Admissions Blog

A confident-looking young man in his medical scrubs stares confidently into the mirror, proud to be starting his medical career. Sauntering into the hospital, a busy nurse stops him and starts giving him orders. His blank stare was followed by this famous monologue...

“Four years of pre-med, four years of med school,
and tons of unpaid loans
have made me realize...I don't know jack.”

This iconic opening scene from the popular television comedy series, “Scrubs” is hilarious but accurately sums up the emotions of a first-year medical intern.

My first day was a nightmare. I was the Solo House Officer1 attached to a busy surgical team with 30 patients, a much higher ratio than normal. A Solo House Officer is a tragically ironic name since “solo” conveys that you are independent and in control, however the reality is overwhelmingly the opposite. You are saddled with so many responsibilities and work that your primary function of stepping out of the hospital is to nap and shower so that you don’t spread head lice to your colleagues. Looking back, it’s a miracle I survived those days.

Dr Jaemin Park, a graduate from Class 2014, is currently a Pathology resident at Baylor College of Medicine, US. Prior to graduation, Jaemin spent two months in India (one month in Tenali as a volunteer in an orphanage). The town of Tenali has few foreign visitors and even fewer foreign volunteers. The entire town soon knew about Jaemin and two local Telugu Indian newspapers even featured him. Jaemin shares his story.


Jaemin with Dr T Thirumoorthy at the Duke-NUS Graduation & Hooding Ceremony on 31 May 2014. Dr Thirumoorthy taught the class about the importance of empathy in young doctors - something that resonated deeply with Jaemin during his time in Tenali

Towards the end of my 4th year in medical school, I thought, ‘Why not use the two months until graduation to do something truly meaningful?’ I knew that once residency began, it will be challenging to commit myself for a long volunteer trip.

By Eric Cher, Class of 2014

Every year, a group of Duke-NUS students opt to do their 3rd year research here in Duke. Coming from an academically and culturally diverse background, we hope to share our Singapore experience to the community here in Durham, NC.

Duke-NUS Durham community service was set up to oversee all community service activities undertaken by Duke-NUS students in Durham. Reaching out to the local community and helping our students gain a better understanding into global healthcare challenges are two primary objectives of the committee. Through a series of community service events organized by the group, we hope to empower all students with the necessary knowledge and experience that will enhance their medical education and beyond.