Duke Divinity School welcomed an entering class of 232 new students from 36 different states and six other countries, including China, Colombia, Singapore, South Korea, and Zimbabwe.
The Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree program gained 144 new students. Students from minority groups comprised more than 26 percent of incoming M.Div. students, with black students making up 18 percent, compared to 15.6 percent last year. Female students made up 47 percent of incoming M.Div. students, up from 40 percent last year.
Across all degree programs at the Divinity School, 27 percent of the incoming class were from underrepresented groups. Black students made up 17 percent of all students; Hispanic students, 2 percent; Asian students, 7 percent; and American Indian students, 1 percent. Forty-six percent of students in the incoming class were female, up from 40 percent last year.
“The 2016 incoming class is bringing a lot of energy to Duke Divinity School and they are eager to be formed into leaders who will serve the church, academy and world,” said Todd Maberry, senior director of admissions, recruitment and student finance. “Collectively, they are hopeful and have a deep desire to be a part of and lead social change. I am excited for them and look forward to witnessing how God works through Duke Divinity to develop them into the type of people our world needs.”
There were 37 denominations represented in the M.Div. entering class, with 44 percent affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Nondenominational students made up 15 percent of the new M.Div. students; Baptists, 9 percent; Anglican-Episcopal, 6 percent; and Presbyterian/Reformed, 5 percent.
The Divinity School welcomed the entering class with an orientation program and picnic, followed by Opening Convocation on Aug. 30, during which Elaine A. Heath was installed as the 13th dean of Duke Divinity School.