The focus at Duke is interdisciplinary learning in the classroom, in the research lab and even in the residence halls. Our commitment to interdisciplinary research and teaching is grounded in the belief that understanding multiple dimensions of complex problems -- such as environmental pollution, economic competitiveness, human health and cultural difference -- is essential for becoming a responsible citizen in an ever-changing global society. Our faculty members are committed to giving students the individual attention that pushes them to excel and nurtures their ideas. Undergraduates, even in their first-year, interact with senior faculty on a regular basis in efforts such as the Focus Program and a series of first-year seminars. Faculty also are devoted to interdisciplinary learning, which emphasizes breadth of knowledge and prepares students to confront the intellectual and cultural challenges of our global society. At Duke, research isn’t just for upperclassmen majoring in science, but a way of learning that begins with students’ first year on campus and continues throughout their college experience. More than half of our undergraduates complete faculty-mentored research projects, working with professors from every department across campus.
Life at Duke “is very relaxed,” and “you can either be a part of nothing, or you can be so over-committed that it’s not even funny.” Because “the student union and other organizations provide entertainment all the time, from movies to shows to campus-wide parties,” there’s “a wealth of on-campus opportunities to get involved.” Indeed, weekends are for relaxing, and “people usually stay on campus for fun,” because hometown Durham “has a few quirky streets and squares with restaurants, shops, clubs, etc., but to really do much you have to go to Raleigh or Chapel Hill,” each twenty to thirty minutes away by car.