Dr. Diya Abdo

Diya Abdo is the Lincoln Professor of English in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Guilford College. A second-generation Palestinian refugee born and raised in Jordan, Dr. Abdo’s teaching, research, and scholarship focus on Arab women writers and Arab and Islamic feminisms. She has also published poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Her first book AMERICAN REFUGE: True Stories of the Refugee Experience was published by Steerforth Press in 2022.

In 2015, Dr. Abdo founded Every Campus A Refuge (ECAR), which advocates for housing refugee families on college and university campus grounds and supporting them in their resettlement. The flagship chapter at Guilford College, now one of several ECAR campuses, has hosted 86 refugees thus far, including 16 Afghan evacuees.

Dr. Abdo is the recipient of the J.M. Kaplan Fund’s Innovation Prize (2021), Campus Compact’s Thomas Ehrlich Civically Engaged Faculty Award (2019), Gulf South Summit’s Outstanding Service-Learning Collaboration in Higher Education Award (2017), and The Washington Center’s Civic Engagement in Higher Education Award (2017). In 2018, she was named a finalist in the Arab Hope Makers Award. She has been making presentations about ECAR far and wide, including at the White House and the United Nations Headquarters in New York. Dr. Abdo sits on the Advisory Board of the Community Sponsorship Hub.

She lives in Greensboro, NC with her partner and two daughters. To learn more, visit the Guilford College Faculty profile page or watch Dr. Abdo’s TEDtalk.