Imagine yourself doing what you love and loving what you do, being happy from the inside out, living your dreams wide awake, creative, unique, you- changing things to the way you know they can be-enjoying the life you've always imagined. (quote from a Greeting Card)
Hi there! My name is Casey. I'm a proud Duke and Baldwin alum, having graduated in 2013. I grew up in a small two-stop light town called Chapin in the midlands of South Carolina. I have a wonderfully supportive and close knit family of five – my mom, dad and my two younger brothers. I have a multitude of interests and continue to get overly excited by new ideas and discoveries that I come across. I have several passions that have been burning within me for many years now, many of which I had the opportunity to explore during my time at Duke.
At Duke, I majored in Public Policy. My interest in this major stemmed from involvement in high school with education policy and law in South Carolina. Specifically, I was involved in projects to raise funds and awareness for schools along the "Corridor of Shame" in SC. Nelson Mandela said it best, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” As a senior in high school, I was presented with another opportunity to make a difference in the education sector and collaborated with lawyers and a public relations firm in South Carolina to file a State Supreme Court lawsuit, Casey Edwards vs. the State of South Carolina, aimed at acquiring the federal stimulus funds for public education. The Court made a ruling in our favor saving teaching jobs and educational programs across the state. Alongside my public policy major, I also earned a certificate in Documentary Studies. Had you asked me what Documentary Studies was prior to Duke, I wouldn't have had a clue, but a "Doc Studies" class was recommended to me during my freshmen year, and I was immediately hooked. Having always had a love for film and photography, I loved every second that I spent in the beloved documentary studies building, hidden along the C1 bus route editing photos in the darkroom and splicing radio edits in the computer labs. With small class sizes and students and professors alike who are passionate about these mediums of art and communication, I highly recommend taking at least one Documentary Studies class to any Duke student with any interest at all in these areas!
Outside of classes at Duke, I was also involved in CRU (Campus Crusade for Christ) and the Duke's premiere tap dance ensemble group, On Tap. Within CRU, I participated and lead bible studies, served at the Urban Ministries homeless shelter and at the Durham County Jail, and held a variety of leadership roles that involved planning events and outreach projects. Having danced since I was 4 years old, I knew I wanted to join On Tap as a freshman at Duke. I held the position of Show Coordinator in On Tap during my sophomore year and was President my junior year. I spent many late nights in rehearsals with the other women of On Tap and developed some wonderful friendships throughout my years as a part of this group. I try my best to travel to Duke each spring to see the annual On Tap showcase, I'm so proud of how our group has developed and grown over the last several years.
At Duke, I was also honored to be a Benjamin N. Duke Scholar. This program not only granted me the funding for my Duke education, but also with a family of lifelong friends and summer adventures that have shaped who I am today. Through the funding of both the Baldwin Scholars and the B.N. Duke Scholarship, I was able to travel to Africa twice during my collegiate years. Having been to Africa once before college, I had known I wanted to return, and the lessons I learned about life and the world during the two summers I spent in Kenya grew and changed me. A piece of my heart is with the people in Kenya and I have plans of going to live there in the not-to-distant future!
After graduating from Duke, I moved to Greenville, S.C. and began working for the non-profit Upstate Mediation Center, which provides mediation services for the low-income population of the upstate. After a year as their Mediation Coordinator, I completely switched directions in my (went back to that Doc Studies Route!) and took a job with Courtney Dox Photography as Assistant Creative Director and Associate Photographer. I’m currently working with Courtney and I photograph both weddings and newborns. I absolutely LOVE what I do, and I’m learning more each and every day. Capturing the first images of a newborns life or those timeless moments on a wedding day between a bride and her groom is exciting and fulfilling for me. On the side, I’m also a project manager for Rising Tide Sports & Entertainment Group, helping them to keep their projects organized, efficient, and up to date!
The Baldwin Scholars program has provided me with a network of female activists on Duke’s campus and around the world. Each scholar is unique and inspiring and together we are an unstoppable team of female leaders. One of the most compelling aspects of the Baldwin Scholars program for me was the opportunity to create close relationships with other women on Duke’s campus, students and faculty, so that we could share resources and collaborate on ideas during our time together. Coming from various backgrounds, each Baldwin Scholar has been extraordinarily successful in one or more areas of their life, yet we all are genuinely interested in learning from one another. I know the future holds countless innovative endeavors for each Baldwin Scholar and I count it a joy and a blessing to be a part of this family of accomplished and brilliant women.