2019 was a year of change for DukeEngage. Five new programs launched or returned, including our first-ever group programs in Chicago and Puerto Rico. The upward trend in applications to US-based programs continued, with a 10 percent increase over 2018. In fact, our DC, Puerto Rico, and New Orleans programs received the most applications overall.
In spring 2019, Eric Mlyn, the Peter Lange Executive Director of DukeEngage, announced he was stepping down from the program he led for more than a decade. In May, he led his final Fortin Foundation DukeEngage Academy, sharing his takeaways, lessons learned, and favorite memories before sending 398 DukeEngagers into the world to participate in 36 group programs and 22 independent projects.
In July, DukeEngage officially became an affiliated program of the Kenan Institute for Ethics, with the goal of strengthening the program’s connection to faculty and the curriculum. At this time, longtime DukeEngage-Togo program leader Charlie Piot was named the Peter Lange Faculty Director of DukeEngage and Inga Peterson was hired as the Associate Director of Operations.
While all this was happening in Durham, our DukeEngage students were making change of their own around the globe. They were creating apps in Cape Town to provide on-demand counseling for trauma support. They were developing nutrition plans and providing farm-grown meals for hospital patients in Rwanda to expedite recovery. They were teaching STEM classes in California, advocating for immigrants in Arizona, and planting trees in Costa Rica.
Of course, this next chapter of DukeEngage would not be possible without our program leaders, community partners, and generous donors who support every aspect of the DukeEngage experience. That's why we wanted to share this snapshot of 2019 with you: to show the tremendous impact that your support has on DukeEngage. Thank you!
by the numbers
laying the groundwork
On May 7-8, 2019, more than 500 students, faculty, staff, program directors, site coordinators, and community partners gathered for the largest civic engagement conference of its kind: the Fortin Foundation DukeEngage Academy. The immersive two-day training included an opening plenary by Gary Bennett, Duke's vice provost of undergraduate education. He encouraged DukeEngage participants to not only find their passion but to embrace their purpose.