Students learn about Muslim culture


Son Nguyen

(From Left) Muslim Student Assosication member Kamil Khan and Vice President Malak Khader play “Jeopardize” with student Khulud Khudur at the Meet-A-Muslim table outside the MSC, April 4, 2016.

The Muslim Student Association kicked off its Islam Awareness Week Monday with an on-campus event, “Meet a Muslim.”

The event took place at the Memorial Student Center from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

MSA’s staff and members were present to discuss and answer questions that people may have had about Muslims, as well as the religion of Islam. MSA also hosted a Jeopardy game at its table for participants that want to test their knowledge about Islamic culture.

Malak Khader, vice president of the MSA, said there are a lot of misconception about Muslims people, especially with presidential candidate like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, who are using Muslims as a political strategy.

“People are watching the media and the media portraying us in a very negative light,” Khader said. “So what we are trying to do show people there are local Muslims, true Muslims and we encourage people to come and ask about Islam.”

Khader said most people come to the events ask questions about women in Islam.

“People have the idea that we are suppressed or pressed,” Khader said. “So, generally, people like to ask about women and the values that they have in the religion and how they contribute or how they can contribute. Other general questions are just about our prayers and Ramadan, which is our month of fasting.”

When asked about the pro-Trump artwork that appeared at several locations on campus Monday morning, Khader said the stuff that people are seeing on the sidewalk about Trump is exactly why MSA is doing an awareness week.

“Because Trump is spreading lies about Muslims, and people are believing it,” Khader said. “So, the reason why we have Islam Awareness Week is to show what Islam truly is. So, I’m not too pleased about the propaganda on campus, but people are entitled to their opinions and they have their freedom of speech, so they are not doing anything wrong. But we are hoping to clear some misconception with our events.”

Suzann Al-Qawasmi, president of the MSA said the members of the organization meet every Friday at the INTO center.

“This year, we have the largest group of people than we ever had before, so we’ve been trying to do more events,” said Al-Qawasmi.

Son Nguyen can be contacted at [email protected].