In Brief: March-April 2007

April 1, 2007
  • Emily Rotberg, a senior, has been awarded one of twelve scholarships from the Overseas Press Club Foundation. The scholarship, which includes a $2,000 cash award and a weekend in New York, recognizes aspiring foreign correspondents at American colleges and universities.
  • Clay Taliaferro, professor of the practice of dance, will retire at the end of the spring 2007 semester after twenty years of dancing, choreographing, and teaching at Duke. He has been awarded professor emeritus standing upon retirement, and the dance program plans to establish a scholarship or prize in his name.
  • R. Sanders Williams M.D. ’74, dean of the Duke medical school, has been appointed to the newly created position of senior vice chancellor for academic affairs. Williams will continue to serve as medical-school dean until a new dean has been identified through a search process that is now under way. Williams will also retain his title as dean of the Duke-National University of Singapore Graduate Medical School through the end of the 2007-08 academic year. The new dean of each school will report directly to Williams.
  • After months of controversy, the Durham City Council in January rezoned more than 128 acres on Duke’s Central Campus to make way for a large-scale redevelopment. Detailed site plans must be approved before construction can begin.
  • Duke-National University of Singapore Graduate Medical School (GMS), a collaboration between Duke and the National University of Singapore established in 2005, has received a gift of $80 million from the estate of Tan Sri Khoo Teck Puat. The gift, which will be matched by the government of Singapore for a total of $160 million, will help strengthen the school’s planned research programs, which focus on medical and health-care problems of significance to Singapore and Asia. Duke’s board of trustees announced that graduates of the school’s four-year program will be awarded a joint degree from Duke and the National University of Singapore.
  • Seniors Chloe Chien and Andrew Longenecker were named “second team” members of USA Today’s All USA College Academic Team. Joseph Babcock, also a senior, was named to the third team.
  • Richard G. Newell, an award-winning environmental economist widely cited for his work on the economics of climate change and energy, has joined the Nicholas School as the first Gendell Associate Professor of Energy and Environmental Economics.
  • The board of trustees approved a 4.5 percent tuition increase for undergraduate students for the upcoming academic year. Tuition for students enrolled in Trinity College of Arts and Sciences and the Pratt School of Engineering will be $34,335 for 2007-08, up from $32,845 in 2006-07. The total cost of attending Duke, including room and board, will be $45,121, an increase of 4.6 percent. Tuition rates for the graduate and professional schools will rise between 4.3 percent, for the Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences, and 14.6 percent, for the School of Nursing. The proposed nursing school increase will put it more in line with tuition charged at peer schools, Provost Peter Lange says.
  • The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will contribute $10 million to Duke to support scholarships for undergraduates and business-school students. The gift will provide $9 million in endowment to support need-based undergraduate scholarships and $1 million in endowment for scholarships for the Fuqua School of Business. The gift brings the total Duke has raised during its Financial Aid Initiative to $216 million. Melinda French Gates ’86, M.B.A. ’87 is a former member of Duke’s board of trustees.