**This event is free and open to the public**

Friday, October 25, 2013

Location:  107 White Lecture Hall , Duke University East Campus (in Google Maps, type in "107 White Lecture Hall")

5:00pm: Dr. Mae Jemison's Keynote Address

6:30pm: Reception


Saturday, October 26, 2013

Location: 115 Ernestine Friedl Building  (in Google Maps, type in "Ernestine Friedl Building")


8:00-9:00am: Breakfast and Registration


PANEL#1: 9:00-10:30am:  Speculative Fiction: Space Settlements Under Conditions of Ethnic Diversity

With the probability of space settlements rising with each new discovery, the panel will address the growing concern about the ethics, rules, and relationships such new advances will bring. On earth, westward expansion in the former New World was paralleled with a host of human atrocities all justified in the name of profit and resettlement with the term “alien” closely reflecting notions of otherness that created racial categories class based divisions that exist to this day.

Danielle Belton (Blacksnob.com)

L.M. Davis (Author)

Karla Holloway (Duke University)

Priscilla Wald (Moderator, Duke University)



PANEL#2: 10:45am-12:15pm:  STEM Fields in Space

While the conference will not eliminate the factors impeding the successful completion of STEM undergraduate degrees for students of color, it can be a step to facilitate toward achieving both global collaboration in the pursuit of space exploration and settlement, and encouraging students to pursue advanced degrees in aerospace engineering, astrophysics, math or computer science.

The panel will address why collaboration with researchers from other parts of the world are essential to success in the endeavor, and examine the importance of Black, Latino, and female participation in space exploration and settlement.

Ayana Arce (Duke University)

Ebony McGee (Vanderbilt University)

Tarek Echekki  (North Carolina State University)

Rhonda Sharpe (Moderator, Duke University)

LUNCH: 12:15-1:15pm

PANEL#3: 1:30-2:30pm:  Rayla 2212 : Afrofuturism, Space and the Imagination

Ytasha L. Womack is author of the soon to be released book Afrofuturism: Black Sci fi and Fantasy Culture (Lawrence Hill Books, Fall 2013) as well as creator of the eBook and multimedia series Rayla 2212 .  Womack will discuss the creation of the Rayla 2212 series, a story that follow Rayla Illmatic, a war strategist and her quest for identity as she travels through space, time and virtual worlds in an effort to find the missing Neo Astronauts and to restore her planet back to its utopian roots.

Craig Stevenson & Cory Stevenson will create original digital and graphic arts highlighting the history of Planet Hope, the distant Earth-like planet that Rayla Illmatic calls home in the Rayla 2212 series. This series will debut at the conference.

PANEL#4:  2:45-4:15pm:  Logistics of Space Exploration (Specific Planets) and Space Travel

NASA may have retired its space shuttles, but its recent historic rover landing on Mars marks a new beginning for the nation’s space program.  Virgin Galactic, headed by wireless leader Richard Branson, is one of several private companies throughout the world launching commercial flights. Although such companies are currently partnering with celebrities and millionaires to popularize their escapades, the goal is to make commercial space flights accessible to the average citizen. The panel will not only inform participants about space settlement endeavors and the issues involved, but also discuss how those invested in space colonization can balance scientific advances with ethics and humanity.

Derrick Pitts (Franklin Institute in Philadelphia)

Jarita Holbrook (University of the Western Cape)

Jeff Foust (Spacereview.com)

Arlie O. Petters (Moderator, Duke University)