Nathalie had a push-pull relationship with pre-med throughout Duke. She was drawn to the ideas of helping and healing, but felt unready to commit to the medical school path. Now a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist, her journey to this point was anything but linear. But it makes perfect sense, looking back.
A French Studies major with an Art History minor, Nathalie studied abroad in Paris. It was there that she discovered her passion for cooking and thought about the possibility of merging food and medicine. Nathalie describes the choice to follow this path as significant. “Choosing to pursue my passion for food, even in the face of disapproval from my parents, was one of the biggest and most defining choices that I've made in in my life.” She credits her parents as role models, teaching her the importance of working hard and treating others with respect.
After Duke, Nathalie started line cooking and interned with a naturopath in Los Angeles. She moved to New York City, continuing to cook professionally, earning certification as a Hatha yoga instructor, and taking courses in integrative nutrition and holistic health counseling.
In 2014, Nathalie enrolled in an intense and intensive four-year Master’s degree program in Oriental Medicine at Daoist Traditions in Asheville, NC. In addition to learning the standard Traditional Chinese Medicine approach to acupuncture and herbal medicine, she focused on the study of Classical Chinese Medicine, which is a more intuitive approach.
Currently, Nathalie works at Alchemy, a tearoom, apothecary, and acupuncture alternative health practice in Asheville, where she focuses on female reproductive health, anxiety, depression, and chronic pain. She also cooks privately for patients. She has partnered with a friend from her Duke days to develop recipes for natural postpartum products and dreams of buying an airstream travel trailer to make her practice more mobile.
She advises first-year women at Duke to know their worth. “Don’t take no shit from nobody.”