Cancellation of 2020

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In 2020, what would have been the fortieth year of Duke TiP's summer studies program, the program was cancelled for the year on March 30th. Due to the spread of COVID-19, all residential programs sponsored by Duke in the summer of 2020 were cancelled. Duke's official statement on the matter was posted to their Twitter account. More correspondence from admin is hopefully coming soon.

Important: Current 10th-graders will be able to attend TiP in 2021, per a Twitter Update TiP has also noted on their Instagram that this is a one-time thing, so fifth years will not become the norm.

There is no info available on whether current freshmen will be able to attend in 2022. Please help advocate for this if you can.


This is the only time in over three decades of TiP history in which the program has been outright cancelled. Swine '09 practically shut down Duke East and Davidson, the latt over ten years ago, but this is even bigger. Multiple cohorts of TiPsters will miss a year of TiP, and many more problems will ensue among them.


Relics are a huge part of TiP life, culture, and history. Now, TiP's cancellation has the potential to bring ruin to one of the program's greatest traditions. Obviously, there is no longer any way to exchange physical relics without physically handing them over, save for the postal system. The problem is a more fundamental one than this. Although titles will be unaffected in the same ways as physical relics, there will not be a way to decide who receives them without TiP itself. Thus, relic-holders must create contingency plans in light of recent events.


The general consensus immediately following the cancellations was that they were unfair on some level, but well-reasoned and necessary.

What admin has to say

This is a place to post admin's public statements. A screenshot of their next email regarding the situation would be greatly appreciated when the time comes.

The TiP website's official notice as of March 30th, 2020.

The social media announcement

After much deliberation, based on a thorough understanding of the progression of COVID-19, Duke University has made the decision not to proceed with any summer residential programs sponsored by the University for 2020.

This cancellation applies to all dates, locations, and age groups for both our Summer Studies and CRISIS programs. It does not, however, apply to our online summer programs for 4th–6th graders (eInvestigators) or 7–10th graders (eStudies).

We share in your disappointment today but likewise encourage you to share in our determination to make next year’s sessions the best yet.

Duke TIP held its first session of what would eventually be named Summer Studies in 1981. One hundred fifty-one students from twenty-five states attended the program that year, held on Duke University’s West Campus. Since then, thirty-eight straight cohorts of bright, inimitable students have attended Summer Studies and helped turn it into the beloved institution that it is today.

This year's group would have been the fortieth to attend the Summer Studies Program.

The CRISIS program, like the students who attend it, is relatively young. This would have been only the ninth cohort to attend the program. That means there’s room for both the program and its students to grow their ambition and discover untapped drive.

We hope all TIPsters, both current and past, come out of this with a broadened perspective and renewed motivation to learn—both for the sake of learning itself and to make a real difference in the world.

We will stay in direct contact with all families affected by these program cancellations.

What you can do

As of right now, there is no knowledge about the possibility of fifth years attending TiP in 2021. It is our duty as TiPsters to make things happen. Check the various TiP GroupMe chats for more info, and feel free to organize here.

Greenie Rights

Please do whatever you can to help current 9th graders get an extra year, too. This is a contentious topic, but I'm putting it here anyway to raise awareness.

Other info

TiP's CRISIS program for younger students was also cancelled.

Notably, American Dance Festival and Duke's sports programs have not been affected by these cancellations, to the dismay of many East TiPsters.