1. Duke University

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  5. About Duke University

    Duke University is a private coeducational research university located in Durham, North Carolina, United States. Founded by Methodists and Quakers in the present-day town of Trinity in 1838, the school moved to Durham in 1892. In 1924, tobacco industrialist James Buchanan Duke established The Duke Endowment, prompting the institution to change its name in honor of his deceased father, Washington Duke.

    The University is organized into two undergraduate and eight graduate schools. The undergraduate student body, which includes 40 percent racial or ethnic minorities, comes from all 50 U.S. states and 117 countries. In its 2008 edition, U.S. News & World Report ranked the undergraduate division eighth in the nation, while ranking the medical, law, and business schools among the top 11 in the country. Duke's research expenditures are among the largest 20 in the U.S. and its athletic program is one of the nation's elite. Competing in the Atlantic Coast Conference, the athletic teams have captured nine national championships, including three by the men's basketball team.

    Besides academics, research, and athletics, Duke is also well known for its sizable campus and Gothic architecture, especially Duke Chapel. The forests surrounding parts of the campus belie the University's proximity to downtown Durham. Duke's 8,610 acres (35 km²) contain three main campuses in Durham as well as a marine lab in Beaufort. Construction projects have updated both the freshmen-populated Georgian-style East Campus and the main Gothic-style West Campus, as well as the adjacent Medical Center over the past five years. Other projects are underway on all three campuses, including a 50- to 75-year overhaul of Central Campus, the first phase of which is expected to be completed in early 2011.

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