On Thursday, January 12th, IIIT hosted a graduation ceremony for students of the Winter Program 2017. There were 29 students who participated in the graduation ceremony, along with professors who taught in this program. Those professors included Dr. Hisham Al-Talib, Dr. Abubaker Al-Shingieti, Dr. Jasser Auda, Dr. Zainab Alwani, and Dr. Ahmed Alwani. They all warmly congratulated students and remarked on their accomplishments.
This year, students from seven countries, such as Canada, China, France, Pakistan, UAE, and the United States , studied together at this program. They learned not only from faculty expertsin Islamic studies, but also from their cohorts. Their learning experiencewere largely enriched by the diversity present in the room, as characterized by one of the students, Hayat Abdelal’s (United States, Junior at Drew University) comment:
“Meeting everyone in the program who all came from different places of the world and diverse backgrounds was a bonus of the program. Learning from each other and about how are range of studies brought us to the same program was illuminating. Our conversations in and outside of the classroom were very stimulating. We were able to get to know each other not only as peers, but also as friends. Developing connections with peers with similar interests was a great opportunity.”
After completing 31 classes on Islamic thought, history, philosophy and practice taught by 15 faculties from various academic institutions, including George Mason, Georgetown, and University of Toledo, students undeoubtedly broadened their academic horizons, obtaining new insights on what Islam means. One Muslim studentfrom Pakistan stated:
“Being an ordinary Muslim, I feel that our Islam is the same that which local religious leaders taught us as we least bother to understand what Quran is asking for. It, Quran, demands its in-depth review by all humans, not just by the Muslim leaders and/or students of Islamic studies.”
After participating in the Winter Student Program, that student came to see Quran differently. Prior to the program, he never thought Islam needed such a deep understanding. According to him, the program was an eye-opening learning experience.
TFI appreciates the great opportunity to host such engaging students throughout Winter Student Program 2017. We convey a hearty congratulations on the achievement of this year’s cohorts. We look forward to hearing from all WSP alumni!