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Sanford Serves

Terry Sanford is one of North Carolina and Duke’s most influential, servant-minded figures, known for his outrageous ambition and belief in service learning. He dedicated his life to ethical leadership and public life, qualities that form the core of the Duke Sanford school’s mission. In honor of Duke’s Centennial and the Sanford School’s namesake, we are inviting Duke alumni from all over the world to join us in committing to 100 hours of public service.

We invite our alumni to come together around a public service mission and service-learning opportunity of your choosing to commit your time and resources to addressing this opportunity, and to reflect on how you, as an engaged citizen, can show leadership in moving your community forward.

Who: Duke Alumni and Friends

When: January – May 2024

How: Collectively, we will serve 100 hours, whether you set aside 30 minutes or 3 hours, your time will help us reach our goal!

Why: We believe in planting seeds of change within our communities. Our almost 10,000 alumni are scattered around the world, and through this initiative, can come together to fuel meaningful change and inspire civic engagement in our communities.

Service Suggestions: Volunteer with a local food bank, community garden, community school, and non-profits who could benefit from your time and talents. What would leave a lasting impact on your community? How can Terry Sanford’s ideas of outrageous ambition and service-learning leave a lasting impression on your community?

Steps to Join: Fill out our interest form and begin tracking your service. For Duke Alumni, we will mail you a t-shirt to wear while you are serving so you can send us a photo. For our community friends, wear your favorite Duke gear and send us a photo. As we gather interest, we will share regional connections with our alumni to create potential group opportunities.

Have questions? Reach out to Sanford’s Associate Director of Alumni Relations at

#SanfordServes #PlantingSeedsOfChange #DukeSanfordAlumni

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"The stamp of Duke University and its continuing goal ought to be the unrelenting search for excellence in all of its endeavors. Duke aspires to leave its students with an abiding concern for justice, with a resolve for compassion and concern for others, with minds unfettered by racial and other prejudices, with a dedication to service to society, with an intellectual sharpness, and with an ability to think straight now and throughout life. All of these goals are worthy of outrageous ambitions."

- Terry Sanford

Terry Sanford

Make Your Impact

DAR - Sanford Serves (34)
DAR - Sanford Serves (35)
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DAR - Sanford Serves (24)

Jodi Ganz PPS'94

"Since 1983, Central Synagogue’s Breakfast Program has been serving a hot breakfast and takeaway meal to many of NYC’s working poor. Unfortunately, the number of guests served weekly has increased noticeably in the last year. Our family has been volunteering for nearly a decade, and during the Covid lockdowns were some of the intrepid few who continued to volunteer."

Christine Graham

Christine Graham MPP'08

"I focused on social and education policy during my MPP program at Duke, and now my volunteering also focuses on public education. I am the PTA president at my children’s Title I elementary school in Herndon, Virginia. My focus this year was bringing together different students, families, and communities. last week we held a family game night where we invited families to play board games with each other. I was so delighted to see different groups of people come together in ways they hadn’t before."

Laura Howard McHenry

Laura McHenry PPS'04

"This semester, I am also helping students practice their lines for the school musical during their elective period, and I volunteer with the chess club, which meets after school. I am lucky that my employer (the North Carolina Department of Justice) gives us 24 hours of community service leave each year. It means I have a fulfilling legal career and also get to spend time volunteering with people and causes that are important to me."


Jodi Ganz PPS'94 serving at the Central Synagogue’s Breakfast Program in New York City

Christine Graham

Christine Graham MPP'08 serving by hosting family board game night at her Elementary school in VA.

Laura Howard McHenry

Laura McHenry PPS'04 serving by helping students practice their lines for school musical during their elective period.