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Duke Graduation Rate

Sirworksalot

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I was looking through my Duke interview packet today and I read an article entitled "Doctor-Plus" in which it says that on sunday, may 13th, 84 students received an MD and 30 of those received or are in the process of pursuing a second advanced degree. My question is that if Duke's class size is 101, why are only 84 graduating in May? Even if you factor in those taking longer because of MD/PhD, etc., shouldn't there be students from previous classes who are graduating with this particular class? What happend to the other 17 students? Anyone know?
 

JohnHolmes

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I doubt there is much if any attrition at duke once students are enrolled.

Here is my theory. Some students will earn an MD with a second degree in 4.5 years etc, this at least is the case at Columbia for an MD/MBA program...they make not take these into account.

Additionally, since graudation is staggered due to multiple degrees, I would imagine that some years duke graduates well over 100 people, so I think it would all even out in the end. Don't forget ~40% of the students at Duke pursue 2 degrees (an MD plus something else).

CCW
 
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JohnHolmes

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Originally posted by Mr. Rosewater
i'm not surprised that duke has a crappy graduation rate. their just cleaning up after harvard and hopkins anyway, so what do you expect?

:D

Aesope's fables: The fox and the grapes, my friend, the fox and the grapes.

CCW

:p
 

omores

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From what I've heard, that was the class in which an unexpectedly large number of folks decided to take 5+ years to finish (by extending research time, for example), and the difference wasn't made up for by people from earlier classes coming in to join this one. Also, I think that two people who already had PhDs graduated the year before (they skipped third year), and one person died.

The size of the entering class varies a little from year to year as well. Ours was 99.

Attrition rate is very low -- every year a few people leave for personal reasons, but it's essentially impossible to be kicked out.
 

Sirworksalot

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Originally posted by omores
From what I've heard, that was the class in which an unexpectedly large number of folks decided to take 5+ years to finish (by extending research time, for example), and the difference wasn't made up for by people from earlier classes coming in to join this one. Also, I think that two people who already had PhDs graduated the year before (they skipped third year), and one person died.

The size of the entering class varies a little from year to year as well. Ours was 99.

Attrition rate is very low -- every year a few people leave for personal reasons, but it's essentially impossible to be kicked out.

Thanks omores. That is awful that someone died. I guess those circumstances you listed would lead to a small graduating class. It just seemed odd when I read that. Do you know why the class size varies from year to year? I would think it would be easy to maintain a number by pulling people off the wait list, unless they don't have a true set number they want. Also, I know you might not know exact reasons, but why do people drop out? I guess that is probably common at most schools? Thanks for your help!
 

omores

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I think the class size varies because of last-second changes -- three years ago, when I started, we were supposed to have 100 but apparently someone decided not to come just as classes were starting and it was too late to fill the spot (or something).

They do try -- one of my classmates was literally in her U-Haul on her way to Columbia P&S when she got a call from Duke pulling her off the waitlist. She turned around and started heading south. It was a tricky adjustment, since she didn't have an apartment or anything!

Our starting class of 99 is now at 97. On the first day of orientation, one person deferred. She's now class of 2006. Two weeks later, someone else left. I've heard different reports: some people said there was a death in his family; others said he was simply uncomfortable being so far from home. And we lost one more at the end of our first year. He decided he didn't want to be a doctor after all.

Technically, I'm not even in that class anymore. I'm doing an extra year of research and graduating in 2006. Lots of people do this -- you pay a few hundred bucks to maintain your student status, but there's no tuition charged. Nice. And I got an NIH grant that gives me a tidy little stipend each month for the year, and covers my health insurance. Even nicer!
 
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