Duke University will be the first school in the United States to sound the Muslim call to prayer over its school-wide speaker system.
The chant, known as the “adhan,” will be sounded at 1 PM every Friday across Duke's large North Carolina campus.
The move was made at the behest of the Duke Muslim Students Association, the university said in a statement.
The chant lasts about three minutes and will be “moderately amplified,” the statement said. All are welcome at the prayer service itself, which takes place in the basement of the Duke University chapel, the university added.
“This opportunity represents a larger commitment to religious pluralism that is at the heart of Duke’s mission,” said Christy Lohr Sapp, the chapel’s associate dean for religious life. “It connects the university to national trends in religious accommodation.”
According to Imam Adeel Zeb, the Muslim chaplain at Duke, “the collective Muslim community is truly grateful and excited about Duke’s intentionality toward religious and cultural diversity.”
While university officials said that most students at Duke were supportive of the move, some said that sounding the Muslim prayer was unfair, because prayers for other religious groups were not publicly sounded.
In one post on social media network Twitter, as student asks “Wonder how the left would react to Duke University broadcasting Christian prayers every Friday? Just kidding. I already know.”