Nakayama Public Service Scholars Program

The Nakayama Scholars

The Nakayama family endowed the Nakayama Public Service Scholarship to support students interested in responding to the world’s challenges through careers in public service. The inaugural class of Scholars will be seniors in Fall 2021–Spring 2022.

A Note from Nakayama Scholarship Director, Chris Simmons

I am delighted to introduce the Nakayama Public Service Scholarship.

The Nakayama family created an endowment specifically to support highly motivated students who want to work on our world’s challenging problems by engaging in public service careers (defined as careers in organizations that end in .edu, .gov, .mil or .org). This is the only Duke-funded merit scholarship that currently enrolled students may apply directly for in their junior year. The scholarship will cover one half of the scholars’ tuition in their senior year (2 semesters). We plan to choose six students this year to make up the inaugural cohort.

This fall, President Vincent Price said, “Our students, faculty, and staff are directly engaged in improving lives and communities in our region and around the world, demonstrating real leadership in the policy field.” The Nakayama Public Service Scholarship is an important investment in further promotion of this endeavor for some of our most driven students headed into lives of such engagement.

In addition to the monetary award, the selected cohort of scholars will engage with Duke faculty and public servants in a variety of fields for mentorship and career exploration. The activities and engagement will be driven by the interests and aspirations of each year’s selected scholars.

The distinguished board of directors and I look forward to working with the inaugural class of Nakayama Scholars as they prepare for their careers using their Duke education in service to society.

The Nakayama Program

Nakayama Scholars are exceptional students with stellar academics, leadership, and a commitment to a career in public service. Learn more.

Our Selection Process

Gothic Architecture

The Nakayama Public Service Scholarship is awarded on the basis of stellar academics; leadership (students have seen problems, gathered others to make change, and made a demonstrable impact on their communities); and a commitment to a career in public service. The scholarship is open to all Duke students regardless of citizenship. Scholars will be expected to be in residence at Duke for both semesters of their senior year. Learn more.

Current Scholars and Staff

A community of scholars, an intellectual hub

Meyer Red Bridge

The Nakayama Public Service Scholars Program is located within the Office of University Scholars and Fellows (OUSF) at Duke. OUSF and the Director of Nationally Competitive Scholarships, Babs Wise, as well as the Nakayama Advisory Board, provide full support for the Nakayama Scholars program through services such as student advising and mentorship. Our scholars are part of a larger community of merit scholars and academically engaged students at Duke University. Learn more.