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Experiential Orientation Programs 2022

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Program Descriptions 
Instead of being organized by dorm, Orientation Leaders (and New to Duke students) will be divided by theme into EXperiential Orientation Groups. The 17 programs and descriptions can be found below. Our student Program Directors are hard to work still naming some of these programs! 

Project Play

Join the team in Duke Rec and Fitness as you explore your wellness, Duke sport culture, and the sport industries in USA. Through group activities, field trips, competitions, facility tours, and more, this immersive track will give you the opportunity to move, use your brain, and build your best you for your time at Duke. Project Play is not accepting OL applications at this time.

Project Arts 

This year, Project Arts aims to provide an in-depth introduction to the arts communities at Duke and in Durham, while also creating an inclusive social support network through a common passion for the arts. We will provide information, connections, and tools that first-year students need to get involved in the flourishing on-campus art community. More importantly, pArts hopes to create an inclusive social and support network through our common passion for the arts. Along with the arts-related programming we will have each day, the majority of our activities will give you an opportunity to connect with your fellow first-years as well as upperclassmen staffers. P-Arts is not accepting OL applications at this time.

Project BUILD

Project BUILD is an introduction to life at Duke and in Durham through participating in community service. BUILD itself is an acronym –BUILD stands for Building Undergraduate Involvement in the Life of Durham. We typically introduce BUILDers to service opportunities in the Durham community by partnering with service sites such as TROSA, the Scrap Exchange, Campus Farms, and the Duke Lemur Center. P-BUILD is not accepting OL applications at this time. 

Project Citizen

This initiative will be co-sponsored by Duke POLIS and will help students ask themselves, “What does it mean to be a model citizen?” Focusing on four aspects of citizenship (informed, active, compassionate, and global), program participants will get the chance to take deep dive into how being an engaged member of society makes a significant different in our society. Not to mention, a trip to DC to meet with Duke representatives on Capital Hill. 

Project Change

With a focus on changing the world for the better, this experience will have you focus on one community organization, provide support to the organization, and meet the people that keep that organization thriving. This year, Project Change will host community engagement programs over the course of the week that often focus on inequity in the community. The main charge will be to do community action work centered on clauses in neighborhood lease agreements that stipulate to move into certain houses you cannot sell them to a certain members of our community. 

Project Earth

Sustainable Duke is taking the lead on developing Project Earth, a track that will connect first-year students to each other, to Duke, and to the Durham community through the three pillars of sustainability; environment, economy, and community. Utilizing interdisciplinary and hands-on experiences, students will learn and interact with solutions-based sustainability and climate change programming on and off campus. This immersive track will allow first-years and their student leaders to engage with fun events and bonding activities.  This track will also provide opportunities for participants to think critically while engaging with resources to prepare them for their curricular and cocurricular careers at Duke.

Project Discover

Ever wonder why there are gargoyles all over campus? Ever want to explore the tunnels on East campus? Want to know the intertwined history of Duke and Durham? Then this experience is for you. You will hear from some of the most notable story tellers from Duke, Durham, and North Carolina as you discover the best kept secrets of our campus within the Research Triangle. P-Disco is not accepting OL applications at this time.

Project Edge

Project Edge (pEdge) is a community that encourages and enables students to pursue their passions and launch their ideas. You will look at problems through new eyes, explore the many collaborative workspaces and entrepreneurial resources here on campus, and meet a diverse array of people led by upperclass mentors who will guide you through the week and serve as resources. We’ll experiment with design-thinking, prototyping (3D printing, UX/UI design, Adobe Illustrator…), pitching, and more. Throughout the week, you will meet local entrepreneurs and leaders who are reimagining business, technology, and policy in ways that help people and build the economy. P-Edge is not accepting OL applications at this time. 

Project Farm2Table

What makes a sustainable food system? In this experience, you’ll explore that question by diving into the complex and amazing parts of our modern food systems, including at Duke and in Durham. You’ll learn more about how our food is produced, how it gets to us, how it’s prepared, and where it goes after its time on our plates. We’ll also explore ideas around food justice and equity, as well as food’s cultural significance. Throughout the week, you’ll hear from farmers, entrepreneurs, and other experts, and you’ll see how Duke is applying these ideas on campus. Come hungry! Project Farm2Table is not accepting OL applications at this time. 

Project Identity and Culture

Diversity, inclusion, and equity are important, but we often talk about them as topics of discussion or issues of debate as opposed to seeing how they are interwoven in the world we navigate every day. This track will help you understand your identities and those of others through food, history, arts, and dialogue. The conversations here will help bring together a community that advocates for change through empathy, strength, joy, and dialogue. 

Project Habitat

This experience will team up with Duke Habitat for Humanity and work on a site in a local community. After you spend your day helping build a house, you will get the chance to explore housing policies, gentrification, and other systemic items that impact an individuals ability to afford and purchase a home.

Project Media

Ever want to tell a story? Ever listen to a podcast and think, “I could do that.”? Ever want to learn how to take amazing photos? Well, come and spend time with Project Media, where we will explore the various ways we tell and capture stories. 

Project Lead

Student Engagement’s Immersive Orientation program will provide students the opportunity to increase their capacity to create positive social change. Participants will examine their leadership strengths and explore how those interact within diverse communities. Upon completion, students will feel more confident in their ability to get connected to meaningful involvement at Duke, and will have a deeper sense of belonging to the Blue Devil Family.

Project Research

Interested in doing research in college? With humanities and science tracks, p-search has something for everyone. In the lab, you’ll work with Dr. Spana, a Biology Professor with a passion for Star Wars and Harry Potter. Not too far away, in the library, the humanities students will work with Dr. Stern, a History Professor with a passion for cartography. After seeing what research entails, you’ll explore the depths of Duke’s resources and begin to develop your own research questions. Like all the other programs, building community is our main goal!  P-Research is not accepting OL applications at this time. 

Project Waves

Project Waves Pre-Orientation Program strives to create an open and honest environment in which each first year begins to see Duke as a home. Taking place at the Duke Marine Lab in Beaufort, NC, this program emphasizes community building, the acceptance of all people, and the opportunity for self discovery. We share an incredible bond that is shared between all of the crewlings and staff members. P-Waves is not accepting OL applications at this time.

Project Wellness

Team up with the student leaders in the Wellness Center to spend the week focusing on group wellness. Whether it is walks in the meditation garden, sessions dedicated to healthy practices, or learning about how to be your best self, this track will be dedicated to understanding the aspects of wellness you need to be successful in your start at Duke. 

Project WILD

PWILD’s mission is to welcome new students and create a community through a shared love of the outdoors. Challenge by choice is a part of PWILD trips in rock climbing, camping, swimming, sharing stories, and any other activities that our participants may choose to take part in. P-WILD is not accepting OL applications at this time. 

Project SEED

Project SEED is designed to accelerate incoming students’ success in STEM at Duke and beyond. Participants will be immersed in the vibrant community of scholars and practitioners involved in the field, including peers, professors, graduate students, alumni, and industry professionals. Through formal and informal gatherings with this community, students will receive guidance on connecting with faculty, navigating gateway classes and majors, and finding research opportunities and summer internships to help them make the most of their time at Duke. Excursions to industry sites in Research Triangle Park will provide opportunities for students to network with professionals in some of the most innovative and prestigious companies in the country and learn how they launched their careers. The ultimate goal of Project SEED is to ensure that our students know they belong in STEM. Sponsored by the DukeSEED office.