The University of Iowa

In the news: Islam Awareness Week hopes to increase understanding of the religion

April 10th, 2018

Members of the UI Muslim Student Association: sophomore Tartil Ali, freshman Ebteehal Kmail, sophomore Seeme Kotoh, sophomore Amani Ali, junior Ayah Taha, junior Taimaa Shoukih, and sophomore Suha Suleman throw snowball after passing out flowers for Islam appreciation week on the T. Ann Cleary Walkway on Apr. 9, 2018. (Katie Goodale/The Daily Iowan)

By Julia DiGiacomo, The Daily Iowan

For members of University of Iowa Muslim Student Association, the upcoming week is dedicated to educating others on the basic beliefs and traditions of their religion.

Islam Awareness Week is marked by events intended to increase general student understanding of the faith.

Walking across campus Monday afternoon, Muslim Association members presented passersby with colorful flowers. They gifted “flowers of faith” attached with quotes about Islam or verses from the Quran.

A play titled Muslims in Iowa will run at Hancher at 7 p.m. Tuesday, focusing on the experiences of Muslims. It will be free and open to the public.

On Wednesday, the Muslim Association will set up a booth from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the T. Anne Cleary Walkway for its annual “Hijab It Up.” Women are encouraged to try on a hijab to learn more about its meaning.

Association member Ebteehal Ismail said many people don’t know what a hijab really is (the scarf some Muslim women wear for modesty and religious purposes).

“The reason we don’t consider this cultural appropriation is because we want people whose intentions are pure to come,” Ismail said. “If people are coming with intentions purely to learn about the religion, then we don’t have any issue with that.”