The Muslims Students’ Association at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor strives to serve God by improving ourselves and our community through religious enrichment, social justice activism, community building, service, and alliances. We seek to create a culture of peace and inclusivity; increase and spread our knowledge of our Islamic tradition; uplift the voices of the oppressed and inspire progress; and heal and grow compassionately with one another.
Note from the President
In the Name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,
Growth is always hard and messy and unpredictable, and you never really know that it’s happening until you’re on the other side of the process, looking back at who you were and who you’ve become. As college students, we are endlessly aware of these truths, and even more so as believers traversing the ephemeral dunya. This life is a test, layered with multiple trials, as we have come to see so clearly over just the past year. We live in a time of increasingly intense strife and confusion, and I find myself grappling with the resilience to find my direction on this tumultuous course and have hope in my own future, let alone that of my family, my country, and my community.
This burden is almost impossible to bear, if not for the ultimate truth that only God knows what is best for all of us. He is the ultimate guide, and in surrendering to His plan of compassion and mercy, we know that we persevere from His will alone.
The certainty with which I stumbled into this MSA family is almost amusing, considering my expectations as an out-of-state student, far from home and looking for a place to begin living my legacy. The coalescence of the inspiring souls- both friends and mentors- that I met and the precise timings at which they entered my life were so serendipitous, they could only have ensued by God’s decree. The divinely woven tapestry of the MSA and our allies on this campus is astounding. I see it when I hear the insight shared from my peers at Mini-Qiyam or the wisdom imparted by our chaplain and our teachers at halaqas. I feel it when tranquility washes over me as we meet to pray in congregation, at Jumu’ah or even throughout the week, spiritually bonding for the sake of God. I believe it when injustice is struck down and integrity is upheld because righteous people from all walks of campus, regardless of age, faith, organization, or past struggles, unite under the banner of a greater future. I know that I am surrounded by people who constantly remind me of the everlasting omnipotence that is God, and what an inexpressible blessing that is! Even though I, like many, have dips and struggles in keeping and increasing my faith, my heart is healed and nourished with reflection and my community, and I am grateful.
Although it seems that our collective spiritual engagement, our connections, and our cultivated relationships are hindered by the world that we currently live in, I urge you to hold closely to those you cherish and seek out those who challenge you and earn your respect. Reflect on the significance of this time for your growth, and achieve even greater progress in turning to each other to lift up the whole community with you.
Our MSA has always been an amalgamation of the most analytical minds, the most creative thinkers, and the kindest souls that has reached every corner of the country and beyond, including our resourceful students, our loyal allies, and our supporting alumni. Alhamdulillah we are so blessed in the potential that God has bestowed upon us, but it is our duty to follow through with what He has ordained. Be unapologetic in your faith. Enjoin what is good and forbid what is wrong. Persist in those seemingly unattainable dreams of bettering yourself and the world around you, with your belief and your love for Allah and His messenger as your anchor. We must unequivocally stand up with our brothers and sisters for what we know to be true, just as we would expect them to do the same for us, and support the communities around us who are experiencing economic, social, or spiritual poverty. In this camaraderie, we can find the ingredients with which we can heal our own divisions, God willing.
I pray that our Muslim community continues to grow spiritually, professionally, and personally; in our relationships with each other and with God; through ease and through hardship. I pray that God protects us and never forsakes us, and that He grants what is best for us in this life and the next, instilling in us love, patience, and healing through His grace. And I pray that we never lose sight of what is right, our universal truths, and our purpose in this life, and that God continues to guide our hearts, remaining steadfast until we are reunited with Him.
Growth is hard and messy and unpredictable. But we will all go on to seek and achieve the best versions of ourselves by spreading decency and harmony insha’Allah. The key is remembering God in all that we strive for and all that we accomplish, and with that our hearts can find rest.
Meet the Board
Officially formed in 1964, the UM-MSA is the oldest MSA chapter in the country. These early waves of Muslims consisted mostly of international students, who were heavily involved in building the current MCA mosque.
Muneera Curtis forms the Islamic Circle in 1992, which eventually takes on the official title of the Muslim Students’ Association. MSA first launches website, weekly halaqas, Ramadan iftars, Islamic Awareness week, and jummah.
MSA expands its scope, becoming active in many different facets including community service and social justice. Campus jummahs also became more firmly established and more students began praying on campus instead of carpooling to MCA
Sacred Time Project, MSA’s annual conference, was first introduced along with Al-Risala a monthly, witty community newsletter
MSA wins Student Organization of the Year and VP Wajiha Shuttari launches Reflection Room campaign.
2007 - 2008
MSA wins Student Organization of the Year.
In this decade, the Muslim community on campus took several strides – the Chaplaincy was established by Tayssir Safi, the MSA launched its annual Alternative Spring Break service trip, and several new organizations were formed (Muslim Coalition, Islamic Society of Ahl-Ul Bayt, and the Felicity Foundation). The MSA continued to grow in number & diversity and see great visibility on campus, again being recognized as Student Organization of the Year in multiple years as well as receiving recognition for effective Teamwork and Collaboration.
In the campus community today, you can find any group of the 2,000+ Muslim students across campus praying daily prayers in congregation in any one of the several reflection rooms throughout campus. This beautiful, vibrant community has a rich history and has grown throughout the years by the Grace of God and through the efforts of those who have served in the past. Remember us in your prayers – we have a long way to go!