offered to students who are in a vocational training program.

Are you looking for tips, advice, and help for your first day of externship as a medical assistant technician? If so, you are in the right place.

Florida Career College is proud to offer all Medical Assistant Program students an externship in a local medical office. But, what does this mean for you?

This means that you will have the opportunity to gain real-world knowledge and hands-on experience in a setting that is conducive to where you will work in the future. Often, students who complete externships are hired by the facility where they complete it.

Being successful in your externship is vital and crucial to your future as a medical assistant. Below, we will cover the six things you need to remember on your first day of externship. If you can remember and implement these six things, you will be golden.


1. Always Listen to Those Who You Shadow

Remember, you are the newbie in this role. You never want to take on too much responsibility before you have been given the reigns to do so. What this means is that you should always ask for permission to do something before you do it.

Also, ALWAYS ask questions if you are unsure.

2. Patient Care and Safety is Paramount

One of the most important things to remember in the healthcare and medical field is that the patient’s care and safety is paramount. The purpose of the healthcare field is to protect patients, so as you can imagine, you need to make this a priority for yourself.

Everything you do should be done with the patient’s safety and care in mind. You have a high level of responsibility and you must maintain ethics and compliance. This also means that you must follow rules and not take it personally when other staff focus solely on the patient and the patient’s care at that moment.

3. Know Your Role BEFORE You Shadow Someone

It helps you to understand your role as a medical assistant technician. You must know your duties and what is expected of you. Once you do, you can successfully shadow someone and not have to worry about what the person is talking about or what a term means.

If you are not confident, study, study, study, and then complete your externship. Success is not earned if you head into an externship in a cancer facility and do not know what a sarcoma is.

4. Dress Professionally and NEVER Be Too Casual

You would not go into an interview in a tank top and jean shorts, so do not show up to your externship this way either. In general, most medical technicians where scrubs. These scrubs should fit well and be appropriate for the office setting you work in.

When it comes to personal hygiene, you want to make sure it is on the up and up. Women should have their hair pulled back and remove all jewelry and men should groom their beards and keep their hair neat and trimmed. 

5. Communication is Key

ALL medical fields need good communication. Without it, errors occur and can put a patient’s life at risk. You want to control the way you communicate too. This means you should be empathetic when you talk to patients and be clear and concise when talking to doctors and nurses.

6. Be Well Rested and Well Fed BEFORE Your Arrive in the Office

NEVER start out the day tired and hungry – you are setting yourself up for disaster. You should make sure you get a good night’s rest and eat a healthy breakfast. As a medical assistant technician, there may be times where you cannot stop exactly at noon to eat, so take care of yourself beforehand to ensure you can be as successful as possible.


Florida Career College offers you the opportunity to train and gain the hands-on skills you need to become a medical assistant. Our program is fun and tailored to meet your needs while preparing you to work in an entry-level role.

The medical assistant technician diploma program here at Florida Career College includes a 180-hour externship where you will work in a local medical office. To learn more about our program, do not hesitate to get in contact with one of our program advisors.