Lemur Star of Zoboomafoo Dies at the Age of 20

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Jovian, a Coquerel’s sifaka and star of the children's show Zoboomafoo, passed away Nov. 10 after 20 years at the Duke Lemur Center. The star lemur died of kidney failure earlier this month but leaves behind a legacy as a playful friend and caring father. His death led to an outpouring of sympathy on social media—with many teens and twentysomethings sharing fond memories of the lemur's days in the spotlight during their childhood. Martin Kratt, Trinity ’89 and co-host of Zoboomafoo, said Jovian’s playful attitude and natural beauty made him a natural fit for the starring role. The show aired 65 episodes from 1999 to 2001. Jovian was also described as a “capable and caring father,” who had 12 children with two different partners, leading to four grandchildren and two on the way. He is survived by his mate Pia and their family group which includes three young children, as well as older offspring who left the family group. His body will be frozen and used for scientific study, Haring said.

Patient Admitted to Duke Hospital Tests Negative for Ebola Virus

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A patient was admitted to Duke Hospital where he was monitored for Ebola earlier this month. The man, who arrived at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey from travel in Liberia, developed a fever in Person Country where he travelled shortly after taking a bus to Durham. The man was immediately transferred to Duke Hospital, where staff had previously received extensive training in preparation for such an occurrence. After a preliminary test came back negative for Ebola, a second round of testing confirmed that the patient did not have the Ebola virus. Dr. Cameron Wolfe, an assistant professor of medicine in the infectious diseases department and director of biopreparedness for Duke Preparedness and Response Center, said that Duke has one of the nation’s best infection control programs, adding that the school is in a good position in terms of local resources, expertise and in-hospital management capacity.

DKU Celebrates its Grand Opening

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Duke Kunshan University celebrated its grand opening this month with a two-day event. The event—much awaited after significant delays halted the opening—highlighted ties between the American and Chinese education systems in order to address societal problems. It featured a tour of the campus, celebratory speeches and a discussion on the relationship between Duke and DKU—which focused on the issue of academic freedom. Nora Bynum, vice provost of DKU and China initiatives, had previously noted that “academic freedom is a perpetual problem in China,” but Duke has made clear its commitments to academic freedom at DKU. The event further celebrated the three-way partnership between Duke, Wuhan University and the city of Kunshan, with speeches from all parties underlining the impact of DKU on the future of Sino-American relations. President Richard Brodhead emphasized how grateful Duke is for the strong support received from its partners, including the city of Kunshan that created DKU. Peter Lange, former provost and current chair of the DKU Board of Trustees, added that DKU is meant to inspire innovation on Duke’s campus as well, highlighting the importance of learning through living in a new environment with a different culture.

Tillis Takes Hagan’s Senate Seat in GOP Triumph

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Republican Thom Tillis, North Carolina Speaker of the House, defeated Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan in a close race for N.C’s Senate seat during the recent midterm elections. Tillis won with 48.88 percent of the vote while Hagan received 47.2 percent and Libertarian Sean Haugh won the remaining 3.73 percent. The race—which placed significant focus on women's health, such as reproductive rights, as well as education and healthcare—was featured in the national spotlight due to its back-and-forth battle and significant funding from outside sources. The candidates remained close in the polls leading right up to Election Day, and Tillis's victory was key to allowing Republicans to take control of the Senate. Results were surprising to many, considering several projections that Hagan would win until results came rolling in from the last precincts to report. Though a new law concerning voter identification will not go fully into effect until 2016, certain provisions—including eliminating same-day registration and out-of-precinct voting—were in play for this election, but turnout in the state hit a record high for a midterm year and early voter turnout increased by more than 20 percent, according to the Board of Elections.