Duke University trustee and Apple executive Eddy Cue (’86) and his wife Paula (’86) have made a $10 million gift to advance diverse faculty hiring and retention at Duke.
At Apple, the Cues learned that for technology to meet the world’s needs, everyone must be able to see themselves in it.
Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of services and a new Duke trustee, and Paula Cue, a former Apple programmer, say everyone has unique skills. They’ve seen the benefits that employees can add to the technology industry when their inclusive experiences, perspectives and skills are represented and valued.
Now, through a new $10 million gift to Duke Science and Technology, the Cues want to continue developing ways to diversify technology by providing more opportunities for Duke students and faculty. The gift will help the university recruit and educate the next generation of tech leaders and innovators and further advance Duke’s focus on computing—AI, cybersecurity, privacy, autonomous systems, the Internet of things and more.
The largest part of the gift, $8 million, will help establish the Cue Faculty Fellows—four early-career, diverse faculty hires. Two of the Cue Faculty Fellows will join Duke’s computer science department in Trinity College of Arts & Sciences and two will join the computer engineering department in the Pratt School of Engineering.
“We are so grateful to receive this transformational gift from Eddy and Paula Cue,” said Duke President Vincent E. Price. “Expanding opportunities for underrepresented populations in the STEM fields is a vitally important priority as we seek to foster both a more diverse academy and inclusive future for technology. Paula and Eddy’s generosity—and the Cue Faculty Fellows program—will ensure that Duke leads the way.”
The lack of diversity in STEM—science, technology, engineering and math—has long been a struggle for both institutions of higher education and the modern workforce. A recent report released by the Pew Research Center notes that the share of women and Black Americans employed in STEM has not significantly increased since 2016.
The gift will enable Duke to not only recruit extraordinary faculty, but to retain them, says Valerie Ashby, dean of Trinity College of Arts & Sciences.
“I have tremendous appreciation for all the ways the Cues have engaged with Trinity and with Duke,” Ashby says. “This significant investment in our academic core will be meaningful for years to come.”