Admissions Blog

A little about me

Two years ago, I graduated from Duke University with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. I’m now a wide-eyed, enthusiastic first year medical student. In the two years between graduation and matriculation, I conducted research in sleep and circadian rhythms with Dr. Joshua Gooley at Duke-NUS. Having known I have wanted to pursue a medicine for quite some time, most people ask me why I didn’t join medical school directly. Why take two years off to do research? I needed a break is what I usually answer. Jokes aside, honestly, instead of going to medicine immediately, I wanted to have an extended opportunity to do research. I have always believed research to be the mother of medicine; so to have unfiltered time to conduct research before pursuing medicine was important for me.

Graduating from Duke University

How I spent my 2 years

Experientia docet in Latin means 'Experience is the best teacher’  
By: Yuka Suzuki, PhD Class of 2013

I am a first-year student at the Duke-NUS PhD Program in Integrated Biology and Medicine (IBM), with a primary interest in cancer genomics. Known as a foodie, I always look for the best food places, in particular Japanese food.

My second love is science, and so I chose to do a PhD in science. However, running computer scripts and churning out huge datasets was something I had never envisioned previously. Once I failed a computer programming class so badly I vowed never to touch a computer terminal again. However, I found myself getting re-acquainted with computational biology as I worked on my master’s dissertation in epigenomics at the University College of London (UCL). This was where I studied how epigenetics could lead to cancer in humans using a technology called next-generation sequencing and where I got my first taste of genomics. 

Joining Duke-NUS was serendipitous because after graduation I still didn’t know what I wanted to specialize in. Next generation sequencing was my first thought.