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Duke MEM Orientation (Aug 16 -20, 2021)

Hello Incoming MEMers,

I hope this email finds each of you well, we’re busy here at Duke getting prepared for your arrival! An important piece of your arrival to Duke and onboarding to the Master of Engineering Management program is the week-long programming called New Student Orientation.

By now, you should be making your way through the resources and video overviews in Orientation Part 1 (link to content).

New Student Orientation

New student orientation will continue with Orientation Part 2 hosted Monday, August 16 – Friday, August, 20. Content will be delivered in two formats:

  • REQUIRED sessions (link to schedule) will be held on zoom. All new students must participate. These sessions are designed to help you be prepared and successful during your time with MEM.
  • OPTIONAL sessions (link to schedule) will be held in-person, on campus. These sessions are designed to build community and a chance to meet your fellow classmates. If you are unable to attend or choose not to, you will not be held at a disadvantage. These are simply complimentary events to the required zoom sessions. All new students are invited, but given the circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic you must meet the following requirements to be eligible:
    1. Completed an entry COVID test with Duke (we ask that you test as early as possible and preferably 48 hours prior to attending your first orientation session)
    2. Have an active DukeCard to access the building
    3. We strongly encourage at least partially vaccinated status
    4. Mask required in all indoor space

Orientation Pre-Assignments

Some sessions during orientation will require pre-assignments. Pre-assignment means you must complete the assignment PRIOR to the session. These sessions are:

  • Clifton StrengthsFinder by Dr. La Tondra Murray (Email with directions will be sent to your Duke email by August 9)
  • Case Study Methodology by Luis Morales (Please read this case prior to the session on August 16)
  • In-person COVID related requirements: vaccination, entry COVID test / appt schedule , active DukeCard

You can also find all this information and more on the MEM Student Resources Site!

We look forward to welcoming you to Duke in two weeks!


Carolyn Gilbert

Fall COVID-19 Entry Testing Instructions and Vaccine Expectations

Good morning/afternoon,

We look forward to welcoming you to campus soon for the start of the fall semester. We are writing today to outline what you can expect related to COVID-19 entry testing and other testing protocols this semester.

Entry Testing

All Duke students must complete an entry test for COVID-19 prior to the Fall 2021 semester. Entry testing will be by appointment only through August 23 (with walk-in testing available after that day); all students should sign up for an entry testing slot, which you can do here. (If you are able, please sign up for a timeslot the week of August 9. We anticipate the week of August 16 to be our busiest.)

Entry testing will be available in Penn Pavilion on West Campus, most Mondays through Fridays in August between 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. EST. Shortly before your test date, you will be emailed a parking pass for the Card Lot, which you can use while you are being tested in Penn Pavilion. Per the recent university announcement, please bring a mask to your entry test.

You will only be notified of your test result if you test positive for COVID-19. Put another way, no news is good news.

Once you have completed your entry test, you will enter Duke’s surveillance testing program for the remainder of the fall semester. 


If you have not yet received your COVID-19 vaccination or do not have an approved medical or religious exemption, you’ll be directed to check in with Student Health. 

Students have until Monday, August 23 to complete the university’s vaccination requirement. Failure to do so may result in the revocation of your campus access. More information about the vaccination requirement and how to update your vaccination status can be found at the Duke COVID vaccine website. 

Surveillance Testing

After entry testing is complete, all students will participate in Duke’s surveillance testing program this fall, which helps us monitor any transmission of the virus within the Duke community. The frequency of how often you’re called in for testing will depend on a number of factors, including your vaccination status and whether you’ve been potentially exposed to the virus. Most graduate and professional students can expect to be called for surveillance testing once per week. Students who have approved medical or religious exemptions can expect to be tested more frequently. 

Like entry testing, you’ll only be notified of your result if you test positive for COVID-19. If you don’t hear anything, that means your test was negative. 

You can find more information on surveillance testing, including hours and locations, on the Duke United website. If you have additional questions, connect with your school’s designated contact person

Get your Mobile DukeCard 

If you’re new to campus, your first DukeCard will be on your iPhone or Android device. First, please visit the DukeCard website for photo specs and instructions to upload your photo online. Due to the current global chip shortage, we are asking students to “go mobile” if possible unless a physical card is needed. Once your photo has been approved and you have completed entry testing, as outlined above, you can add your DukeCard to your iPhone or Android device. Detailed instructions are available on the mobile DukeCard site. 

If you need a physical DukeCard in addition to the mobile DukeCard, you can visit the DukeCard office to obtain one. Instructions for setting up an appointment can be found on the DukeCard appointment site

As a reminder, all plans, processes, and guidelines–including testing processes, masking, and other protocols–remain subject to change based on the continually evolving pandemic landscape. Be sure to check out Duke’s COVID-19 website for information and updates. Thank you for your continued partnership in helping keep the Duke and Durham communities safer. We look forward to seeing you on campus this fall. 

