Local foundation partners to support Muslim students

Designed for graduate students at the School of Public Health, the Al Rashid Education Foundation will offer an annual scholarship to a Muslim student beginning September 2016.

Katie Willis - 12 July 2016

In partnership with the School of Public Health, the Al Rashid Education Foundation is offering a new scholarship to benefit an incoming or continuing Muslim student at the School of Public Health, beginning in September 2016. The scholarship is valued at $5,000.

Sameeh Salama, president of the Al Rashid Education Foundation (AREF) says that education is a top priority for the Foundation and its mother organization, the Arabian Muslim Association (AMA) in Edmonton.

"The AMA's focus on education began in 1987 with the creation of the Edmonton Islamic Academy (formerly Edmonton Islamic School). The Academy serves almost 1,500 students from pre-school to grade 12 and is the largest school dedicated to serving the Muslim community in North America."

Establishing a scholarship foundation for students at post-secondary institutions, AREF, was an important and logical next step.

Sameed Salama"The mandate of AREF is to work with our community in supporting students financially and through mentorship programs in their pursuit of post-secondary education," explains Salama.

"As one of the leading research institutions in the country, it was integral for AREF to establish strong ties with the University of Alberta. It's a natural partnership-we want to support our students in receiving the best education possible, and the University of Alberta is where they'll get it."

Designed for graduate students at the School of Public Health, the AREF scholarship has two requirements: membership with the University of Alberta Muslim Students' Association and a demonstrated track record of academic and community leadership.

"The School is very pleased to partner with the Al Rashid Education Foundation in this endeavour," says Kue Young, dean in the School of Public Health.

"The School of Public Health is very impressed by the Foundation's understanding and recognition of the importance of public health. Their choice of public health as the field of study for this scholarship is indeed inspired."

As Salama explains, the mandate and values of the School resonate with AREF. "Public Health is diverse and interdisciplinary. So, too, are our students. By establishing a scholarship, we hope that our students will be part of the group that is paving the way for a healthier future."

The dates and process for applications will be announced through the School of Public Health website. For more information visit the AREF website or School of Public Health awards page.

"Thank you to Dean Kue Young and Vice-Dean Faith Davis for their forward-thinking approach and leadership in helping us to set up this scholarship," says Salama. "I feel this relationship will pave the way for future scholarships and opportunities within the University of Alberta."

"We are pleased to have cultivated this new partnership with AREF to educate and support public health leaders of tomorrow," says Faith Davis, vice-dean in the School of Public Health.