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Let’s liberate the liberal arts

(04/20/22 4:00am)

To most, the utterance of the words “T-Rex” inspire the grandeur of a Jurassic predator. To Duke students, however, the term “T-Reqs” has a different meaning entirely. Duke prides itself on facilitating the growth of liberally-educated individuals while simultaneously honing professionally-applicable skills for post-graduation. As an institution that consistently toes the line between liberal arts college, D1 athletic machine, Wall Street water slide and R1 research powerhouse, Duke simply will not compromise on the ethos of the university.

Duke staff are human too

(04/13/22 4:00am)

Many of us think of Duke as simply an educational institution. It’s perhaps even one of the most prestigious universities in the country, with some of the most elite academic programs and coveted opportunities. However, to Durham County, Duke is more than a place for students to advance their education. Duke is the largest employer in the county and the fourth-largest private employer in North Carolina.  The University has even been referred to as “the city of Duke”, with nearly 35,000 employees–ranging from nurses to plumbers– making the community larger than the towns of Carrboro and Wake Forest in North Carolina. These workers can be seen throughout campus, even more visible than most members of the administration. So, when a bus is late or food is lagging on mobile order, why are we so quick to point a finger at the people responsible for our luxurious quality of life on campus? 

Defining free speech: DSG’s role in funding speakers

(04/11/22 4:47am)

Recently, Duke Student Government appropriated $16,835 for the Students for Justice in Palestine to host two speakers at their “Palestine 101” and “Narrating Resistance and Agency: Shifting the Discourse on Palestine” events. While the apportionment of such funds is traditionally a procedural stepping stone, this occasion has sparked controversy. Past comments by the speakers, particularly Mohammad El-Kurd, draw into question the role of DSG in monitoring and endorsing the language of speakers it chooses to grace with our tuition dollars. We raise the question of whether it was appropriate for DSG to fund these speakers, and whether new standards for funding similarly objectionable future speakers need to be established.

Rewriting the narrative on Duke’s basketball season

(04/05/22 4:33am)

Often, we judge our experiences based on how we feel at the most intense moment and at the end of an experience. This is known as the peak-end rule, a common psychological heuristic. After an incredible season of roller coaster highs and lows, we can’t let ourselves fall victim to this tendency. This year cannot be determined by the score of the last game, but rather by the collective memory we share of the season. We still control how we experience the end of this season, and heartbreak should not be the last thing we remember.  

Fix the fixed Young Trustee process

(03/24/22 4:00am)

We are now experiencing the repercussions of depriving the student body’s democratic voice in the Young Trustee nomination process. This Monday, a Pratt senior revealed that a Young Trustee finalist was in violation of conflict of interest standards due to his personal relationships with the majority of the Young Trustee Nominating Committee (YTNC). We support Mohammad Khatami’s guest column and consider the broader implications of his findings.

Administrative bureaucracy threatens a student-oriented university

(03/22/22 4:00am)

While we all painstakingly wait for the bi-weekly Qualtrics survey that promises Amazon gift cards, Duke should be involving campus organizations in their administrative decisions. Instead of adulating anonymous, unreliable survey data, administrators should consult those affected by their decisions – namely Duke students. This consultation should include direct conversations between the administration and groups of students who can provide a student-orientated outlook on the problem. Duke University governs by consolidating decision-making power into the hands of a small number of executives. While this small body of bureaucrats may improve efficiency in enacting policy, officials can lose touch with university groups and fall victim to serving large university donors and annual college rankings.

Bring frats back to campus

(03/15/22 4:00am)

In mid-February, Durham citizens created a petition to ban fraternities from Durham’s residential neighborhoods. Residents from the Tuscaloosa-Lakewood area campaigned to remove the five Alpha Delta Phi houses – a.k.a. “the compound” – on Chapel Hill Road. The list of complaints is expansive, describing the fraternities as “a public nuisance” that “violate noise ordinances, … permit the use of illegal drugs, … trespass on neighboring property, and otherwise disturb the peace…of the neighborhood.” How did members of Duke’s student body reach this level of incivility? More importantly, while rowdy behavior is expected from college students on campus, how did Duke allow this behavior to seep into Durham neighborhoods?

The Community Editorial Board endorses Lana Gesinsky for DSG president

(03/02/22 3:12am)

In accordance with the Community Editorial Board’s effort to reflect the interests of the Duke student body, we formally endorse Lana Gesinsky for DSG president. After meeting with Drew and Lana on Monday, we were thoroughly impressed with both candidates’ thoughtful campaigns and genuine desire to improve Duke student life. That said, Lana’s three-year tenure in the DSG Senate displays an impressive track record in campus life projects such as Blue Devil Buddies and creating more outdoor seating for dining; we value this experience as our future DSG leader. 

