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When we consider highlights of our first 10 years, we feel grateful that DukeEngage has been embraced so readily within the Duke University community and by our partners in service worldwide. Below are significant milestones in the life of DukeEngage dating back to 2007.


  • Duke commits to the development of a large-scale, fully-funded civic engagement pro­gram open to any university undergraduate.


  • The Duke Endowment and The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation each donate $15 million to provide an initial endowment of $30 million to fund the initiative, soon to be called DukeEngage.


  • Dr. Eric Mlyn named executive director of DukeEngage.


  • DukeEngage launches projects for 89 Duke students who serve communities in the U.S., Kenya, Yemen, Tanzania and India.


  • DukeEngage completes its first official year, placing roughly 350 students in service through 30 group programs and almost 100 indepen­dent projects.
  • High-level success metrics established, alongside a full-time commitment to data-driven evaluation and assessment practices.


  • DukeEngage tops the list of rea­sons prospective students give for applying to Duke.
  • The DukeEngage Academy, which provides pre-departure workshops and seminars for participants, is established, marking the creation of the largest university-based civic engagement train­ing program in the United States.


  • DukeEngage reaches an enroll­ment milestone of 1,000 Duke student participants. Annual enrollment target jumps to 425.


  • DukeEngage receives the Higher Education Civic Engagement Award from the Wash­ington Center.

FALL 2011

  • Fulfilling its commitment to connect DukeEngage to the curriculum, more than 40% of pro­grams have a faculty leader or academic department connection.


  • DukeEngage reaches an enroll­ment milestone of 2,000 Duke student participants. The total number of volunteer service hours contrib­uted by students exceeds 640,000.
  • New donor gifts to DukeEngage since 2007 exceed $5 million.

FALL 2012

  • A year-long strategic planning process culminates with “DukeEngage 2017: A Blueprint for Deeper and Broader Engagement.”
  • Duke launches Civic Engagement Focus Cluster for first-year students. DukeEngage executive director, Dr. Eric Mlyn, directs the cluster and teaches a course as part of the program.


  • DukeEngage receives anonymous $4 million gift in honor of former Provost Peter Lange to endow a named DukeEngage directorship.
  • Duke University Arts and Sciences Council Committee on Curriculum approves the experiential certificate option for students to connect experiences like DukeEngage to their courses.


  • DukeEngage hires first Faculty Fellow to initiate faculty collaboration with programs executed by Volunteer Sending Organizations.

FALL 2013

  • DukeEngage Faculty Planning Task Force issues a report that recommends DukeEngage “align and connect its programs with major initiatives, e.g., Bass Connections, Institutes, Schools, Centers, and other academic units across the university.” Recommendations support existing goals in “DukeEngage 2017: A Blueprint for Deeper and Broader Engagement.”
  • DukeEngage consolidates administrative tasks in “HUB” shared with the Duke Office of Global Education.

FALL 2014

  • DukeEngage conducts first comprehensive alumni survey and report to assess programmatic impacts and outcomes.


  • DukeEngage hosts first Community Partner Conference in conjunction with hosting the bi-annual International Service Learning Summit. The Community Partner Conference brings representatives from 30 organizations in the U.S. and abroad with whom our DukeEngage students work.


  • DukeEngage surpasses an enroll­ment milestone of 3,000 Duke student participants. The total number of volunteer service hours contrib­uted by students exceeds 1,000,000 and is recognized with a “Thanks a Million” celebration.

FALL 2015

  • Duke University Arts and Sciences Council Committee on Curriculum approves new experiential certificate in Civic Engagement and Social Change.

FALL 2016

  • Doing Development in West Africa: A Reader by and for Undergraduates is published. The book, comprised of articles written by participants of the DukeEngage in Togo program, is edited by Prof. Charles Piot, the program’s faculty leader.


  • DukeEngage celebrates 10 years of service around the world. During a decade of DukeEngage, more than 4,000 students have volunteered more than 1.25 million hours alongside more than 600 community partners in 37 U.S. cities and in 79 nations on six continents.