Program Description

The Young Scholars Summer Research Institute is a three-week program that provides high school students enrolled in Durham Public Schools (DPS) with training to enhance their writing, research, and presentation skills. The program is sponsored by the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity at Duke University in partnership with Durham Public Schools (DPS). In keeping with the Samuel DuBois Cook Center’s central mission as a community of scholars engaged in the study of the causes and consequences of inequality, program participants explore curriculum related to the economic, social, and political dimensions of inequality. During the Young Scholars Summer Research Institute, students receive instruction from distinguished teachers, university professors, and leaders from community organizations. The program’s main focus is on the development of the students’ research, writing, presentation, and critical-inquiry skills, culminating in a capstone presentation of students’ individual or group research projects.

Program Goals

  • Enhance student research, writing, and presentation skills within an academically high-achieving environment
  • Facilitate student ownership of learning and develop tools for critical inquiry
  • Foster collaborative and interdisciplinary approach to the study of the causes and consequences of inequality
  • Enable student production of individual research related to the varied causes and consequences of inequality and possible remedies for achieving equity and social justice (involving the intersections of class, income, wealth, gender, race, health, law, employment, and education)
  • Identify and recruit the next generation of scholars engaged in the study of inequality and design of remedies for addressing group-based disparities and conflicts

Program Administration and Faculty

Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity
  • William A. Darity, Program Founder
  • Gwendolyn Wright, Program Administrator
  • Erica Phillips, Program Coordinator
Durham Public Schools
  • Daniel Kelvin Bullock, Program Liaison; Executive Director for Equity Affairs with Durham Public Schools
About Durham Public Schools

Durham Public Schools serves more than 32,000 students in 53 schools across the city and county. Student-participants in the Young Scholars Summer Research Institute must be currently enrolled in Durham Public Schools and entering the ninth, tenth, or eleventh grade.

Program Information

  • Programming: July 7, 2020 — July 24, 2020, 8:30 am-4:00 pm, weekdays @ Nicholas School of The Environment, Duke University.
  • Capstone Conference: July 27, 2020, 5:00-8:00 pm, @ Penn Pavilion, Duke University.
  • Cost: Free.
  • Transportation: It is required to drop off and pick up your child from programming. We will provide transportation on a limited, approved, case by case basis.
  • Food: Breakfast, lunch, and snacks are provided while on site.

Application & Deadlines

  • 3rd year cohort application
  • Only accepting applications from invited, returning students.
    • Application Due: September 20, 2019
    • Application Decisions: October 11, 2019
  • 2nd year cohort application- EnglishSpanish
  • Accepting returners and new applicants.
    • Application Due: February 15, 2020
    • Application Decisions: April 1, 2020
  • 1st year cohort application- EnglishSpanish
  • Accepting applications from rising 9th-11th grade DPS students.
    • Application Due: February 15, 2020
    • Application Decisions: April 1, 2020

2019 Young Scholars Capstone Conference

On July 29, 2019, the Duke University Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity hosted its Capstone Conference for the fifth annual Hank and Billye Suber Aaron Young Scholars Research Institute. Read about the event here.

What People Are Saying

“It was a total success and I know that the Young Scholars are motivated to become activist and change agents for social justice. Thank you again for this amazing program.”

Young Scholars Parent

“Although hesitant at first, my student thoroughly enjoyed himself, and he was excited to tell us about his daily work and learned information that is helpful to him. He was nervous about presenting, however he became more confident and did well.”

Young Scholars Parent
  • “I enjoyed hearing from everyone [at the Capstone] and the topics are all relevant and timely.”
Young Scholars Parent

“I enjoyed being in the 3rd year cohort and digging deeper into my topic. I also appreciate working with all of the teachers and staff of the institute.”

Young Scholars Student

“My favorite part of the institute was watching the change in the depth of conversation with my student.”

Young Scholars Parent

“The teachers and staff are supportive and transparent. The village concept is working!”

Young Scholars Parent

“Keep up the great work. You are creating future leaders who will understand the key issues impacting our community.”

Young Scholars Parent