Chemistry at Duke?

<p>I was accepted to Duke and I was wondering if anyone can tell me more about the chemistry program and how it ranks in comparison to Cornell and UC Berkeley.</p>


<p>Heyyyyyyy, you're awesome. Chemistry is awesome. </p>

<p>From what I know, Duke's chemistry program isn't "top 20", but it's at Duke, so it's still going to be a great program. That being said, Berkeley's chem department is top notch--along with the likes of Stanford, Caltech, etc. I got into Duke, and I'll probably be majoring in chemistry, but I didn't apply to Berkeley. However, because you did and got accepted, in terms of departments only, Berkeley would be the better choice. Not sure about Cornell.</p>

<p>Yeah- Duke has a great Chemistry department. I was a Chemistry major...made it to Physical Chem and then ended up dropping...but I LOVED the department as a whole.</p>

<p>You'll take the standard retinue of courses (Gen Chem, Orgo, P Chem, Inorganic, A Chem, Biochem/Biophysical depending on what path you choose), with labs, yada yada. I was INCREDIBLY impressed with all my professors. Not only were they doing great research BUT they were all so helpful and really invested in helping their students do well. I thought the classes were fantastic. Dr. MacPhail teaches a great "baby" (1 semester) P Chem class..he made the material bearable..he occasionally teaches Gen Chem as well. Pretty much I felt like I knew much of the department and could always go to them for help with ANYTHING. I even had professors from Chemistry writing my internship recommendations for art museums because I trust them and know them so well. It's that kind of atmosphere. Plus the graduate students are also really great resources...most of them are always willing to help UGrads.</p>

<p>You can also choose a concentration...Biochem, Pharmacology, or Environmental Chem...all of which involve taking lower level graduate courses in the field, yada yada. Many students also choose to do an ACS certification, which can never hurt. You'll also, if you're a BS major, be required to do an independent study, which hopefully, as a Chem major, you want to anyway. I know people who started researching as early as freshman year, and you can do your study not only in a Chemistry lab, but if you'd rather in the Duke Med research labs...there's alot of leniency with what kind of research you do. And positions are certainly not hard to find. You can also, after completing orgo, apply to be a TA for Gen Chem/Orgo Lab...TA's aren't just graduate students...and believe me when I say being a TA is a really neat experience! </p>

<p>The one complaint I had is that there was a bit more restriction in my schedule than that of my friends. I had to take all these Chemistry courses but also 2 semesters of Physics, Bio 25, Math 103, Bio 118/119 and plus all my Chem/Biochem courses which is A LOT (I did, however, choose one of the harder paths, and if you're Pre-Med you have to take most of these anyway). I didn't get to study abroad, which, as I am not solely an Art History major, is incredibly frustrating. BUT if Chemistry is what you want to do, this is obviously not a problem. If you have AP credit for Gen Chem this helps as well, if you think you can go straight into orgo.</p>

<p>I should also mention that I didn't drop my Chemistry major because of the department. Like I said, it's a great department. Classes are great. Professors are phenomenal. Labs are studying really interesting/relevant things. I just found something else I was passionate that's why I ended up dropping it. Those other two schools are great for Chemistry...obviously Berkeley is at the very top of the heap in the USA...but Duke is a great school as well, and the Chemistry department is a great one to be a part of. Plus you get everything that is distinctly DUKE like the great combination of world class academics, insane athletics, and a really fun social atmosphere. Any school would be a great choice, but I must pull for Duke:)</p>

<p>duke is duke, and it is amazing. but berkeley's chemistry program is supossed to be one of the best in the country.</p>

<p>hard decision man. i hope i'm in one like that next year LOL. beats not having any of them as a choice...</p>

<p>Are you considering graduate school? I know it's a far way away...but it is something to think about. There is sort of this odd stigma against staying at your UGrad institution for graduate school. Considering that...Duke might be a good UGrad choice and if you do well you can certainly go to Berkeley for graduate. (And everytime I check they're #1 in the country...)</p>