Best Regards,                                                                  

Brad Fox                                                                                                      Shundrell Spann

Associate Dean, Masters Programs                                                                        Staff Assistant

Duke Community Standards

Dear Incoming MEM Students,

I hope you are having a good summer. We are busy preparing for the fall semester and are excited to welcome you to the Duke and MEM community soon. I know that you are getting a variety of e-mails from us in preparation for the fall, and I am writing today to share important information about some specific expectations we have of each individual who is part of this special community.

Our core beliefs are outlined in Professionalism and the 5 Principles: These principles, developed by our faculty and then refined by our students, represent the behaviors we expect of our students and graduates. Additionally, Duke University’s Community Standard outlines our expectation for students to act honorably in all of their endeavors: It is important to review and follow these expectations, which begin from the day you apply to Duke and last throughout your time at Duke. It is also important to note that these expectations exist on Duke’s campus, off Duke’s campus, and online.  We pride ourselves on reinforcing these behaviors because we believe upholding them helps make Duke a welcoming environment for all students to study, grow and thrive.

In today’s email I want to highlight a specific aspect of Duke’s expectations that is vital to the formation of a community of scholars where everyone feels safe and respected. Please be aware that Duke University prohibits sexual harassment, which includes sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, dating/relationship violence and retaliation for reporting inappropriate behavior. If you are unfamiliar with Duke’s expectations, please see the website Note that Duke’s prohibited behavior is broader than what may be viewed as criminal behavior.  For example, unwelcome conduct based on sex or gender that creates a hostile learning environment is sexual or gender-based misconduct. The consequences for the prohibited behaviors include expulsion, suspension, revocation of admission, disciplinary probation, recommended counseling, and/or other educational sanctions.

If you or someone you know has experienced inappropriate conduct, Duke offers the option to do one or both of the following:

  • Talk with confidential resources that can provide free counseling, information, and support. These resources include:
  • The Office of Gender Violence Prevention & Intervention (GPVI) in the Duke University Women’s Center
  • Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)
  • Blue Devils Care
  • Student Health
  • Clergy from Religious Life
  • Student ombudsperson
  • Report the inappropriate behavior to a university representative. Please note that the resources below are not confidential resources.  These individuals are Responsible Employees and they are required to report your concerns to OIE.

You may report your concerns to:

You are welcome to report concerns anonymously to OIE.  Making a report does not mean the university will automatically launch an investigation in most situations. OIE is available to answer questions regarding the reporting process, which can be found here:


You may also file a report with Duke University Police (919-684-2444) or the appropriate law enforcement agency.


If you want additional information regarding resources, it may be found here:


This note covers topics that are very important to us. Our goal is to provide each of you with an environment that gives you the opportunity to learn and grow, and we appreciate your partnership in knowing and following Duke’s community expectations. If you have any questions about Duke or MEM policies regarding sexual harassment, standards of conduct, or other expectations for professional behavior, please do not hesitate to contact me.


I look forward to seeing you in the fall.


Best Regards,



Brad Fox, Ph.D.

Associate Dean, Masters Programs

Pratt School of Engineering, Duke University

3405A Fitzpatrick Center (101 Science Drive), Box 90271

Durham, NC 27708-0271

tel (919)660-5516

fax (919)668-2888

Master of Engineering Management Program (

Master of Engineering Program (

Master of Science Programs (


July 14 Update on Visas for International Students

This message is sent on behalf of Sally Kornbluth, Provost and Jennifer Francis, Executive Provost:

July 14, 2020

Dear international students,

We are writing to share the great news that the U.S. Government has rescinded the directives on visas announced last week that would have affected many international students.

This development means that at this time, F-1 visa holders will continue to operate under the SEVIS guidance issued on March 9, which permitted students to remain in the United States regardless of whether they are enrolled in in-person, online or hybrid courses. F-1 visa holders continuing their studies online from abroad will remain active in the SEVIS system.

As you know, Duke vigorously opposed and advocated against the now-rescinded directives and joined an amicus brief in support of the lawsuit filed by Harvard and MIT. We’re also grateful to our legal and government relations teams, the large number of Duke students who mobilized to oppose the directives, as well as the national business community, faith leaders and the 17 states which filed suit to block the rules for joining in solidarity with international students and higher education.

We know this situation has caused a great deal of uncertainty and stress for you and your families. We want to restate our continued commitment to international students and your ability to pursue your studies and research at Duke. If you have specific visa-related questions, please contact Duke Visa Services for more information. Duke’s International House is also available to provide a range of support services for international students.

Please continue to consult the Keep Learning website for regular updates regarding the fall semester.


Sally Kornbluth, Provost
Jennifer Francis, Executive Vice Provost

Returning Student Update (July 2020)

Dear MEM Students,

I hope you are doing well this summer. Our MEM team has been working hard all summer in preparation for the fall semester and we wanted to provide you with an update for the MEM program.

