Each student is unique and the manner in which you choose and plan for a career in the health professions is highly individualistic. You should use your undergraduate years to explore new areas of interest and then to focus on the area that is the most exciting to you.

Use this time to:

  • Develop effective study skills and hone your problem solving and analytical skills
  • Identify your strengths and address weaknesses
  • Create experiences that require conceptual and integrative thinking, and
  • Discover who you are.

Exploring Medicine

Some of you who arrive at Duke planning to become physicians will change your minds and become poets, philosophers, historians, scientists, engineers, attorneys, political scientists, or artists. Others of you who come to Duke with thoughts of becoming artists, political scientists, attorneys, engineers, scientists, historians, philosophers, or poets will instead become physicians, dentists, veterinarians, nurses, or physical therapists.

The decision to pursue a career in the health professions should be made only after careful reflection of your personal motivation based on your experiences, together with a realistic assessment of the demands of medical training and practice.

You should plan to consult regularly with advisors, health professionals, professors, family and others who care about you.                            

If you find yourself drawn to the health professions, take time to evaluate your options. You will need to take a series of courses. To help you plan, refer to this web site often. While much of the advice you will see here is geared toward medical, dental, and veterinary schools, don’t forget that there are many other opportunities in the health professions.