Duke 2015-2016 News Wrap Up

In case you spent all semester isolated in 4th floor Perk

True Blue | Brett Finkelstein | April 19, 2016

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Here’s your year-long cheat sheet amidst all the finals study guides of what’s been happening on our college campus. In no particular order…

Where else to start than with basketball? Unfortunately, we are no longer the reigning NCAA champions after our 2015 win, but we do have 5 banners hanging in Cameron Indoor. We had a strong run into the Sweet 16, but unfortunately lost to Oregon, 68-82. It was an eventful season nevertheless, even with some other not so great  moments that made us nervous for the reputation of our team leader this year, Grayson Allen. Luckily, we can all look forward to next year. First, that’s because our Allen is coming back and ready to lead the team as an upperclassman. Unfortunately, the whole team won’t be back though. Our third and final Plumlee is graduating, and Brandon Ingram, Derryck Thornton, Azura Stevens and Angela Salvadores are leaving too. Luckily, that’s matched with 2 new top recruits joining the team, Jayson Tatum and Frank Jackson. We can’t forget Harry Giles, though his recent injury is making some people nervous. Oh, and Coach K had knee surgery. Next year looks like a big year for the Men’s Basketball team we know and love. Big run for the NCAA tourney? That comes with rumors about how many years Coach K has left, but we’re not going to think about that just yet.

On a sports note, we also recognized the 10 year anniversary this March of the off-campus lacrosse party that sparked the infamous scandal and trial. It’s important to look back, realize the effect it has had on our campus culture, and look forward to the future learning from our school’s shared history.

Nevertheless, there are still some things happening now on our campus we’re not so proud of. A homophobic death threat was written on a freshman’s residential hall wall: “death to all fags”. It directly referenced the gay student by name, and sparked many responses. A rally was hosted by Duke’s LGBT student group Blue Devils United, The Washington Post covered the story in a personal interview, and brought our administration into the spotlight in this story that honestly is best told by Jack himself.

Speaking of administrative scandal, some famous spots on campus reversed back in the alphabet and students moved from basketball’s K-Ville to the Allen building’s A-Ville in April. This concerned the 2014 incident involving Executive Vice President Tallman Trask III resulting in the occupation of Duke’s Allen Building, which houses many of Duke’s top administrators. With a list of demands and a call for solidarity, students occupied the building and camped out on the quad, their efforts teetering off once administration claimed they were “done with demands.” Despite this, the campsite has still stayed up. More updates to come…

But something the administration can boast about is Duke’s ranking in the most recent US News & World Report on the best colleges, which was released in September 2015. Later this school year, after early decision application received their admission notifications in December, and regular decision received theirs in March, Duke gained even more academic attention given the acceptance rate and admission stats. The class of 2020 is made up of an application pool that received these admission notifications with acceptance rates at a record low. For early decision the rate was 23.5%, matched with a staggering 8.7% for regular decision. So, for the majority of you reading this and feeling a little less-confident in your academic abilities as we head into finals, just think about all of the new and even more competitive students who will be joining us next fall! Shit.

And what else has come down in addition to these acceptance rates…THE CRANE! There’s still construction, construction and more construction on our campus, but that ugly site ruining everyone’s Instagrams of the Duke Chapel has graduated like the seniors (happy for the former, sad for the latter). That removal looked really good for all the springtime tours and Blue Devil Days, especially with some A-Ville tents and student activism with a side of construction workers and blue tarps.

AND OMG WE CAN WALK ON THE PLAZA! The West Union is coming, as with lots of new vendors on Duke’s campus. Moral of the story: Duke administration really wants you to buy food through them. Because $.

Speaking of money, a 3.8% tuition fee increase was announced for the 2016-2017 academic year. This raises the undergraduate cost of tuition here to a total of $65,703, and this increase was met with other tuition fee increases for graduate schools as well. Damn.

Guess it’s time to start our countdown for the fall of 2016. Durham, stay dirty this summer. We will miss you. Until then, we’ll probs just be reliving the glory days of this 2015-2016 school year by back-stalking pictures of ourselves on Facebook. Be back soon for something more newsworthy than our yester-year’s Facebook news feed.