Lush Countryside Photo Earns Duke Time Off Prize

Employees share about 250 photos so far in the summer campaign highlighting Duke's time off benefit

Trinidad Abe poses for a photo in front of rice paddies in Ifugao, a landlocked province in the northern neck of the Philippines. Photo courtesy of Trinidad Abe.
Trinidad Abe poses for a photo in front of rice paddies in Ifugao, a landlocked province in the northern neck of the Philippines. Photo courtesy of Trinidad Abe.

Trinidad Abe spent her summers growing up in the Philippines, running among rice fields with her six brothers and sisters in the country’s Ifugao province. 

She moved to the United States in 1992 to pursue a career in nursing and returns to the Philippines every three years. In between visits with her siblings, nieces and nephews, she makes time to visit the vibrant green fields. 

On a two-week trip this summer, Abe captured a photo of her beloved rice paddies. 

“Spending time home with family is always precious to me, so I appreciate having the time to take such a long vacation,” said Abe, a clinical nurse for Duke Regional Hospital’s Vascular Access Support Team. “My father used to say, ‘No matter where your feet take you, don’t forget where you came from.’”

Abe is the second winner in the Duke Time Off photo campaign, which highlights the hobbies, celebrations and summertime adventures of staff and faculty using Duke’s time off benefit. Abe earned a beach pack that includes a Duke beach towel, water bottle and frisbee courtesy of Duke University Stores. 

To be eligible for prizes this year, photos must be taken between May 22, 2019 and Aug. 9, 2019 and shared by current University and Health System staff and faculty during the same time period. Staff and faculty have shared about 250 photos so far.

Check out some recent submissions. 

Nick Antonicci
Nick Antonicci, director of the Duke Center for Gender & Diversity, tried to become one with the grapevines while visiting a vineyard in Franschhoek, South Africa. He took a two and a half week trip to South Africa and visited Cape Town and Franschhoek, in the heart of wine country. 

“My partner and I stayed in a farm cottage surrounded by a picturesque vineyard, rolling hills and beautiful mountains,” Antonicci said. “Duke Time Off allows me to satisfy my desire for experiencing adventure, expand my perspective on culture and indulge in delicious food and drink.”

Courtney CovertCourtney Covert traveled to the North Carolina Black Bear Festival in Plymouth. The annual festival includes free music, tours of a black bear refuge, paddle boating and classic car show. It was Covert’s first year attending the festival. 

“I can die happy,” said Covert, patient service associate for the Adult Bone Marrow Transplant. “I saw two black bears.” 

Erin Brunmeier
Erin Brunmeier, a nurse anesthetist for Duke Anesthesiology, spent a week in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina with 15 friends and family members. Brunmeier and her travel buddies woke up to watch the sunrise one morning and she captured the image above of a cyclist riding on the beach. 

She spent the rest of her time playing corn hole, hunting for seashells and taking naps. 

“It's so refreshing to have no agenda,” Brunmeier said. “This beach trip always offers the perfect way to reset and refresh the mind, body and soul.”


  • Post a photo and be sure to include #DukeTimeOff on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Tell us what you’re doing with your time away from work. Remember, use #DukeTimeOff so we see your snapshots on social media;
  • Post a photo and caption on the Working@Duke Facebook page:;
  • Or, go to to upload your picture 

During the campaign, the Working@Duke editorial team will award Duke-themed beach chairs, towels, water bottles and frisbees from Duke University Stores. Grand prizes awarded at the end of the campaign include:

  • One overnight stay with breakfast for two at the JB Duke Hotel
  • Dinner for two at the Washington Duke Inn’s Fairview Dining Room

Have a story idea or news to share? Share it with Working@Duke