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PFF Requirements

PFF fellows typically participate in two or three of the activities listed below each month. For example, during the same month, one might visit her or his PFF faculty mentor at the partner institution and attend a site visit to a partner institution. Some fellows invest more time with their mentors and develop ties to the institution that can lead to adjunct teaching positions after their PFF program experience. Others use the program to gain more clarity on the type of institution in which they hope to teach. Overall, PFF fellows not only learn more about the realities of academic life, but also gain insight on their own personal and professional development.

Sample calendar of PFF events (varies each year)

Kickoff dinner
Guilford visit
Duke visit
Durham Tech visit
Mentor dinner
Meredith visit
Goal setting
NCSU visit
Elon visit
NCCU visit
Info session
applications due
new cohort announced


Meet with your PFF Mentor

Each PFF fellow will select a faculty member from one of the partner institutions (i.e., cluster schools) as his or her mentor and plan a set of professional development activities over the course of the year. We expect fellows to meet with their mentors at least once a month, and twice a month if possible. The Graduate School and the PFF Advisory Board from our partner institutions will help fellows choose effective PFF faculty mentors in related fields of study.

The overall goal is to learn firsthand the realities of day-to-day faculty life and work at cluster campuses, and how teaching, research, and service are balanced. See the Ideas and Expectations of Mentoring document (PDF) for more information.

Attend Site Visits to Partner Institutions

PFF fellows must attend half-day site visits to each of the cluster campuses held during the academic year. On average, fellows make one site visit a month. These trips provide an opportunity for conversation with faculty, administrators, and students on each campus, as well as interaction with other PFF fellows in the program from various disciplines.

Various events are planned for PFF fellows by the host institution, including classroom observations, campus tours, departmental visits, and panel discussions on topics relevant to faculty life. Fellows often have the opportunity to talk with undergraduates at these schools about what to expect if they intend to pursue graduate education. Each site visit usually concludes with a dinner meeting hosted by faculty and administrators who discuss issues related to the job market, tenure, teaching, advising, research, funding, publishing, or service.


PFF Socials

The Graduate School offers occasional social opportunities on campus for PFF fellows and mentors. These socials may include informal brown-bag lunch discussions, evening dinners or social activities, and opportunities for further networking with Duke PFF alumni or special guest speakers.