Blog

Blog Author:
Larry Moneta, Vice President for Student Affairs

Dear students,

The ever-changing population on Duke’s campus comes with both great benefits for a deeper understanding of an increasingly diverse community, and inevitable strains as these changes push at the boundaries of our existing spaces.

Today, we are happy to announce forward movement, with the designation of areas in the Bryan Center specifically for our Asian-American and Latinx student communities, to be ready for occupancy in the Fall. In addition, two new Program Coordinators and additional graduate student staff will be hired to work with these groups. 

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:
Sean Novak and India Pierce

 

Collaboration & Change for a Common Good
A Reflection on Collaboration in Campus Life
India Pierce and Sean Novak

 

One way that we can work effectively to create change for a common good is to work collaboratively across communities. With this in mind, India Pierce from the Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity (CSGD) came together with Sean Novak from the Center for Multicultural Affairs (CMA) to create a program that explored the intersections of race and sexual orientation. As part of the CMA’s En/Countering Racism series (E/C), they created a program for students to gather and explore intersectionality. This was done in order to deepen participants’ understanding of themselves and others as a means to building stronger coalitions for social justice.

Blog Author:
Li-Chen Chin, Director of Intercultural Programs

This July I took a six-day trip to China. When my flight from Shenzhen to Beijing finally landed after a 13-hour delay, everybody was relieved and eager to get off the plane. I noticed a young petite woman who had sat near me struggled to get her carry-on luggage from the overhead bin. I reached up and brought her luggage down while the people surrounding us watched. She thanked me and we went our separate ways.

During the long delay in Shenzhen, I struck up a casual conversation in Mandarin with a woman from Beijing who was about a decade older than me. Although we didn’t sit together on the flight, we re-connected on the tarmac as we waited for the shuttle bus to the terminal. I told her that I helped someone with her luggage on the plane, and she replied, “What you should have done,” she continued, “was to tell the men standing around to go assist her.”

Blog Author:
Li-Chen Chin, Director of Intercultural Programs

 At the invitation of an international education consulting firm, I went to China for the first time in July.  Although I was born and raised in Taiwan, I had never been to Mainland China.  My trip got off to a rocky start as the flight from Raleigh-Durham to Washington DC was delayed, thus I missed my international connection.  After a long negotiation with the airline’s representative in DC, and literally running through two airports, I was relieved and happy to finally be able to get on a flight to Beijing in Chicago.  As I settled into my seat, I looked around and realized that I was no longer a “minority.”  There was comfort in being among people who looked like me. 

by Zoila Airall

On Tuesday evening, Li-Chen Chin was one of eight recipients of the 2013 Samuel DuBois Cook Award.  Li-Chen, director of intercultural programs for Student Affairs, was acknowledged for the many ways in which her work as a cultural center director, supervisor and administrator exemplifies Dr. Cook's model of seeking to improve relations of people of all backgrounds. Many of you who have come to know Li-Chen will agree that she is the quintessential team player who is often the thoughtful voice of reason. If you have not had the opportunity to meet or work with Li-Chen, we encourage you to do so.

by Monika Jingchen Hu

Thumbnail 2013 in the Chinese lunar calendar is the Year of the Snake, and it is my second Chinese New Year spent outside and far away from China. Though not being together with my family, I felt well received by some people (Chinese and non-Chinese) whom I just got to know, as part of my Chinese New Year celebrations – thanks to my house mate.