Emory  Buck
Senior Assistant Resident
House Staff

Start Year: 2020


Chapel Hill, NC

Where did you attend university/college?
University of Virginia

Where did you attend medical school?
Georgetown University

What are your career goals?
I am planning to pursue a fellowship in Pulmonary/Critical Care with an interest in pursuing a career in the pulmonary vascular disease space. I hope to work in an academic institution as a clinician-educator and pursue a career in medical education. My other interests include physician wellbeing and the role of arts and humanities in medicine.

"The Duke Family is very real and it was palpable from the very first day. Everyone truly cares about each other and wants to support each other. We celebrate all the wins together and really practice medicine as a team."

-Emory Buck

Reflections on the Duke Program

What were you looking for in a residency program?
I was looking for a program that would push me to become the best clinician I could be and give me autonomy in clinical decision making. It was equally important to me to find one that had a strong support system and compassionate culture in place for its residents. On my interview day Dr. Zaas spoke of “finding your and” here; she addressed the importance of mentorship to decide on one’s career path, but also the fact that many of us have goals outside of pursuing a particular fellowship or specialty training. This resonated with me and I felt as though this program would support me in finding my ‘and’ as well as mentor me along my career path. I was also looking for a program with people I felt I could connect with, work with, and be friends with. It was obvious on interview day that the residents were all friends with each other as well.

What are the strengths of the Duke Program?
Duke’s strength is the people. We have an incredible leadership team headed by Dr. Zaas as well as dedicated faculty who are committed to teaching. The community of the Duke Family is incredibly supportive throughout all of the difficult moments that come with resident life. The three hospital system provides us with a diverse patient population to serve and the 4+2 scheduling system also creates an important systole-diastole to our months and helps to balance other aspects of life.

What are your observations about the relationships between faculty and house staff?
The faculty love educating residents and strive to provide the right amount of autonomy. They support us in the role of primary caregivers and encourage us to trust our own physician intuition but are always available if needed. They have been great mentors as well and always offer advice on how to best achieve our professional goals.

Tell us about your co-residents. What has helped you connect, support each other, and form friendships?
My co-residents have been amazing. They are so smart and successful, but they are also such a humble group. It has definitely been challenging to find safe ways to connect in the age of COVID but my co-residents have been so creative – from Zoom happy hours to outdoor distanced small barbecues, they have been great. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of friends to go through this phase of life with.

About Duke University and Durham

What has surprised you most about Duke?
How genuinely kind everyone is! The Duke Family is very real and it was palpable from the very first day. Everyone truly cares about each other and wants to support each other. We celebrate all the wins together and really practice medicine as a team.

What is the best thing about living in Durham and the Triangle?
There are a ton of great things about Durham and the Triangle. I lived in a city for medical school and I feel like Durham offers you the convenience of a city without many of the hassles. There are amazing restaurants; an incredible art scene with the NCMA, the Nasher, and Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC); and great outdoor activities with hiking trails and the Eno river. There are also plenty of sports games with Duke games, Durham Bulls (minor league baseball), and the Hurricanes (NHL). If that wasn’t enough, the mountains are only a few hours in one direction and beaches a few hours in the other!

How does the Triangle appeal to people of diverse backgrounds?
The Triangle is home to all sorts of people. I had the privilege of growing up in the area but many of my peers are new to the area and have come to see that many people who move here choose to stay because of the opportunities and quality of life that the area provides.

Where did you choose to live and why?
I chose to live in the area nearby the hospital called Watts-Hospital-Hillandale. My significant other and I chose to buy a house and we couldn’t be happier. We live a five-minute drive from work for me in a dog-friendly neighborhood with our favorite coffee shop a ten-minute walk away. I feel so lucky to be able to live so close to work but still have a small-town feel. Durham is unique in that this is so achievable, but you can also choose to live in the downtown area if you’re looking for more of a city feel.

What advice would you give to someone looking to move to Durham?
Durham is a wonderful place to live! I think everyone finds what they are looking for here, be it sports, arts-scene, downtown, suburban, etc. There truly is something for everyone!

What are your interests outside of medicine?
I love spending time with my family, friends, significant other, and new puppy! I also enjoy practicing yoga, reading, cooking and baking (especially for my medicine teams). I have recently taken up tennis again as well and I am trying my hand at needlepointing.

House Staff