About the BN Duke Scholarship Program
Benjamin N. Duke Scholars strive to excel academically and to serve as leaders of civic engagement initiatives both on and off campus. We work collaboratively to build creative partnerships with communities in the Carolinas and beyond. We endeavor to be globally minded and locally grounded while acting as ambassadors representing the Carolinas and Duke University. We engage in critical introspection regarding our ideas and experiences in order to better understand the world and improve our work.
Who We Are
B.N. Duke Scholars are students from North and South Carolina who excel academically, engage their communities, and aspire to become leaders at Duke and beyond.
What We Do
The Benjamin N. Duke program brings outstanding students from the Carolinas to Duke University in order to foster appreciation, mutual respect, and connection between the scholars and the people of North and South Carolina.
The program is named in honor of Benjamin N. Duke, a respected leader, businessman, and philanthropist, who wanted to ensure Duke University retained its Carolina heritage by supporting students from the Carolinas. As he built his fortune through various business ventures, he also became one of the biggest benefactors to Trinity College, which later became Duke University. For several years, beginning in 1892, Benjamin N. Duke provided scholarships to Trinity College for students from North Carolina in hopes that the education would help students “think for themselves and become leaders in the highest and best things in life.”
The Benjamin N. Duke Scholars Program provides eight semesters of full tuition, room and board, and mandatory fees to Duke University. Scholars also have access to generous funding for domestic and international summer experiences.
All first-year scholars participate in a first-year seminar series across scholarships to engage with each other as scholars, learn from scholars on and off campus, and engage with the greater Durham community. In the spring, the first year students prepare for the Carolina Summer of Service through readings and informal discussions about service. Additional programming, trainings, and community building opportunities are offered to all B. N. Duke Scholars throughout the academic year.
In addition to monetary support, dedicated faculty and staff help the scholars reach new academic heights and tackle real world problems with innovative, interdisciplinary, compassionate, and sustainable approaches. B. N. Duke Scholars emerge from their experience at Duke as leaders, problem solvers, and members of an extensive community that spreads across the Carolinas and beyond.
B. N. Duke Scholars receive additional funding to support service projects during their time at Duke. Through the summer programs and other community engagement projects they complete over the course of their academic careers, B. N. Duke Scholars develop an understanding of what it means to partner with people rather than work for people; they learn to listen first and then speak; they ground themselves locally in the Carolinas even as they engage communities in the broader world.
The B. N. Duke Community
On campus, B. N. Scholars support and challenge one another. B. N. Duke Scholars have many ways of building community. Scholars work together in many organizations at Duke and in Durham, drawing on the strength of the B. N. Duke Community to support their service and leadership efforts. When B. N. Scholars travel abroad, they often call upon the global network of scholars and alumni to make connections, gain wisdom, and enhance their travel and service experiences.