Boston College is having its first Islamic Awareness Week from March 14 to March 18. The week is sponsored by Boston College’s Muslim Student Association, a group that aims to educate people about Islam while also bringing Muslim students together. The week will feature lectures, presentations, open questions, and more. A number of the events, like the opportunity to try on a hijab, will occur on O’Neill Plaza during the school day, making them visible and accessible to every student.
One of the greatest accomplishments of this week is that it brings awareness to the Muslim Student Association while also normalizing the idea of Islam and Islamic culture at BC. Many students might not be aware of the Association’s existence, and an increased awareness of the group as well as the various programs they put on benefits both the Association itself and the student body as a whole. This week includes many events that open up the Islamic community and allow other students to experience and better understand their culture. Events such as an invitation to attend the weekly Islamic prayer and listen to a sermon are good ways to educate students about the basic beliefs and experiences of a Muslim student at BC. This kind of cultural education is essential and extremely beneficial for all college students.
The week could benefit from an accessible lecture or event addressing the modern political climate in regards to Islam. These issues can be extremely controversial and a simple informative discussion surrounding them would benefit and inform BC students. In planning future events and programs such as this, the inclusion of this type of talk would be a useful and worthwhile addition to the schedule. The lecture planned for this week regarding Jesus’ role in Islam is a positive and educational opportunity, but an expansion into more accessible and widespread issues affecting Islam would be a useful addition.
This week is an effective way of bringing Islamic culture at BC to the fore and increasing knowledge of the Muslim Student Association. In the future the MSA should continue to promote and sponsor these kinds of events to educate and increase awareness. Hopefully, this week will become a yearly occurrence at BC and will expand to include more events and lectures.
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