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Diversity at Duke?

TothepointeTothepointe Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
edited April 2013 in Duke University
So I got into Duke RD, and I went to this thing called the BSAi weekend, where it was basically a Black/African American look into Duke. While there though, I couldn't help noticing that some groups, particularly the black and the white students, kind of hung in different circles. That's not to say I noticed animosity, everyone, regardless of race, was really friendly to each other, but there was definitely division.

I got into Rice and 5 other schools as well, and Rice is about just as diverse on paper as Duke, but I feel the diversity there is a lot better because everyone seems to mix with everyone. So the only thing stopping me from saying yes to Duke is this fear of a lack of integrated diversity.

People kept telling me "oh you can make other friends, but you just have to reach out and not be so closed off". I understand that, but at the school I go to now and Rice it just seemed like making friends just happens. There's no active looking at race and color or active seeking out for "diverse" friends. I need that I think.

I was also planning on going to Duke Blue Devil Days to see if I saw a difference but is it even worth my time if I'm going to find the same thing?

Is this really the case? Or was it just because of the weekend I went to?
Post edited by Tothepointe on

Replies to: Diversity at Duke?

  • Duke2015erDuke2015er Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
    Hey Tothepointe! I'm a current Duke student now, and I can give you the real deal. To be honest, BSAI is a bit of a different atmosphere than normal, because the week is focused on Black students. As someone who is not only African-American, but also in a majority white fraternity, I can tell you Duke is integrated between students. But, as you'll see at other schools it can be hard as a Black student to look around and feel like there is no community made up of people like you. So, BSAI is there to show you that there is a place that you can go to feel connected with other Black students if you want. This doesn't mean that the groups you saw that were predominately Black never mix with other groups, because your social scene is what you want it to be. It would almost be impossible NOT to mix and mingle with other groups, no matter the race, gender, socio-economic status, etc just off the fact that Freshman year everyone lives on the same campus, eats dinner in the same hall, and make a ton of memories with all the shenanigans we all get into living in dorms together. So trust me, you have NOTHING to worry about! And I think coming to BDD would show you what I mean. :)
  • slik nikslik nik Registered User Posts: 1,083 Senior Member
    I'm a Duke senior who spent his first year at Rice University (transferred for Duke's environmental sciences program), and your observations are pretty accurate based on my experience. Both are racially/ethnically diverse schools, but at Rice, I found that there is more interactions between students from diverse backgrounds. That's not to say you can't find a diverse group of friends at Duke; I've been able to create a diverse circle and my fraternity is quite diverse (although we are one of the few that are diverse), but it definitely takes more effort than it would at Rice because the residential college system automatically surrounds you with diverse groups of individuals. Duke is a great place, but I found the social scene superior at Rice. If you have more questions about how Duke compares with Rice, PM me. Good luck with your decision!
  • patriotsfan1patriotsfan1 Registered User Posts: 1,162 Senior Member
    Well frats SLGs sports and freshmen dorms provide you with a diverse array of students. All the frats have people of different races, the SLGs are pretty mixed too.
  • TothepointeTothepointe Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    I hear where you all are saying but you all mentioned fraternities. Is joining a frat that integral to making friends at Duke?
  • patriotsfan1patriotsfan1 Registered User Posts: 1,162 Senior Member
    No. There are things called Selective Living Groups which focus on other aspects such as academics or just low key social groups. A lot of people will join a SLG or a frat, but people can have friends without joining them, it's just that the social scene won be as much partying as clubbing.
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