Buildings and Grounds Magazine Articles

February 26, 2020

We are now approaching the 100th anniversary of the founding of Duke University in 1924. As we celebrate this milestone, it’s worth reflecting on how we came to have our two distinctive and beautiful campuses—and how different they could have looked.

February 26, 2020


Corbie Hill

PALE SMOKE seeps from holes in the roof of 1915 Yearby Avenue. Minuscule flames lick the eaves tentatively, cautiously, like swimmers dipping their toes in cold seawater. Firefighters from the Durham Fire Department stand by their trucks. They’re waiting for the fire to grow before they go in.

Image of Central Campus construction, 1973

November 19, 2019

In May, students moved out of their Central Campus apartments for the last time. The buildings are now being razed, and the future of Central Campus is uncertain. Over its nearly forty-five-year lifespan as part of our university, the Central Campus apartments remained the same, but the vision for what they could be changed as the years passed.

July 18, 2014

Each April, as the azaleas come into bloom, thousands of Duke alumni return to campus for Reunions Weekend, and I greet them with the words, “Welcome home.” But why do we think of college as a home? In many countries this is not the case: There, people feel a lifelong allegiance to their secondary schools and strike a more pragmatic, businesslike relationship with their universities.

Recreation & Physical Education (Rec&PE) Department logo

November 19, 2013


As a high-school athlete, Parker Poliakoff ’14 played football, lacrosse, and golf, rowed crew, and was a nationally ranked wrestler who hoped for a walk-on position with the Blue Devils. But when back and knee injuries put a damper on his varsity aspirations, Poliakoff was forced to regroup.

Duke Kunshan

November 12, 2013


More than 800 students from China enrolled at Duke last year, a clear indication of the university’s popularity in the nation. Now, after gaining the approval of the Ministry of Education, Duke will have a formal home in the country.