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Giving Tuesday: 5 Ways Your Gift Makes a Difference

Home Blog Giving Tuesday: 5 Ways Your Gift Makes a Difference

This holiday season, join our mission to help Duke students thrive.

At Duke, our Division of Student Affairs helps operate every area of campus life outside the classroom — including dining, student health and wellness, our identity and cultural centers, and more. We do this with a specific mission in mind: creating a campus-wide culture of belonging that empowers all Blue Devils to achieve success in their academic work and beyond.

On this Giving Tuesday, we invite you to be part of this transformative journey. By supporting our work, you contribute to a legacy of excellence and inclusivity that defines the Blue Devil spirit.

Here are 5 ways your gift can enrich the Duke experience for our students, creating ripples of change that extend far beyond campus.

1. Your gift equips the next generation of young leaders.

No matter what they study while they’re here, Blue Devils of all disciplines go on to become leaders in their industries and their communities. By investing in their leadership skills today, we can empower our young leaders for the responsibilities and opportunities they will face tomorrow.

Our division’s Leadership Initiative supports accessible leadership trainings, programs, and services for undergraduate and graduate/professional students:

  • A new program hosted by the Women’s Center connects a cohort of students with alumni, civic leaders, and professionals who are women of color. These women serve as mentors, helping students navigate workplaces and honor their identities.
  • A peer mentoring program, hosted by the Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity (CSGD), pairs first-year students with upper-class students who share identities with them, so that they can build a community of support.

  • The Armstrong Ambassadors Program, hosted by the Center for Multicultural Affairs (CMA), offers Duke students a supportive platform to explore activism and justice initiatives on campus while building coalitions across communities.

2. Your gift creates opportunities for learning outside the classroom.

We support the university’s academic mission by creating opportunities for experiential learning. For many students, this experience takes the form of internships, as they gain professional skills and practical knowledge while working with one of our Student Affairs teams.

For others, this might take the form of a Living Learning Community. The Duke International Student Center’s (DISC) Living Learning Community, which launches in Fall 2024, will be a new space where 60-80 students live together within a Quad to exchange cultures and learn more about being a global citizen.

Our division also supports time-bound opportunities for immersive learning. The Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture hosts a three-day retreat for incoming first-year students to gain critical knowledge about racial socialization and resilience in college. Using the construct of Community Cultural Wealth, the On the Way Experiential Learning Program prepares students for success from the moment they set foot on campus.

Whether the experience lasts a few days or a full semester, Duke’s immersive learning programs can impact students for a lifetime. Your gift allows Student Affairs to continue upholding Duke’s commitment to academic excellence, embracing opportunities to learn in every context.

Duke undergrads with Project BUILD volunteer at Durham Community Preschool, a non-profit in Durham, where some of the students just finished painting the playground set.

3. Your gift supports community events for the entire campus.

Extracurricular events are a vital component of our mission to build a community where every Blue Devil knows they belong. The Student Involvement Initiative funds university-wide traditions, activities, and events for all students. You can also support specific campus events, many of which are hosted by our Identity & Cultural Centers:

  • Reproductive Justice Conference: This annual conference hosted by the Women’s Center brings together universities in the Triangle area to discuss reproductive rights and access to reproductive health services.
  • Jumu’ah Support & Ramadan Programming: The Center for Muslim Life (CML) hosts weekly prayer services so that students who are away from home can worship alongside their peers. During the month of Ramadan, when many Muslim students fast during the day, CML also provides morning and evening meals.
  • Shabbat Dinner Funding: Jewish Life at Duke (JLD) hosts Shabbat meals every week for Duke students who want to maintain this practice while living on campus full-time. These dinners allow Jewish students to connect with one another and worship together, and your support helps facilitate these experiences.
  • CSGD Collaborative Program Funding: The Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity (CSGD) regularly partners with faculty and campus organizations to host programs that serve student needs while strengthening intra-division relationships. Recently, CSGD has collaborated with the Wellness Center and the Women’s Center on an initiative to address intimate partner violence.
Duke students stop by a table on BC Plaza for National Coming Out Day 2023

4. Your gift helps eliminate financial barriers for students.

We want every Blue Devil to experience the full scope of what Duke has to offer, regardless of their financial background. That’s why the Duke Student Government (DSG) Endowment expands student access to time-honored Duke traditions, such as K-ville tenting and university celebrations.

Our commitment to equity also means that we provide targeted assistance for common financial barriers that Duke students face. The Student Affairs Diversity Initiative funds emergency needs and educational initiatives related to equity and inclusion. Likewise, the Center for Gender & Sexual Diversity (CSGD) allocates funds to support transgender, genderqueer, and non-binary students who need assistance paying for transition-related expenses.

This Giving Tuesday, with your generosity, we can dismantle the financial hurdles that might otherwise overshadow a student’s journey here at Duke. Every gift, large or small, strengthens our ability to build a campus where every Blue Devil can belong and thrive.

Panoramic photo of the Brodhead Center, as viewed from underneath a stone arch

5. Your gift allows us to upgrade campus facilities and resources.

None of our programming would be possible without physical and digital infrastructure. Among the facilities we hope to upgrade is the Brodhead Center, which needs updated technologies in meeting rooms and common spaces. We would also love to upgrade and replace equipment in the Arts Annex that is used for student and community projects, as well as sustain visual art exhibitions and installations in the Rubenstein Arts Center.

On the virtual front, the Duke International Student Center (DISC) hopes to acquire a new interactive platform that will allow them to host virtual summer orientation programs in multiple languages for incoming international students.

By investing in the spaces where Blue Devils can dream, create, and connect, you help us cultivate a vibrant learning community. Your contribution is the key to unlocking a world where state-of-the-art facilities meet the brilliance and creativity of our students.

Support our mission

This Giving Tuesday, let’s reaffirm our dedication to the next generation of Blue Devils. Every gift, no matter its size, helps us pursue our mission and equip Duke students to succeed in their academic, professional, and personal lives.