Where are you, Duke? The consequences of neglecting local politics

(03/01/22 5:00am)

The chaos of the Trump administration may be over, taking with it the 24/7 news coverage and tweet storms. No longer are our phones graced with news alerts of insurrections or impeachments, warmongering or womanizing. But did political activism on Duke’s campus likewise fall by the wayside?

Duke must take advantage of its new virtual infrastructure

(02/17/22 5:00am)

To many, Duke’s stagnation regarding an evolving pandemic is concerning. As new variants emerge, COVID-19 protocols regarding masking policy and asymptomatic testing remain largely unchanged. Furthermore, Duke has not comprehensively introduced virtual accommodations for students who must miss class for health conditions other than COVID-19—accommodations that Duke clearly developed during the pandemic. This discrepancy reveals that Duke does not have adequate accommodative measures for students who must miss class on the basis of personal health conditions, which students have dealt with even before the pandemic. All professors learned how to use new resources, such as Zoom, as a result of pandemic instruction changes. Therefore, Duke now has the opportunity to ameliorate its student health accommodations by expanding its new technological infrastructure. 

Devil’s advocacy: Why Duke Basketball is worth the hype and the hate

(02/16/22 5:00am)

Duke Men’s Basketball is undoubtedly central to Duke culture. When people think of Duke, they think of Cameron Indoor Stadium, the “GOAT” (Coach K), Christian Laettner and a famed basketball dynasty. The Cameron Crazies are inarguably one of the most spirited student sections in the history of college basketball; many students come to Duke to be a part of this unique community, and not a single non-Duke student can wrap their minds around the fact Duke students would sleep in tents for weeks during the depth of winter for a single game in March. But it seems that the love for Duke Men’s Basketball begins and ends with the Duke community. 

Anxieties and ambiguities: Duke’s 2022 COVID-19 policies

(02/08/22 5:08am)

Duke’s approach to the COVID-19 pandemic has raised a number of concerns among the student body and the Durham community. Many have criticized Duke’s strict measures to avoid the spread of disease in classrooms while also allowing popular events, such as basketball games, to continue. If Duke’s administration prioritizes attendance at these games over core academics in regard to its COVID-19 policies, what does that emphasis reveal about its attitude towards the Duke experience—which should presumably be focused on educational opportunity?

Share your opinion, join the Editorial Board!

(01/05/22 5:00am)

Student discourse is common on campus, but how often do you get to shape the very substance of this dialogue? Duke is home to an extremely diverse student body – in interests, political thought, race, etc –, but when can you interact with a truly diverse cross-section of these different populations? In 301 Flowers (or more recently, on their very own Zoom applications), a group of 10-15 students gather weekly to engage in lively discussions and write about issues pertinent to our student body. In these meetings, voices from across campus come together to confront any questions that arise regarding campus, local and national news. There are no limitations to what we can write about – articles topics have ranged from the fiscal responsibility of the University and pre-professionalism on campus to reflections about campus social life and commentary on political changes in Durham. We are the Community Editorial Board, The Chronicle’s independent student voice, and today, we invite you to join the discussion.

We have lost our way in the liberal arts

(11/25/21 5:00am)

Disability and Health Studies are often overlooked in higher education, and Duke is no exception. For years, the Duke Disability Alliance (DDA), along with students and faculty, have advocated the importance of integrating this discipline into Duke’s academic curriculum, in the form of a minor. The proposed creation of a new minor opens up an ongoing discussion on Duke’s campus: what fields of study merit their own department, major, minor, or certificate? Students have previously pushed for the creation of an Ethnic Studies department, an Urban Studies certificate program and an Asian American Studies program.

Getting into Duke isn’t good enough

(11/03/21 4:00am)

Getting into Duke is no easy task. With an overall acceptance rate of 5.8% for the Class of 2025, it’s quite an exclusive process. Unfortunately, Duke’s selective nature doesn’t end when you get into Duke. Social life on campus holds its own share of statistics. One third of students are involved with Greek Life, another third are active in selected living groups or living learning communities and the last third of students are considered independent – not a part of either social outlet. But what exactly do these statistics mean, and how do they translate to the social scene on a Friday night? 

Which quad did you live in?

(10/25/21 4:00am)

You met them the first week of school. Over marketplace meals, ping pong matches and learning how to use the Duke laundry machines, they became your closest friends. You thought they would last forever. And then, rush came. Within the matter of weeks, your freshman year dorm became irrelevant to the social scene. Freshman year ends and your friendships are never quite the same.