Admissions Blog

By Padmastuti Akella, Class of 2013

My name is Padmastuti Akella. Friends call me Stuti. I was born and raised in different states of India. At the age of 14, I immigrated to the United States to complete my high school and my undergraduate studies at University of Connecticut. I worked as a research assistant for a year conducting stroke research in a neuroscience lab during which was when I seriously started thinking about a medical career with a research component. 

I applied to Duke-NUS for several reasons. I was impressed with Duke-NUS, which emulated the Duke University SOM’s curriculum and team learning methods of instruction at the school. Duke-NUS is situated in Singapore, which is one of the world’s fastest growing economies with a huge commitment to scientific research and medical education. It is conveniently a stone’s throw away from some of Asia’s technologically developing world economies like India, China and Japan. I personally have a large part of my family in India and being so close to my home country played a huge part in my decision making process. 

To elaborate on all my experiences in medical school and Singapore, I have chosen to divide it by the four years in medical school. 

Our final Student Bio video features Sharon Poh from the Class of 2013.

Sharon shares with us her inspiration to pursue medicine as a career, how her previous work experience as a dentist has added value to her as a medical student at Duke-NUS and the importance of the practice course.

Watch her video here:

By Ku Chee Wai, Class of 2013

As a final year Duke-NUS medical student, how have you grown in the past 4 years?

A lot more white hair now for sure! Well fortunately for me my perception of the profession has not changed. We put in long hours and hard work, we strive to do our best for our patients and we hope to get them healthy enough to be discharged back home into the community. I have witnessed the choices, priorities and sacrifices it takes to be a doctor. I have also met many role models whom I wish to emulate when I become a senior doctor in many years to come. Being faced with a critically ill patient was a real challenge. The emotional roller coaster that the families go through and how the choice of words we say can make things better or worst adds to the challenge. I still remember I was rather distraught when my first patient passed on. It was a young child in a road traffic accident and that made it particularly difficult.