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Professor Wadhia to deliver keynote at UNC Conference on Race, Class, Gender, and Ethnicity

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Penn State Law professor Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia will deliver the keynote address at the 19th Annual Conference on Race, Class, Gender, and Ethnicity at the University of North Carolina School of Law on Feb. 28 in Chapel Hill, N.C.

The conference, entitled “’Southern Hospitality?’ The Immigrant Experience in the U.S. South,” considers the many, often daily, challenges that immigrants living in Southern communities may experience. Attendees, including leading practitioners, academics, and advocates, as well as local community members, will examine topics including labor, education, family, and the criminal justice system from the immigrant perspective.

Wadhia will address President Barack Obama’s recent executive action on immigration and her related research on the use of prosecutorial discretion in immigration law. She will also share some of the work being undertaken in Penn State Law’s Center for Immigrants’ Rights Clinic, which she directs. Her talk begins at 9:30 a.m.

Wadhia, Samuel Weiss Faculty Scholar and clinical professor of law at Penn State Law, is an expert on immigration law and one of the nation’s leading scholars on the role of prosecutorial discretion in immigration law. Her scholarship in this area has served as a foundation for scholars, advocates, and government officials seeking to understand or design a strong prosecutorial discretion policy. Her work identifies the historical role of prosecutorial discretion in immigration law, the extent to which some acts of discretion operate as a benefit, and the dynamic role and need for transparency, sound procedures, and accountability. Her book, Beyond Deportation: The Role of Prosecutorial Discretion in Immigration Cases, will be published this year by New York University Press and is the first on the topic.

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