Back on Campus
After almost 18 months of online teaching and learning due to the coronavirus pandemic, the fall semester has marked a return to normal for Duke Law with in-person classes and a full cohort of students and faculty on campus.
In late August Kerry Abrams, the James B. Duke and Benjamin N. Duke Dean and professor of law, joyfully welcomed 282 students in the JD Class of 2024 and 63 internationally trained lawyers in the LLM Class of 2022 (who joined 51 others who began their studies remotely last January). Student Affairs personnel also hosted a “Welcome to Duke 2.0” orientation session for members of the Class of 2023 who had taken all of their first-year classes online.
Vaccinations are required for all students, faculty, and staff, as are masks indoors. Many faculty continue to offer virtual office hours and along with administrators and staff have sought to make the semester run smoothly.
Having spent part of her first year and all of her second year taking courses online from Durham or her hometown of Wilmington, N.C., Meredith Criner ’22 said it has been great to be back on campus, even though it’s “still not the same” as pre-pandemic days. “It’s been nice to have professor availability for in-person office hours and I have enjoyed meeting people in person that I have been talking to online for over a year,” she said in mid-October. “Outside of classes, I feel more connected to the Duke Law community, due to being in the building, attending student organization lunch events, and meeting friends for coffee and lunch.” Criner added that she’s also looking forward to attending Duke basketball games in Cameron Indoor Stadium: “I look forward to hopefully winning season tickets in the lottery like I did at Campout my 1L year!”