I met another Dukie, in the anatomy dissection room, of all places! As it turns out, one of our TAs spent a year as a Blue Devil! We were always told that Duke connections could find us in random corners all over the globe, but now I’ve experienced it 🙂
I tend towards ambivalence about my time there. However, the more distance arises, the more I realize what my time at Duke did (and didn’t) do for me. One thing I’ve taken with me to medical school is being primed for failure. In a good way! It sounds terrible, and at times, it was a hard lesson, but at Duke, I got so used to underachieving compared to my goals, that it became normal. That allowed me to separate success from my sense of self worth, something I’m still working on, but that has served me well so far this semester. I find myself less stressed – perhaps to a fault, considering the exam crunch – and more easygoing. I still want to do well and I do still aim high, but I don’t take the fall so personally or permanently.