In 2005, a group of fourteen community leaders convened at the home of Tony and Teddie Brown. School Board members, representatives from University of North Carolina, North Carolina Central University, and Duke University, and Durham Academy administrators sat at a table and dreamt of a new way to empower Durham Public Schools students to own their education.
Mary Williams, Amanda Dorsey, and Dan Kimberg, three college students, shared their commitment to working with the community to build a sustainable and impactful organization. Guided by what they learned from Tony Brown’s Social Entrepreneurship class and their work in education both locally and abroad, the three students facilitated a conversation about dreams, brilliance, and the spread of joy. Under the leadership of this fourteen-person Start-Up Advisory Committee, a program began to form. With core values as its foundation and a crazy dream as its objective, Student U was created by Durham and for Durham.
Sam was Dan Kimberg’s grandfather and the man that inspired the values and joy that are at the center of Student U. He is remembered and honored each year in our Sam Kimberg Award. This award is given to one Student U community member who has brought the most Joy to our community. The winner is then asked to write a chapter in the book “Sam’s School” about how he or she has learned to spread Joy to the World. Check out a small excerpt of their thoughts below.
The brilliance and successes of Student U’s community