It is with confidence that the Engineering Student Government endorses Katherine Zhang for the position of Young Trustee. All three finalists, Katherine Zhang, Neil Kondamuri and Jacob Tobia are candidates with incredible potential and have done amazing jobs as on-campus leaders in their four years at Duke. Having met and interviewed each of the candidates, we feel that Katherine Zhang’s unique range of experiences as well as her understanding of campus issues makes her both the best voice for Pratt students and the entire undergraduate body to serve on the Board of Trustees.

We feel that Katherine’s position on online education best represents the Pratt undergraduate voice. Online education is a highly prevalent and important issue that the Board of Trustees will be addressing in the upcoming years. Katherine would serve as a strong voice on the Board that understands undergraduate reservations moving forward with massive open online courses and other forms of online courseware. For Pratt students, one of the most valuable resources is direct access to professors and their research. This is an aspect of online education that we feel needs to be investigated and worked through before broad-spectrum implementation. ESG believes Katherine Zhang understands the undergraduate opinion on MOOCs and will be able to clarify this position to the Board very effectively.

Additionally, Katherine’s emphasis on interdisciplinary programs and overall prioritization of undergraduate academic issues is important to engineering students. Her commitment to meaningful and rationally achievable change typifies the character we want to see in a Young Trustee. For Pratt students, and for all students, ESG is confident Katherine Zhang is the best candidate for Young Trustee.

Anna Knight, Pratt ’15
President, Duke Engineering Student Government