Campus briefs

Feb. 24, 2014 @ 09:51 AM


- Wanda Fleming Lester has been named interim dean of the N.C. Central University School of Business and began serving in that NCCU role Feb. 17. She has more than 15 years of experience in higher education. Most recently, Lester served as vice provost for academic affairs and undergraduate programs at N.C. A&T State University. NCCU will form a search committee and start a national search for the next business school dean.


- Duke master of science in global health student Junjian Gaoshan was one of six individuals from around the world selected for the Youth Advocacy Group, a part of the United Nations Secretary General’s Global Education First Initiative. The group of youth advocates is charged with strengthening momentum for the initiative and lead the charge to get every child, everywhere, into school and learning. 

-   Leadership Triangle announced the commencement of the 2014 College Edition Class, presented by Research Triangle Park. The following Durham residents were selected to participate in this year’s College Edition Class: Andrew McCrae of Durham Technical Community College and Tom Vosburgh of Duke University. Program participants will work on developing personal leadership skills and learn about regional issues that impact communities throughout the Triangle.


- The following local students were named to fall dean's list at Arizona State University: Katherine Field of Durham and Nicholas Marek of Chapel Hill.


Friendly Competition

The Duke and UNC Habitat for Humanity chapters are competing to see who can raise the most money for house building materials. Duke Habitat for Humanity is building and sponsoring a house right now on Chapel Hill Road in Durham, and UNC’s chapter is funding a house to be built in Phoenix Place neighborhood in Chapel Hill.

Visakha Suresh, a Duke biomedical engineering and biology senior, said she has been involved with Habitat for Humanity since high school. She is now senior co-president of the Duke chapter and helps raise money for the tools and lumber they need for their construction sites.

Now, on top of conducting bake sales and writing grants, her chapter is tapping into the competitive spirit to help pay for the average $50,000 cost for each Habitat house.

“In the end, there’s no real winning or losing because both chapters benefit,” Suresh said.

As of Friday, Duke raised $170 and UNC raised $65 of their $10,000 goals. Visit to help. The competition will extend to the March 8 basketball rematch between the universities.



WEDNESDAY: UNC-Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment, Center for Sustainable Enterprise, and the Kenan-Flagler Business School is partnering with the Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster to host a Clean Tech Summit. For information, visit | Friday Center, 100 Friday Center Drive, Chapel Hill


WEDNESDAY: As the campaign season ramps up ahead of April's presidential elections in Afghanistan, a panel of experts will assess the political, security, and humanitarian situation; the U.S. relationship with Afghanistan; and the overall implications of the planned pullout of troops later in 2014. Wall Street Journal reporter Nathan Hodge, based in Kabul, will update the panel and audience with the latest news from Afghanistan (via Skype). Jayne Huckerby, associate clinical law professor at Duke, most recently a human rights adviser to UN Women, will discuss the issues around the rollback of women's rights prior to the U.S. withdrawal and the failure of the international community to address this. Emeritus religion professor Bruce Lawrence, who's been following developments in Afghanistan since the 1970s, will moderate the discussion and give his insights into Afghan's future. | noon - 1 p.m.; John Hope Franklin Center, 2204 Erwin Road, Durham


THURSDAY: The UNC Writing for the Screen and Stage Program presents “Queer Drama,” a panel discussion with LGBTQ writers from film, TV and theater. | 7 p.m.; room 9, Fred Brooks Building, Sitterson Hall, 201 S. Columbia St., UNC-Chapel Hill


SATURDAY: The Duke Institute for Brain Sciences presents its sixth annual Brain Awareness Week. People of all ages are invited to learn about human brains, neuroimaging, decision-making, activities for kids and more. | 1 to 4 p.m.; Levine Science Research Center Hall of Science, 308 Research Drive, Durham