For Students

Duke’s support for 1G/LI students extends beyond the DukeLIFE office. Explore this page to learn more about the resources the university sustains to help students thrive.

Where can I receive academic support, tutorials, learning communities for math and science courses, and get support maximizing my study skills?
  • Check out the Academic Resource Center (ARC) to learn more about their learning consultations, group tutorials, and STEM Advancement through Group Engagement (SAGE) learning communities. Even students excelling in their classes benefit from working with the ARC staff and participating in their programs. We can’t recommend the ARC enough.
  • For students living on West Campus, the Academic Guide for your quad can also discuss general learning strategies with you. If you are not sure what kind of help you might need, meeting with a guide is a great first step.
I am planning to attend graduate/professional school. Are there any resources to help me succeed on the admission test?
  • The Academic Resource Center (ARC) offers free GRE and MCAT study sessions.
  • Students taking the LSAT should consult with the Pre-Law Advising office.
Can I borrow copies of my textbooks?
  • Yes! The Duke University Library has copies of the texbooks for the 100 largest courses on campus on reserve. These books are available for you to borrow at the Libraries for up to 3 hours. It is available to all students. Find out more about the Top Textbooks program.
  • DukeLIFE also has a program for students with high financial need to request a semester-long loan of course materials.
How do I connect with faculty outside of class?
  • The VLearn directory lists faculty who are eager to connect with students to discuss personal and academic interests. (You can filter the directory by interest.)
  • The Academic Guides have a great template for writing an email to ask faculty to connect for an informal chat.
I do not own a computer. How can I access one to complete my studies at Duke?
  • DukeLIFE has a long-term loaner laptop program for students with demonstrated high financial need. Learn more about student eligibility and access the application.
I have a research project for class. Can someone help me navigate the library resources?
    • Yes! Arianne Hartsell-Gundy is our dedicated 1G/LI Librarian. She can help you navigate these resources and learn research strategies.
I may need to go on leave for a term. Who should I talk to?
      • Your dean will help you navigate Duke's academic policies and understand how going on leave will impact your academic path and degree progress. You can find out who your dean is in Duke Hub.
      • The Timeaway Office will guide you through the leave and return process and also keep you connected to Duke while you are away.
How do I find a research opportunity?
  • Talk to faculty whose classes you’ve enjoyed and ask if they have an opening for a research assistant.
  • Find a research mentor through Muser.
  • Once you have found a mentor, you can apply to the Office of Undergraduate Research (OURS) for a grant to assist a faculty member on a research project. OURS can also help you identify a research opportunity.
Help!  I'm not sure what I want to do with my life. How do I explore my career interests and goals?
  • It's okay! Schedule a meeting with an advisor from the Career Center to reflect on your experiences and values. The advisor can help you explore and manage the many possibilities available to you after graduation.
  • Explore resources on the Career Hub, including resources for 1G/LI students.
  • If you want more do an informational interview or learn more about a specific career field, use the Ask a Blue Devil platform to connect with a Duke alum.
  • Our 1G/LI librarian, Arianne Hartsell-Gundy, can also help you use research strategies to learn more about different career paths.
I am planning to attend graduate/professional school. Are there any resources to help me succeed on the admission test? 
  • The Academic Advising Center (ARC) offers free GRE and MCAT study sessions.
  • Students taking the LSAT should consult with the Pre-Law Advising office.
I have an upcoming job/internship interview, but I don't own professional attire. How can I receive support to purchase the clothing I need? 
  • For students with high financial need, DukeLIFE has a professional attire fund. You can apply for up to $250 to purchase clothing for your interview or a conference presentation (even one on Zoom!)
  • The Career Center also has a Professional Development Fund that awards $250 stipends for the purchase of interview or professional attire. Visit their website for more information.
  • Check out the Career Center’s Attire Guide to learn more about standard work attire in your industry and dressing for an interview or career fair.
I am doing an unpaid/underpaid internship this summer. Can I receive funding to help cover my living expenses?