First, please make sure to read Duke’s official updates for students As President Price has mentioned, Fall 2020 will not look like Fall 2019 and so we wanted to talk about some of the changes. It is also important to know that Duke and MEM plans will continue to evolve; we are practicing our flexibility in planning and we ask for your flexibly too as the plan may change once (or twice) more as we get closer to August 17.

Academic Programming

  • Fall 2020 semester is Aug 17 – Nov 24, 2020
  • All student course registrations have been deleted. The new bookbagging will begin July 27 and registration will begin Aug 3.
  • Fall 2020 courses will be offered online or a combination of in-person and online.  Here is our current best guess on the delivery method for our classes:
    • Online classes
      • EGRMGMT          510 MARKETING
      • EGRMGMT          540 MGMT OF HIGH TECH *this course was left off the original email in error
    • In-person and online classes
      • EGRMGMT          580 DECISION MODELS
  • Based on the recent SEVP modifications, international students on an F-1 visa, must take at least 1 class in-person and if a course is offered in-person, it  must be taken in person.
  • Fuqua courses – Fuqua’s academic calendar now differs substantially from ours. Currently, we do not have information on the registration timeline or process. Once we have the details, we will share this information with you.

Academic Questions

  • MEM is both excited and sad to announce that Tracie Foust has taken a promotion to the Duke Divinity School! While it is a tremendous opportunity for Tracie, we were very sad to see her leave, as I’m sure many of you will feel the same. We are currently interviewing for a new academic coordinator but in the meantime:
    • General Academic Questions – Myself or Carolyn Gilbert
    • Specific Plan of Study Questions – Your Faculty Advisor
    • Registration related (course waiver / drops / permission #s) – Kelsey Liddle
    • CPT or OPT related – Kelsey Liddle
    • TA Questions – Shundrell Spann

Support Resources

  • We have a new MEM Student Resources site ( log in with your NetID) for all your MEM needs. Please bookmark this page and check back for announcements, resources, etc. This is replacing the MEMP Student Resources Sakai site.
  • Career Services will continue virtually via MS Teams for MEM specific needs, career fairs & tech connect will also be virtual. They are also creating ‘Virtual Career Treks’ which will allow students to “visit” employers virtually. If you have not connect with career services on MS Teams, please reach out to Jenny Johnson to receive the log-in details and passcode to the group.
  • PDC Clubs will still be active! Rishab Venkataraman has some fantastic new ideas for the semester and we’re excited to see PDC launch into the virtual space. Stay connected to PDC news & events via the MEM Facebook Group (
  • Carolyn in Student Services will continue to offer various engagement events throughout the semester – virtual yoga classes, paint events, lunches with faculty, etc. Anything that can be done safely – if you have an idea for programming, feel free to reach her directly!

Duke Campus Life

  • It’s no surprise that campus life will look very different. Pratt has done a great job of securely and safely opened campus labs and we will continue to work with building operation to do so when classes begin.
  • Expected rules for each person on-campus: daily symptom monitoring, face masks (3 reusable Duke Blue masks will be provided to you), proper hand washing, physical distancing, and staying in the Durham, NC area for the duration of fall semester.
  • If you become COVID-19 symptomatic or at risk due to contact tracing, you will be required to self-isolate.
  • Duke is in the process of writing a ‘Duke Compact’. Similar to a community standard, a mutual commitment to keep ALL members of the community safe.
  • MEM is in the process of developing rules and guidelines around the MEM Student & Office suite. Our goal is to maintain as much resemblance to “normal” as necessary but also 100% committed to keeping students, staff, and faculty safe and healthy. We will likely close the MEM Student Suite to limit the spread of droplets and aerosols. Our staff members will likely continue working from home most days with a limited, rotating on-campus schedule. Staff and faculty will always be available via virtual platforms.

Misc. Updates

  • While this summer is very different in many ways, we are still working hard on creating an exciting and engaging orientation for our Fall 2020 incoming cohort. These students will be virtually on-boarded the week of Aug 10 and then joining in your classes. Given the physical distancing, we ask that you welcome the new students into the MEM community as you would if we were all together in Schiciano! Say hello on facebook, create inclusive teams in your courses, and help answer those new student questions when they ask. It wasn’t long ago that you were the new student.
  • New bootcamp for Python – Led by Prof. Morales this 6 week course beginning Aug 10 consists of 23 asynchronous lecture sessions (4 per week) plus 6 synchronous 30 min sessions (one per week Thursdays 8 pm EST).  It is designed to build proficiency in Python for use in Data Science. During the bootcamp, the workload is expected to be ~ 12 hours per week. This bootcamp will be:
    • Recommended for EGRMGMT 590 MARKETING ANALYTICS & RESEARCH and students interested in data analytics

Thank you for reading the entirety of this email. We are hopeful that we will have a fulfilling and exciting semester ahead. I wish you all the best as you continue your summer internships or other work in the remaining weeks.