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“Challenge yourself. Change your world.”

DukeEngage can be life-changing.

How do you prepare for an experience that may be that significant for you? How do you prepare for if it isn’t?

How can you get ready for the unknown of the summer on which you’re about to embark?

How do you make sure you’re best-prepared to contribute in meaningful ways to the community in which you’ll be spending your summer?

We’ll help you sort through these questions — and many, many more — with structured pre-departure training and lots of links to resources (articles, movies, TED Talks, books, etc.).

Many of the communities with whom we partner have experienced historic marginalization and have identified areas in which they welcome the opportunity to work with you. The more prepared you are, the more you’ll get out of the experience and the more you’ll be able contribute to the work of your community partner.

All participants attend pre-departure meetings to receive valuable information about the culture and context of their specific DukeEngage program. These required meetings are the best way to prepare yourself for your specific program.

You may also complete online modules that will overview ethical issues you might encounter, how to budget your stipend, ways to keep yourself healthy and safe and more.

You will also receive crucial training for your experience by participating in the Fortin Foundation DukeEngage Academy.

Each of our programs, in the U.S. and abroad, offers unique opportunities to understand social, economic, and cultural differences. Some differences will be more visible and others will be more subtle. These pre-departure training events provide you with the tools to approach your engagement thoughtfully, no matter where you serve.


At DukeEngage Registration, you will submit completed paperwork and learn more about your travel arrangements. You may also apply for a visa, if needed, or set up an appointment with Student Health.

Typically, registration is open most of the day for a two-day period, so you can drop by when it fits into your class schedule.

Registration takes place in our offices in the West Duke Building. You’ll rotate through stations and our staff will assist you with each step to make sure everything is in order.

Pre-departure Meetings

DukeEngage faculty leaders facilitate a minimum of two program-specific meetings during the spring semester that DukeEngage participants are required to attend. Group meetings often focus on setting context for the program – building group dynamics, teaching technical skills, and discussing the culture and communities of partner sites. Many program leaders incorporate readings, film, and activities. Students are encouraged to bring their program/site-specific questions to these meetings.