  • The Career Center has an Internship Funding Program to reduce the financial challenges associated with participating in such programs. Click here to learn more about the program, including student and internship eligibility.
How can I find other 1G/LI students?
  • Join the DukeLIFE student organization! They host programs and provide community space, resources, and advocacy for the 1G/LI community.
  • Sign up to be a LIFE Peer Mentor in your sophomore, junior, or senior year. We'll match you with an incoming student based on your shared academic and personal interests, so you can share your wisdom and help them navigate Duke. You'll also connect with the larger LIFE Peer Mentor community during meet ups.
How do I find 1G/LI faculty?
  • There is a directory of faculty who identify as being 1G and/or LI right here on the DukeLIFE website. Any of these faculty members would be delighted to connect with a LIFE students.
How do I find 1G/LI Duke alumni?
  • Duke First is the alumni network for first-generation and/or lower-income Duke grads. They are eager to connect with current students to offer guidance and mentorship navigating Duke (and the world beyond).
Is there a dedicated space for 1G/LI students to study or just relax?
  • Yes! The DukeLIFE space is in Perkins 318, affectionately called the Living Room. All LIFE students can use their Duke Cards to enter the space. It is open during library hours.
How do I find communities that reflect my identities?
  • Check out the cultural and identity centers in Campus LIFE. These centers offer physical space for students to be in community with each other, identity exploration programs, and education and advocacy workshops. Our identities are intersectional, so you might find a few different spaces that feel like home.
Are there resources for students who have run out of food points and I am experiencing food insecurity?
  • Yes. DukeReach is an important resource for all students, including LIFE students in need. If you are experiencing food insecurity, we encourage you to submit a report. The case managers work with each student individually to find the best solution for their situation. If you are not comfortable submitting a report, any staff member of the DukeLIFE office would be happy to connect you. The most important thing is to tell a staff member at Duke so that we can help you access the resources you need.
What should I do if I need emergency housing? 
  • DukeReach can work with students in need to help them access safe housing. Please submit a Duke Reach report or ask a staff member to submit one on your behalf so that you can be connected to the resources you need.
  • For longer-term assistance with your living expenses, contact the financial aid office to speak to an aid counselor about resources, including loans, that may be available to you.
What should I do if I am worried about the financial implications of seeking medical care?
  • There are resources at Duke that can help refer you to medical care that is in network with your insurance and/or does not require you to pay out of pocket for an appointment. If you have questions about this please contact DukeReach and a case manager will assist you. If you are experiencing an emergency, please seek immediate assistance by dialing 911 or going directly to the Duke Emergency Room. A case manager in DukeReach will be available to assist you in knowing your options should you receive a bill for services.​​
What resources does Duke have to support students' mental health?
  •  Students can participate in brief individual and group counseling, couples counseling, and more through Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) free of charge.
  • Blue Devil Care is a free telehealth service that allows students to access 24/7 support on demand or to schedule ongoing counseling appointments. Visit their website to learn how to register and access the service.
  • DuWell also hosts programs and maintains resources to support students' holistic wellness, including mental health.
  • If you are experiencing psychological distress, please submit a DukeReach report to be connected to resources. If you are experiencing an emergency and are concerned for your safety or someone else's, please seek immediate assistance by dialing 911 or go to the Duke Emergency Room.
What should I do if I don't own a computer?
  • DukeLIFE has a long-term loaner laptop program for students with high financial need. Learn more about student eligibility and access the application.
How do I search for a work-study job? 
  • Duke List features postings for on-campus and off-campus jobs year round.
  • Undergraduate research jobs are posted to Muser.
How can I learn more about budgeting, navigating loans, and other personal finance topics?
  • Make an appointment to meet with a counselor from Personal Finance @ Duke. The counselor can help you craft a budget for your living expenses, learn more about loans and credit, and even discuss the foundations of savings and credit.

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