Harvard University Announces Plans To Appoint A Full-Time Muslim ChaplainBy Emily Marks, UniversityHerald Reporter
Harvard University has announced its plans to appoint a full-time Muslim chaplain. This comes in the midst of President Trump's immigration order. It was reported that several universities in the United States have urged its student and faculty community to forego international travel after President Trump signed the executive order banning travel to and from countries of concern. Individuals from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen will not be allowed entry from the nation.
Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger urged community members and visiting scholars from the banned countries to suspend their plans for international travel. Stanford University's Bechtel International Center took to Facebook to warn nationals of the banned countries to refrain from travelling.
Marshall University President Jerome A. Gilbert confirmed that they are reviewing how the executive order of President Donald Trump will affect its student community. Gilbert also noted that they will do everything possible to assist and retain all of their international students.
Recently, Harvard University President Drew Faust emphasized that the institution will continue to commit to internationalism. She also focused on the significant role that the presence of international scholars and students plays in helping the U.S. higher education industry to thrive.
Faust also revealed Harvard's plan to appoint a full-time Muslim chaplain. The search will be led by a mixed committee of students, faculty and staff chaired by Harvard Divinity School Professor Ousmane Kane.
Kane, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Professor of Contemporary Islamic Religion and Society, said that the position is "very important and timely" since the Muslim community has been feeling marginalized and persecuted with the events happening at a national level. The chaplain would be someone who supports members of the community and, at the same time, be someone who can enlighten the wider university body about the Islamic faith.
Boston Globe reported that Iranian doctoral student at Harvard Mitra Akhtari admitted that the past two days have been the worst in her life. She and her family arrived in the U.S. in 2001 and she is now a U.S. citizen. The past few days were hurtful since the discrimination is no longer done by individuals but by institutions of the country.