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Students At Rival Schools Get Two-For-One Academic Deal

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — This year, commencement ceremonies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University had something in common. Both graduated the first class of Robertson scholars.

Twenty-seven students studied at both universities and completed summer service projects abroad.

Four years ago, Blair Goldstein applied to UNC and was chosen for a new scholarship program that sounded promising.

"You're going to get to travel in the summer. You're going to get to live at one campus, but spend a semester at the other," she said. "It was definitely challenging at time, but you know over the course of the semester, it became a second home."

UNC became a second home to Duke graduate Tyler McCormick.

"The opportunity utilized both sets of resources, simultaneously and interchangely, makes for a college experience that I think is above and beyond anywhere else in the country," McCormick said.

While both schools have a heated rivalry on the basketball court, students said it did not affect them at all.

"I think a lot of time the rivalry is sort of superficial, based on basketball, but you start talking to people and meeting people from the other campus. It sort of fades away," McCormick said.

"I love Duke and I have some great friends there, but when it comes to basketball, I'm a UNC student," Goldstein said.

Goldstein plans to pursue journalism while McCormick is headed to graduate school. Robertson scholars receive full tuition at Duke or full tuition, room and board at UNC. Every year since 2000, students are chosen on merit from among all the applicants to both universities.


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