I’m so delighted that Ahmed has now received this award which celebrates his commentin a position attributes as a terrific scholar
The author is programme coordinator for Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, who holds the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Research at American College
Muslims are dealing with assaults from all instructions in at present’s America. In current weeks, extra stories of Muslims being harassed and threatened in public, from Virginia, to Texas, to Oregon, have heightened the sense of hostility many Muslim People have lengthy felt of their on a regular basis lives.
Fortunately, there are nonetheless moments of nice delight for American Muslims on this poisonous setting. On Might 10, Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Research at American College (AU), was awarded the 2016-17 Faculty of Worldwide Service (SIS) Scholar/Instructor of the Yr award. As a number one school member of SIS, one among America’s prime ten faculties of worldwide affairs, Ahmed acquired this award in recognition of his “revolutionary and essential scholarship” and his “devoted, rigorous, and galvanizing mentoring of our college students.” Joined by his household and two prime assistants, Ahmed was introduced this prestigious award earlier than a standing ovation of SIS employees and school.
Awarded by SIS Dean James Goldgeier, who described Ahmed as “a legend,” the award ceremony warmly celebrated Ahmed’s achievements as a member of the SIS school. Goldgeier spoke extremely of Ahmed’s contributions to each his subject and the scholar expertise in SIS. He additionally mentioned the super influence of Ahmed’s quartet of research analyzing relations between the West and the Muslim world, highlighting particularly Ahmed’s forthcoming guide, Journey into Europe: Islam, Immigration, and Id (Brookings Press).
Ahmed’s time at AU has been merely exceptional. Ahmed, who arrived at AU in Fall 2001, was within the midst of educating his second-ever class at AU when that fateful aircraft flew into the Pentagon on Sep 11. At that second, he knew that the remainder of his life and profession have to be devoted to bridging the now large divide between the West and the Muslim world. Within the years since, Ahmed has written a number of books and performs, a set of poetry, and numerous articles on this pursuit. He has additionally produced two movies, commonly appeared within the international media, and delivered numerous lectures all over the world.
This award is especially particular for Ahmed in mild of the challenges he has confronted in reaching this pinnacle in his profession. Ahmed arrived within the US in 2000, the place, as a Pakistani Muslim, he would out of the blue be thrust into a brand new and sophisticated cultural surroundings with out the privilege of merely turning into a impartial observer of American society. Ahmed had come to the US at a time when a lot of the general public discourse was about Islam and was swirling with misconceptions concerning the religion, when Muslims are continuously on the defensive about their religion and tradition. Regardless of these challenges, Ahmed has by no means sought to cover his religion or tradition, however moderately to make use of his distinctive perspective and his Islamic religion as the idea for constructing bridges. That is an accomplishment by which all Muslims can take satisfaction and use as inspiration for dwelling out their true id. If Ahmed can each be a training Muslim and a public determine who contributes at this excessive a degree, who’s to say different Muslims can’t.
The impression of Ahmed’s award additionally displays within the lives of his college students. When Ahmed and I first met in 2013, I used to be simply one other American school scholar with little or no worldwide expertise. I used to be the one male scholar in Ahmed’s course on Islam in America, and Ahmed used to joke that I merely couldn’t get sick and miss a category, as I would go away our gender wholly unrepresented. Two years later, mere weeks after graduating with my bachelor’s diploma, I used to be provided the chance to take over as his chief of employees.
Might this nice instructor stay uncowed by rampant Islamophobia and train the scholars of American College, America, and the world easy methods to mild the trail to peace. I’m so delighted that Ahmed has now acquired this award which celebrates his exceptional attributes as an incredible scholar/instructor.
Revealed in The Categorical Tribune, Might 15th, 2017.
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