Conference Details

Date: Monday, June 5, 2017
Location: Rubenstein & Perkins Libraries, Duke University, Durham, NC

Program Schedule: Just Space Bulletin (10)

Breakout Session descriptions can be found here: JustSpaceProgramOutline

Conference Schedule:

8-8:45am – Check In and Breakfast (breakfast provided)

8:45-9am – Welcome to Duke

9:10-10am – Breakout Session 1

10:10-11am – Keynote 1 – Dr. Diya Abdo

11:10-12pm – Breakout Session 2

12:05-12:35pm – Get Lunch (lunch provided)

12:35-1:25pm – Lunch and Keynote 2 – Dr. Candis W. Smith

1:35-2:25pm – Breakout Session 3

2:25-2:50pm – Break and Art Galleries Open (snack provided)

2:50 – 3:40pm – Breakout Session 4

3:50-4:40pm – Keynote 3 – Mr. Pierce Freelon

4:40-4:50pm – Closing

Keynote Speaker Biographies

Dr. Candis W. Smith – Assistant Professor Public Policy UNC Chapel Hill

Dr. Candis Smith tends to ask research questions that blur disciplinary lines; many of the questions she poses can only be answered by considering bodies of literature, theoretical frameworks, and methodological strategies found in Sociology, Political Science, Psychology and Public Policy. Her research interests focuses on American political behavior and Racial and Ethnic Politics. Here, she focuses on individuals’ and groups’ policy preferences, particularly around social policies that exacerbate or ameliorate disparities and inequality between groups.
In addition to being an Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Dr. Smith is also an Adjunct Professor of African and African American Diaspora Studies. Prior to joining the UNC community, Professor Smith taught at Williams College and was also a Postdoctoral Fellow at Texas A&M University. She received her B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from Duke University, and served as the Graduate Resident of Few Quadrangle while a graduate student.

Dr. Diya Abdo – Associate Professor Guilford College, Founder of Every Campus a Refuge

Dr. Diya Abdo is a professor at Guilford College, along with being the founder and director of Every Campus a Refuge. Diya, chair of the Department of English and Creative Writing, was inspired to action in September after hearing Pope Francis call on every parish in Europe to shelter a refugee family. College campuses should do the same thing, she decided. Working closely with a local resettlement agency, Guilford College has thus far hosted 27 refugees.
“This is reimagining how we use campus resources,” she told the News & Record. “This is mobilizing campus resources in really focused ways. I think that’s what really cool about this little parish of ours.” 

Mr. Pierce Freelon- Durham Mayoral Candidate, Professor, Musician, Founder of Blackspace 

Mr. Pierce Freelon is a professor of music and Black studies; an electrifying hip hop and jazz vocalist; the host of a popular Emmy award winning PBS web-series; and a community organizer. Freelon earned his BA in African and Afro-American Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and his MA in Pan African Studies from Syracuse University. He has lectured in over a dozen countries, and has been featured in Wall Street Journal, NPR and Good Magazine. Pierce Freelon is also running for mayor of Durham North Carolina.

Duke Library Gender-Inclusive Restrooms and Lactation Rooms

If at any point during the conference you need or would like to pray or meditate, there is a space available in Perkins library (Perkins 220). For information about the prayer and meditation space, click here.


We hope to provide a conference that is accessible to all persons. If you have specific questions or concerns, please email us at


Just Space falls during the month of Ramadan. All interested guests are welcome to join the Center for Muslim Life at its iftar.CML will host the first Iftar on Tuesday May 30, 2017. The address of the Center is 406 Swift Ave. Durham, NC. If you will be joining us this year for Ramadan please fill out the following form

Each night will follow a version of the following schedule:

  1. Athan for Magrib
  2. Breaking of the fast with dates and water
  3. Praying of Magrib in shifts
  4. First shift finishes praying and goes to get food while Shift two goes to pray
  5. Shift two finishes praying and gets food 6. Finish eating
  6. Clean up
  7. Isha/Final Clean up