With the immense diversity seen at Malden High School, a group of students wanted to start a Muslim Student Association (MSA) as an NHS service project to support their community of Muslims. They hoped to foster a sense of community for the members by allowing them to connect, share experiences, and celebrate their diversity. The founders behind this club are alumni Zineb Laghzaoui, and Editor-in-Chief of The Blue and Gold Hadjar Yousfi.
The club aims to educate others on Islam and allow others to get closer to it. “There’s also been a misconception on the religion itself which we also hope to clear up and just educate others on it,” said Ali Zoulgami, Vice President of the club.
On November 21st, the MSA had its first meeting of this school year. The club is hosted in room B336 with the advisor being Italian teacher Alessia Guglielmi.
During this first meeting, they introduced their officers and gave an overview of the goal and different information about the club. They also shared a duaa, a special prayer, to bring everyone together. After introducing everyone to the club, they did a couple of icebreakers before ending the club on a fun game of Would You Rather.
The club officers know that not many people know about the MSA, especially among Muslim students. So, they are taking action to spread the word. They have done this by putting up posters around the school as well as by promoting their club on social media on their Instagram @maldenmsa.
The officers did this in the hopes that whether you see a poster in the hallway or scroll through Instagram, you will know there is a place where you can be a part of something fun and share your thoughts with others.
The MSA has made it their mission to pursue an environment that helps people understand Islam better by clearing up any misconceptions about it.
Sabrina Kharkhach, the Event Coordinator of the club, explained that “people have misconceptions that you have to be Muslim to be a part of the community or learn more about it, but that's far from the truth! One of our goals is to promote a better understanding of Islam after all!”
They do this by planning different educational activities. They aim to create a friendly community for students, where everyone feels welcome and supported, regardless of their background, and have left the club open to everyone—not only Muslims, but anyone who is interested as well.
Freshman May Ihiri, a new member of the club, explained that she, “wanted a chance to get closer to Islam and get more information on it. I also wanted to gain more Muslim friends and educate them and others on information they possibly don’t know about either.”
“There’s also a lot of fun games to participate in and enjoy with fellow Muslims,” Imane Agoumad, a freshman, added.
“I like the community feeling it gives for all of us as well as the activities we do, it feels natural and just the overall vibe,” Kharkhach added.
Multiple members have also stated how this club has allowed them to voice their experiences and opinions, Yassir Halaissi said, “this club lets us share our experiences on a bunch of topics that regard Islam.”
Secretary Shiza Zahid added that “I wanted to be able to connect with a group of people who had similar beliefs to me, to be able to meet more people.”
Ultimately, the MSA is off to a great start of their second year active at Malden High School and they cannot wait to make a bigger impact on the community.