Blog

Blog Author:
Cyan DeVeaux

Hey everyone!

My name is Cyan and I am currently a freshman here at Duke. I’m from New York so I’m a bit far from home, but my experiences at Duke make it worth the travel. What I really love about my school, and part of my decision to come here, had to do with all of the opportunities that are offered. I came here telling myself to take advantage of the resources that I have while I can.

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Blog Author:
Nick Antonicci, Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity

My name is Nicholas Antonicci, I use the pronouns he/him/his, and I'm the Director of the Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity here at Duke University.

Yesterday, I woke to the news of tragedy of 50 innocent people killed at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, a gay bar on a night celebrating Latinx people and communities.

I struggle to put feelings and emotions into words, to put pain into soundbites that appease and comfort those around me.

I struggle with balancing immense sadness for the lives lost, with anger at the forces which allowed this to happen and will continue to happen, namely homophobia and transphobia. I balance wanting to care for others, with frustration in the ways many of those who are responding are centering the feelings of heterosexual and cis peoples.

Blog Author:
Larry Moneta, Vice President for Student Affairs

Dear Duke Families,

As I look out my office window, I have the privilege of seeing our students walking (and rushing) by between classes, meals, meetings and study venues. So many things are apparent on the rare occasion that I get to just pause and admire the passersby. I notice that many seem either immune to the winter chill or in denial about the need to wear warmer clothes! I notice that rarely is anyone walking alone. Students travel in pairs, groups and masses! I notice that some kind of technological device is apparently welded to their ears or their palms (hopefully talking or texting with you). But, I also notice how remarkably different they are, reflecting the substantial and wonderful diversity within the Duke student body.

Blog Author:
Elizabeth Hoyler, '16

With senior year comes the rhetoric of the ultimates, the finals, the last-times. Planning for my family’s Thanksgiving this year has proved no different. “I told your cousins that this was your last Thanksgiving, so they’re coming up!” my mom told me on the phone last week. What? My “last” Thanksgiving?

I wanted to tell my mom that she was wrong. This isn’t going to be my “last” Thanksgiving like it was my last time book-bagging, last fall in Durham, or anything of the like. But as I think about it more, her comment seems less dramatic and more pragmatic.

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Blog Author:
A community response

Jack D explains what happened:

As many of you know, early in the morning yesterday someone entered my dorm and sprawled on the wall of the first floor, “Death to all fags @ Jack.” In just five words and an ‘at’ symbol, my sense of security and safety on this campus was shattered. 

Efforts have been made to find the assailant but the likelihood of success seems minimal. However, the person who wrote on the wall is greatly unimportant.

I would like for people to understand who I am. I wish to be a peer and not a name. I grew up near Boston with a single mother and siblings. I played sports throughout school and spent summers volunteering. I am a freshman but have lived as a proudly out and visible gay man on Duke’s campus. I am Jack. I am the fag. I do not deserve this treatment. No one deserves this treatment.

Blog Author:
Chris Heltne, Student Affairs

Rabbi Elana Friedman began her work as Campus Rabbi for Jewish Life at Duke earlier this year. She can be reached at the Freeman Center for Jewish Life, 919-684-3138, or elana.friedman@duke.edu.

Blog Author:
Casey Tissue, '16

Social life?  Sleep?  Good Grades?  It seems we can only ever get two of these at a time here at Duke.  Even after countless time management lectures, and many hours spent on schedules, I struggle to find balance. The careful plans I make always seems to fly out the window within a matter of hours.  An exciting social event will come up, assignments will take longer than I expected, or an unexpected wave of exhaustion will wash over me as I grow tired from trying to keep up.  Life can certainly be chaotic here, especially at the end of the semester.  The stresses of Duke have a great influence over the choices we make on an everyday basis. Should we eat dinner with friends or get an extra hour of studying?  Is it worth an all-nighter to study math?  Pressure comes from parents, other students, teachers, and even people we don’t even know.

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Blog Author:
Christy Lohr Sapp, Associate Dean for Religious Life, Duke Chapel

A friar, an imam and a rabbi walk into a lounge … This might sound like the start of a joke, but actually, it’s the start of an interfaith gathering on campus. The Duke Chapel Lounge is not a 70s-era bar with dim lighting, fruity drinks and mood music, but it is a place where connections are made and interfaith interaction happens on a regular basis.

Blog Author:
Isabella Kwai, '16

I finally caught up with an old friend from freshmen year last week. After promising each other we’d grab coffee, we finally locked down a slot that suited us both. Neither of us cancelled, neither of us had assignments due in 24 hours and neither of us were late. It was a fantastic reunion. After all, we had a whole two months to catch up on.  We discussed classes and future career dreams, laughed about old flames and confessed new ones. Yes, she was still pre-med and no, I was still not. I was surprised by how easily we fell back into our old friendship, how enjoyable it was, how much I missed her.

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Fraternity & Sorority Life

On Wednesday, Duke's Kappa Alpha Theta sorority moved closer to their goal of raising $12,000 this year for their philanthropy, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA).  The chapter hosted their annual Rock the