To create an enhanced sense of belonging and inclusion, some campuses have announced Ramadan initiatives to support Muslim students fasting for the holiday. At the University of Southern California, students can pick up to-go boxes from dining halls for the morning suhoor meal that begins each day’s fast. Northeastern University (MA) students can also get breakfast boxes, plus there’s a shuttle service to a nearby mosque for evening prayers and iftar, fast-breaking meals, twice per week. Emerson College (MA) offers a halal station that provides food for iftar, as well as the to-go bags for suhoor. And this year they also have a Muslim chaplain on staff.
At Loyola University Chicago, Muslim chaplain Omer Mozaffar has boxes of dates – often eaten to break the fast – in his office, gifted from the university to distribute to Muslim students, he told National Public Radio. "The university historically has been very open and welcoming on matters related to Islam," he explained. "The dean of students is ready to send out a note to the faculty to let them know that fasting will be taking place and Eid prayers [marking the end of Ramadan] will be taking place afterward."
At HBCUs, "Many of the Muslim students who attend historically Black colleges and universities tend to feel better supported and more engaged than their counterparts at predominately white institutions," said Darnell Cole of USC's Center for Education, Identity and Social Justice.
Muslim student associations (MSAs) are also part of these enhanced inclusion efforts. "MSAs are built to support Muslim students in terms of their practice on college campuses. And Ramadan is, I think, a central part of that," Bushra Bangee of Muslim Students Association West, which oversees MSAs on the West Coast, told NPR.
Read more about a wide variety of efforts here.