In the name of God, the Merciful, the Beneficent


Dear Zaytuna Supporter    


Salam alaykum wa rahmatullah.


Admissions at Zaytuna

Zaytuna College offers a Bachelor's Degree in Islamic Law and Theology and an 8-week Summer Arabic Intensive program.  We recently invited prospective students to learn about our undergraduate and summer programs during an online open house, featuring Imam Zaid Shakir, Dr. Ingrid Mattson, and Zaytuna staff and students.To learn more, contact us at admissions@zaytuna.org


At Zaytuna College, our curriculum is collaboratively designed by a diverse faculty educated at traditional institutions of learning from Africa to India, as well as at western academic institutions such as Yale, Cornell, and Stanford. 


Our learning objectives are crafted from the term adab, traditionally understood to be a primary goal of a meaningful education: 

  • acquire learning tools; 
  • demonstrate high moral character; 
  • analyze subjects in relation to each other; 
  • build community through service.

We believe the Islamic intellectual tradition offers an important contribution to global conversations that shape our common destiny. To prepare Muslim leaders of tomorrow, Zaytuna College now offers one undergraduate degree: a Bachelor of Arts in Islamic Law and Theology. Each student is required to take four-and-a half years of Arabic, eight courses in Islamic and comparative law, and three courses each in theology, comparative religion, and logic. Classes on rhetoric, the Qur'an, Hadith, Prophetic biography, spiritual psychology, the rise and fall of civilizations, U.S. and Islamic history, the history of science, astronomy, philosophy, literature, ethics, and politics round out the curriculum. Community service projects and civic engagement opportunities enable students to put theory into practice, and a senior capstone project allows them to integrate and apply all their previous coursework.


In all aspects of college life, we emphasize that as God's creation we are interconnected, bound by our shared humanity and common dreams of a sustainable future. God willing, this awareness will penetrate the professions our graduates pursue, the families they raise, the communities they inhabit, and the peace they preserve. Graduates leave Zaytuna with the conviction that human flaws can be overcome through study and service and the understanding that they are beginning a lifelong moral and intellectual journey.


Together we will continue to prepare the Muslim leaders of tomorrow. Please support Zaytuna College with your prayers and donations.

Zaytuna Leadership Connects with Muslim Communities
This month Zaytuna College leadership went on the road to connect with Muslim communities in Georgia and California. On March 11 President Hamza Yusuf visited the Muslim community of Atlanta, Georgia, to acknowledge its generous support and share a progress update from Zaytuna College. After attending a dinner reception  which raised $200,000 to support the college, Hamza Yusuf delivered his keynote presentation, Liberal Education: Healing Self and Society, to approximately three hundred guests. 

The following weekend, Chairman of the Board Zaid Shakir and Vice President of Administration Waheed Rasheed travelled to Orange County, California, to meet with Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi, Religious Director of Islamic Society of Orange County (ISOC). Zaid Shakir and Dr. Siddiqi spoke at a community lecture titled Who Stole my Iman: Negotiating Modern Theological Fault Lines. Following the lecture, Waheed Rasheed shared an update from Zaytuna College and announced plans for a benefit reception in May 2013 in Southern California.


Finally, the Prohibitions of the Tongue class is still available for download. Donate $60 and download the class for yourself or as a gift to friends and family.


A Global Challenge to Islamophobia


On April 19th and 20th, the 4th Annual International Islamophobia Conference will be held at UC Berkeley's Boalt Law School. The conference is a forum for a growing global network of scholars, researchers and community activists engaged in the study of Islamophobia. 


This year's conference, From Theorizing Islamophobia to Systematic Documentation, will focus on the "othering" of Islam, the racialization of Muslims, and the institutional effects of Islamophobia around the world.  The conference is cosponsored by Zaytuna College, GTU Center for Islamic Studies, San Francisco State University and the Islamophobia Research and Documentation Project of the Center for Race and Gender at UC Berkeley.  


The conference will be streaming live and for free at www.islamophobiacon.com, and papers presented at the conference will be published in the bi-annual Islamophobia Studies Journal, founded and edited by Zaytuna College co-founder Dr. Hatem Bazian.


 Ramsey Clark at Zaytuna: No Easy Answers


On March 6th, Zaytuna College hosted a controversial conversation with former United States Attorney General Ramsey Clark.


Clark focused on his strident opposition to American foreign policy, militarism, and what many see as the development of a velvet-gloved police state. Now 86 years old, Clark has long been a vocal opponent of US wars and occupations, the use of depleted uranium weapons and weaponized drones, the CIA rendition program, torture centers and prisons abroad, and the erection of the US surveillance state in the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy. 


Due to his controversial positions such as his legal defense of war criminals, an attendee read a statement denouncing Clark and Zaytuna College for hosting him. "Everyone, no matter how hated, deserves a credible defense," Clark replied when asked how he justified providing legal counsel to Slobodan Milosevic and Saddam Hussein, who have the blood of so many innocent Muslims on their hands.


When challenged about his condemnation of US intervention in Libya that led to the overthrow of Muammar Qaddafi, Clark explained that he did not oppose the use of force against Qaddafi, but believed only the United Nations was entitled to apply it. In his view, the US operation in Libya established a dangerous precedent in international relations:  the ability of any nation to attack a regime it does not condone.


By way of analogy, Clark pointed out that the United States has incarcerated nearly three million individuals -- many of whom are victims of unjust and inherently racist practices. If a foreign nation decided to attack the United States to liberate its prisoners, what moral argument could the United States make against this attack in light of the precedent we have set in Libya and elsewhere?


At Zaytuna College, we welcome opportunities to have challenging conversations about the most important issues of our time. Engaging those whose opinions differ from ours may make us uncomfortable, but it also makes us wiser. We are grateful to Ramsey Clark for the wisdom he shared and wish him the best in the twilight of his life.


Upcoming Events: Save the Dates
Zaytuna College will be hosting two events in California;
1. A benefit dinner reception in San Jose on May 18 and a conference
2. Benefit dinner reception on Memorial Day weekend (May 25-27) in Orange County.
Details of these two events will be announced by April 1st . We look forward to seeing you at these events.

Yours sincerely,


Zaid Shakir, Hamza Yusuf, and Hatem Bazian

Co-founders, Zaytuna College