The University of Central Arkansas’ Muslim Students Association gives Muslim students a place to gather together and educate other students about Islam.
Muslim Students Association was created and built by muslim students who wanted to have an organization that represented their religious beliefs, similar to other religious RSO’s on campus.
The MSA has been on UCA’s campus for about two years now, Assistant professor and MSA advisor Sonia Toudji said.
MSA likes to bring in speakers and hold events to educate students and staff about Islam.
Last semester, MSA and Social Justice League hosted an event, “Islam without the Phobia” where Imam Mahmoud Hassanein spoke about bringing awareness to Islam and helping combat the stereotypes involving terrorism and Islam.
The students also hold events where students give powerpoint presentations, give away prizes and ask questions pertaining to Islam, Toudji said.
Graduate student Saliou Ouattara said that MSA is currently working on planning some events to educate UCA on Islam.
Their was a similar organization to MSA before Toudji said but it only lasted about one or two years.
Senior Rahmatallah Bukhair said that MSA has about 40 members currently, but that they are also looking to expand.
MSA also is a place for students to come together for Islamic celebrations like the end of Ramadan.
Ramadan is a month of fasting that starts at the end of May and ends in June, from sunrise to sunset.
MSA has set a goal to find a place for muslims to pray on campus. Muslims are required to pray five times a day: Sunrise, Midday, late afternoon, just after sunset and one more time before midnight.
Muslims must also perform a washing ritual to clean themselves before praying.
Bukhair said it is hard to find a place to pray in the middle of the day, so they are look into getting a room in the Student Center.
Muslim Student Association meets weekly in Torreyson West at 6 p.m. on Tuesdays.
Image Courtesy of Muslim Student Association UCA Facebook