When applying to Fuqua, I was seeking a nurturing environment that embraces diverse cultures and fosters a sense of belonging. I plan to use my MBA to pivot into sustainability and renewable energies after working in oil and gas. Knowing that the energy industry is dynamic, constantly evolving, and demanding of innovative solutions to its unique challenges, Fuqua’s programming resonated deeply with my career aspirations. From clubs to dedicated faculty expertise and the Center for Energy, Development and the Global Environment (EDGE), I was drawn to Fuqua’s specialized focus on energy, but I was also looking for a community that respects and accommodates diverse religious backgrounds.
Fuqua’s commitment to inclusivity and global perspective played a pivotal role in my decision-making process. As a Muslim student at Fuqua, my experience has been one of inclusivity, support, and a strong sense of community. I spoke with Adam Malik, and he helped me during the application process. I wrote in my admissions essay about my goal to support the Muslim community once on campus through the Muslims in Business Club, which I joined as a first-year student when Adam was co-president.
Building Community with the Muslims in Business Club
Now as co-president of the club, my goal is to support its members during the different phases of the school year, create a community for Muslim students, and create an inclusive environment at school. One way we do that is by organizing interfaith events in collaboration with other faith-based clubs and interfaith dialogues to talk about our experiences and learn about others.
Moreover, the Fuqua community itself plays a significant role in fostering a supportive environment for Muslim students. There are clubs that emphasize cultural and religious diversity, providing a platform for students to connect, celebrate cultural events, and support each other. For example, the Indus Club helped sponsor an Iftar event during Ramadan last year, giving 100 students the opportunity to experience what an Iftar is.
Duke’s Resources for Muslims Students
I was surprised when I joined Fuqua to learn about the resources the university has to offer. There is a dedicated prayer room at Fuqua. The professors can offer accommodations in case it is needed during Ramadan, and Halal food is available on campus, including at Brodhead Center.
Duke’s Center for Muslim Life (CML) is another vital resource I’ve relied on at Duke. It is a welcoming space that supports the religious and cultural needs of Muslim students, and it connects Muslims students across campus. CML has a full-time Imam, organizes Jumu’ah prayer and provides Iftar every day during Ramadan. It is a critical resource as it offers educational programs, community engagement, spiritual support and advocacy for all Muslim students at Duke. Their events are also an opportunity to get involved with students from other schools and get out of the Fuqua bubble.
Overall, as a Muslim student at Fuqua, I have felt comfortable, supported, and embraced by the inclusive culture of the institution. The availability of resources for prayer, accommodation of dietary needs, and the supportive community have collectively contributed to making my experience at Fuqua enriching and memorable.