Summer FAQ

Do you have any questions about the DukeGEN Summer Programs?

If so, we want to hear from you.  Fill out this form and ask us a question.

We will post answers to your questions on this page.

Is this just another summer internship?  What's special about DEC? 

It’s more than an internship. The internship involves a structured curricular program that includes a weekly meeting with the other Duke interns, local guest speakers, and an opportunity to network. It is  a great  way to get connected to the Duke community in Silicon Valley. 

Internships are a great way to learn skills within one specific company, and our curriculum and community will enhance your learning.

The special sauce of this program is the combination of the hands-on entrepreneurial experience working in a start-up day to day combined with the rigorous curriculum.  The DEC students will work in the startup of a Duke-affiliated company 4.5 days of the week and will participate in the curriculum as a group for half a day.  The curriculum is a combination of hearing speakers, reading books, completing projects, attending events, and learning skills.

Will I be able to choose where I'm placed for DEC?

Yes, to a degree. Intern matches are made at the mutual agreement of both the student and the company. Please see the preferencing section of our application.

What stage companies is the DEC internship program targeting (are these start-ups that have already received outside funding or just launched?)?

There is much to learn at every stage in the life cycle of a company, and, as such, we have a spectrum of startup companies, and our over-arching goal is to match students with high-quality opportunities. On the early-stage side of the spectrum, the companies have received some amount of funding, either from an outside investor or from an incubator program.  On the later-stage side of the spectrum, the companies have received a few rounds of funding and may be a few years old and have a significant head count.

Is there any information regarding housing (since we need to estimate costs to obtain career center funding) - are we on our own for this or does the program locate housing for all the participants?

The program does not guarantee housing, so you may need to get creative. We estimate that a room in a shared apartment is $600-$900 a month.  (see the Craigslist “Rooms & Share” Listings for the San Francisco Bay Area)

In the situation that the housing is the main deterrent for applying to the program, our suggestion would be to apply for the program and let us know your situation.  It is possible that we may be able to help you find something.

I'm excited about the DEC and plan on applying. I will also apply for funding through the Career Center. Do you know of any other sources of funding that would be applicable to DEC? 

Finding funding is a challenge, and one that we are working to improve. Some of the startups have agreed to pay a stipend for the summer.  

Our suggestion would be to apply for the program, and if you get matched, we will do our best to help you find funding.

My recommender would like to send their recommendation directly to the committee

That's fine.  Have them email it directly to Howie Rhee at

Last updated: 02/21/2012