Members of the Duke Marching Band lead first-year students down Chapel Drive during the Bricks to Stone event. Photo by Bill Snead

Bricks to Stone: A Short Walk Marks a Big Transition

“At its heart, Duke’s true beauty and strength are found not in our bricks or stone, but in our people," President Vincent Price said.

“As you transition from East to West, you will be supported by a community you can turn to for collaboration, friendship, and help when you need it. The friends you see here today want to help you explore your passions, make new connections, and have a wonderful experience. And in just a few short years, you will be returning to campus for reunions just like the alumni here this weekend.”

Left, first-year students try their hand at cornhole before marching to Duke Chapel. Above, President Vincent Price joined students in the “Bricks to Stone” celebration.

The “Bricks to Stone” march was inaugurated last year with the launching of QuadEx, an effort involving students, faculty and administrators in integrating the social, residential and intellectual lives of undergraduates to provide for a better living and learning experience.

On Friday, community was the theme, with students enjoying games, food and music prior to the march at a block party in front of the Karsh Alumni and Visitors Center. The presence of numerous alumni on hand for Reunion weekend contributed to the atmosphere.

Part of QuadEx is the linkage of East Campus residential houses to West Campus quads, so that the community that has been created among students during the first year can continue throughout their time at Duke.

Each quad has its own identity, and several quad mascots, such as the Craven Raven (pictured above with Ben Adams, senior associate dean of students, and Mary Pat McMahon, vice provost and vice president of student affairs), were on hand at Duke Chapel to greet the students. In fact, each quad has a mascot, some with histories dating back decades. The mascot is just one of the many visual icons and traditions developed by students living in each of the quads that will now be passed on to incoming residents next year. That process began Friday.

Photos by Bill Snead, University Communications and Marketing