DPT Summer Discovery Program

Are you interested in the profession of Physical Therapy or related health care fields? If your answer is YES, then the Duke DPT Summer Discovery Program was created with YOU in mind!

This year's Summer Discovery Program will be held from Monday, June 12- Friday, June 16, 2023, and will be hosted in-person only. There will be no virtual option this year. Participants who have participated in previous years (virtually or in-person) will not be eligible to participate again this year.  

The application is now open and the deadline to apply is April 15, 2023. 



  1. Currently be enrolled in an accredited undergraduate institution as a Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, or Senior.
    * Students who have completed their undergraduate degree and/or are enrolled in graduate programs can apply, but SDP will prioritize students currently enrolled as undergraduates.
  2. Have an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher
  3. Fulfill one or more of the following: 
    • Underrepresented Minority
    • First-generation to go to college
    • Economically Disadvantaged
    • Interested in serving underserved populations

The Program

The Summer Discovery Program is designed to expose undergraduate students with a keen interest in PT to the profession of physical therapy and to the Duke DPT experience. This program is for students interested in the profession of physical therapy, especially those from demographic communities that are currently underrepresented among licensed physical therapists.

This is an intensive week that will immerse participants completely in the profession of physical therapy. At the end of this week, participants will have gained exposure to multiple areas in the profession and have the information needed to be more competitive and to more effectively matriculate into Doctor of Physical Therapy programs.

Participants will have access to some of the top faculty in the profession of physical therapy and receive mentorship from current Duke DPT students, faculty, local clinicians, and admission specialists.


Participation in the Duke DPT Summer Discovery Program will provide:

  • Engaged, structured exposure to: 
    • Physical Therapy as a profession, including career tracks and specialties
    • Duke DPT course content and learning opportunities
  • Meaningful interactions with current students, faculty, alumni, and staff
  • Mentorship as it relates to the DPT program, applying, and matriculation process 
  • Continued mentorship after the conclusion of the program


  • Participation includes a 4-day summer immersion experience held at low cost to invited students. Participants only need to cover their travel expenses to and from Duke, and all other expenses are covered by the Duke DPT program. 
  • Attendance at all program events is required for all participants.


The program will prioritize current undergraduate students interested in the profession of physical therapy and/or related health science professions. The program is open to all applicants; however, it is our hope to encourage applicants who are from groups underrepresented within the profession of physical therapy, economically disadvantaged/first generation to attend college, or students interested in serving underrepresented populations.

Successful applicants will:

  • Have a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0