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Sound the Alarms!

Fear not, Dookies: That blaring siren you may hear this month is only a test.

Duke this summer is joining a number of universities installing outdoor alarm and alert systems to use in case of campus emergency - a response to last year's massacre at Virginia Tech. 

The university has been installing the systems in recent months and will be testing them in July. Aaron Graves, Duke's security chief, told me this week the specific times of the tests aren't yet known, but will be done throughout the month.

Flower pot, gas theft strike on holiday weekend

Usually holiday weekends mean mayhem for police. On the campus of Duke University, police were dealing with some low blows. From the police log:

July 5, 2008

9:59 a.m. Duke Gardens. Larceny. An employee reported 150 gallons of gas were stolen.

July 6, 2008

8:54 p.m. Doris Duke Center. Larceny. An unknown male placed a flower pot inside his vehicle and drove away.

Also, at Duke Hospital North, a visitor demonstrates possibly one of the most abhorrent, not to mention dangerous, places for weapon storage:

July 3, 2008

10:02 p.m. Duke Hospital North. Weapon on campus. Security Officers at the entry screening area found a weapon in a diaper bag; the visitor was issued a state citation for same.

Gas bandits strike at Duke

From the Duke University Police Log, just released this afternoon:

June 30, 5:35 p.m. Larceny. Parking Garage IV. An employee reported approximately $20 of gasoline stolen from his vehicle’s tank between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.

Twenty dollars worth. Hmm. With gas prices the way they are these days, I think that's about how much money I lose if the nozzle drips a little when I'm putting it back.

College Conservatism

Abby Alger, a 20-year-old rising senior at Duke, has a simple political philosophy. She believes there are plenty of people her age with conservative beliefs. They're Republicans, she says. They just don't know it yet.

That's the idea behind her new blog, which she created in an attempt to create political conversation among college-age people perhaps put off by the traditional Republican talking points.

Read more here

Duke's Green home a hit

An energy-efficient, 10-person residence hall at Duke University has been recognized for its environmental efforts.

The Home Depot Smart Home was recently given top-level
platinum standard
for its design from the U.S. Green Building Council's
LEED rating system. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and
Environmental Design.

The home is just one example of a new trend towards better energy efficiency in campus construction.

It's still 4 bucks a gallon

Some Duke professors are challenging the conventional "miles per gallon" terminology employed by the automobile industry.

Researchers with Duke's Fuqua School of Business are positing that posting a vehicle's fuel efficiency in "gallons per mile" rather than "miles per gallon" would help motorists make better decisions when buying a new car.

The study will appear in the June 20 issue of Science magazine. It was inspired by a debate professors Richard Larrick and Jack Soll had while carpooling in a hybrid car, according to a Duke press release. The two management professors ran experiments that showed that the current "miles per gallon" terminology led consumers to think fuel consumption goes down at an even rate even as efficiency improves.

Duke to Sound the Alarms

Local police this sunday will be doing mock crisis management drills. So if you're out and about on campus and see police running around firing paint balls, remain calm. All is well.

The drills are part of a series of campus safety improvements Duke is implementing in reaction to last year's shootings at Virginia Tech, which forced universities to take a fresh look at how they secure themselves. 

A small library closes

Duke University's Vesic Library, a small facility housing engineering, math and physics collections, has closed.

It was housed in the Teer engineering building. The collections have been moved to Perkins, the main campus library.

Can Barack win here?

Can Barack Obama win here in North Carolina? Two Duke professors debate his chances here.

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