Durham, N.C., “Bull City,” has been named one of the top 10 places to live by U.S. News and World Report. When you consider the temperate climate, affordable cost of living, and a culture that combines world-class research and learning institutions, a flourishing arts and restaurant scene, and rich and varied opportunities for worship and Christian community, it’s easy to see why.

As a student at Duke Divinity School, you can also take advantage of everything that Duke University has to offer—including a library system with more than 6.8 million volumes, a full calendar of lectures, access to premier performance arts at a subsidized cost, recreational facilities, a network of campus organizations and student services, and tickets to exciting collegiate athletic events. In addition, you’ll have access to course offerings in nine other graduate and professional schools and inter-institutional registration opportunities.

Life in Durham

Duke is situated in the foothills of North Carolina’s beautiful Piedmont region, halfway between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Atlantic beaches. Popular destinations include Asheville, N.C.; Wilmington, N.C.; Williamsburg, Va., and Washington, D.C.

Although the area has four distinct seasons, temperatures are mild year-round. The average winter temperature is about 42 degrees and the summer temperature is 77 degrees. The area enjoys sunshine for around 210 days each year.

The cost of living in Durham is 2.5% below the national average, and students are eligible for a free transportation pass on local bus systems.

Durham has more than 300 religious and spiritual organizations (search local faith communities). The diverse setting makes it an excellent area for ministry and engagement in the community. And at Duke, you’ll find hundreds of worship services each year in addition to the 11 services hosted by Duke Divinity School each week.

Duke University

When you come to Duke Divinity School, you also become part of the Duke University family. As a member of a world-class institution of higher learning, you'll have the opportunity to connect with an outstanding community of scholars through interdisciplinary learning opportunities, inspiring lectures and events, and a variety of student organizations. And you'll be at the center of it all: in addition to serving as Duke University's spiritual center, Duke Divinity School is located at the heart of West Campus, right next to Duke Chapel. 

Duke University boasts superb cultural resources, including the Nasher Museum of Art, professional performing arts through Duke Performances, and Duke Gardens—55 acres of gorgeous gardens minutes from Duke Divinity School.

Of course, you'll also find a full array of support services, including the Student Health Center, Counseling and Psychological Services, and top-notch athletic and recreational facilities and clubs.

Resources for Families

Child Care

Duke Partnership Child Care Centers offer priority placement to Duke students. Partnership Centers must maintain a four or five star license and be in good standing with the North Carolina and Child Care Services Association.

The Divinity School has an unstaffed children’s playroom in the Gray building and a breast-feeding area in the Women’s Center with a refrigerator and changing table.


Spouses of graduate students can get a Duke ID card, which allows access to recreational facilities, athletic events, and more. Students will first need to sponsor their spouse at the OIT Guest Account webpage. Once a Duke NetID is issued, students then must bring their own DukeCard, their spouse, a copy of their marriage certificate, a government issued photo ID of the spouse, and $5 to the DukeCard office.

The Divinity School has a Divinity Spouses group, which plans social, spiritual, and educational activities.

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