A Message from the Parents Program Chairs

“Being involved with the Duke Parents Committee has been a wonderful experience for our family. We’ve made lifelong friendships with Committee and staff members and have enjoyed memorable parent and family gatherings during Committee events. We realized very early in our involvement how helpful and knowledgeable the staff leadership is concerning “all things Duke”, and the regularly scheduled program events continue to be a wealth of information about the many opportunities available to Duke students. Joining the Committee has also been a great way to meet an engaged group of non-alumni parents who generously share their time and resources to benefit all students enrolled at the University. As our fifth child begins his junior year at Duke and our four older children are now Duke alumni, we look forward to welcoming new members to experience the dynamic and informative interactions within the Parents Committee circle. We are especially grateful to the talented and dedicated Committee staff members for the depth and continued evolution of this nationally esteemed program. Their vision has developed the outstanding partnership between the Duke administrators and faculty and the non-alumni families who want to know Duke on a more personal level. Finally, we are deeply appreciative of each of our committee members and the Parents Committee leadership team whose collective enthusiasm embodies the roots of this program. We look forward to serving our third year as Chairs of the Committee through the 2022-23 academic year and wish everyone much success in the coming months. Go Duke!”

Gerard and Paula Sansosti P’15, P’19, P’20, P’21, P’24

Share your time and energy with Duke!

The Duke Parents Program is a vital part of the Duke Annual Fund. Each year, the generosity of Duke parents helps the university support its financial aid program, sustain a world-class faculty, pay for service-learning projects, and provide support for a wealth of innovative learning opportunities for students. The Parents Committee is the premier volunteer opportunity for non-alumni parents at Duke.

In 2021-22, the Duke Parents Committee raised over $9.3 million to set a new record for the Parents Program! This success would not be possible without the support, dedication, and enthusiasm of 810+ non-alumni Duke parents from across the country and across the globe. These proud Duke parents provide leadership support for the Annual Fund and reach out to other Duke parents to enlist their support of the Annual Fund. Our parent volunteers enjoy gaining a deeper appreciation for the experiences their children are having as Duke students, meeting fellow parents, and having an opportunity to give back to a university that gives their children so much.

Committee Members are asked to:

  • Make a leadership gift to the Annual Fund that is commensurate with your philanthropic capacity and passion for Duke, with the minimum gift being at the Washington Duke Society level.
  • Actively serve in at least one primary volunteer role, and update Class Co-Chairs and Parents Program staff on your outreach throughout the year:
    • Fundraising Volunteers: Educate parents about the importance of giving to Duke, and ask them to join you in supporting the Annual Fund. Resources will be provided to engage them through phone calls, letters, and/or emails. Send thank you notes to parents after they give.
    • Stewardship Volunteers: Send personalized thank you notes to parent donors at least two times each year, typically in the winter and summer. Call incoming families to welcome them to Duke each spring on behalf of the Parents Committee. Follow up with these families during the fall of their student’s freshman year to provide support and guidance.
  • Serve as an ambassador to help strengthen relationships between parents and the University, and identify potential leadership donors and volunteers from your network.
  • Attend Committee events during Family Weekend (October 14-16) and Parents Committee Spring Weekend (March 31-April 2) as your schedule allows.
  • Participate in other opportunities as you are able, such as hosting or attending regional events, mentoring students, offering internships at your company, or speaking on campus.

Committee Members can expect:

  • Meaningful impact at the University through your philanthropy, engagement, and volunteerism.
  • Exclusive access to hear from top Duke faculty and administrators at events and Speaker Series calls.
  • Support from Parents Program staff and Class Co-Chairs, including training materials, regular updates, contact information, outreach emails and tips, and other resources as requested.
  • Mentorship connections for you and your student in the Committee’s private Mentorlink program.
  • Connections with fellow parents through outreach, regional events, and on-campus opportunities.
  • Staff assistance in navigating Duke and deeper engagement with specific interest areas for you or your student.

Fill out the form below to request additional information on joining the Parents Committee.


Contact us at (919) 684-4419 or parentsprogram@duke.edu.