We’re right in the middle of Ramadan (Mar. 10 – Apr. 9), which is an important Islamic holiday observed by Muslims each year. It’s a month of fasting, prayer, reflection, and community.

Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne strives to be an inclusive environment for students of all cultures and backgrounds. The best way to get to know each perspective is by joining student organizations like the Muslim Student Association (MSA), which was established in May 2023.

We sat down with Ivy Tech Fort Wayne and Warsaw’s Director of Community Engagement Kenan Habibic and MSA President Rachelle McCoy who shared a little more about their organization.

It’s for anyone trying to get an understanding of their classmates or also an understanding of what Islam is. It’s a chance for us to have community and conversation.

– Rachelle McCoy | Muslim Student Association President

What is the Muslim Student Association?

Rachelle: “Our mission is to bring together Muslim students but also bring more awareness to what Islam is as a religion.”

Kenan: “Our purpose is for Muslim and non-Muslim students to socialize, network, and share their unique cultures. Our audience is anyone looking to learn a little bit about the religion as well as their Muslim classmates.”

How did you get involved?

Kenan: “The reason I decided to start MSA was because I noticed Ivy Tech has a pretty large Muslim community, and I wanted an opportunity for us to get to network and know each other a little bit more.”

Rachelle: “I initially joined because I just wanted to be amongst people who are in the same religion but also have the same values and practices I did.”

Why should students join?

Rachelle: “It’s for anyone trying to get an understanding of their classmates or also an understanding of what Islam is. It’s a chance for us to have community and conversation.”

Kenan: “MSA is an opportunity for our Muslim students to get together, network, and help each other succeed during their time here at Ivy Tech. It’s also an opportunity for non-Muslim students to learn about the religion and different cultures.”

How can you join?

Kenan: “If you’re looking to join our organization, join our WhatsApp group chat. We have posters up all over campus with QR codes. There, you can learn about our future meetings.”

What are some things you’d like others to know about Ramadan?

Rachelle: “During Ramadan, there’s always the question of ‘you don’t have food and water during the day?’ While that is true, we are thinking about our relationship with God—who we call in Islam, Allah—and think about how we can be a better person for ourselves, Allah, and the community.”

MSA tries to meet monthly to discuss events they want to plan. You can find their upcoming events by visiting Ivy Life or emailing Kenan at khabibic@ivytech.edu.

As the organization nears its first anniversary, leaders with the organization say they plan to do more volunteer work and hold more group bonding activities outside of school, even inviting Muslim students from outside the Ivy Tech community.

Take a look at their latest event:

Iftar Gathering

On March 20th, the Muslim Student Association held their third annual Iftar Gathering where everyone was invited to share in the celebration. Iftar is the fast-breaking meal for Muslims each day during the month of Ramadan.  

Dozens of Ivy Tech students, employees, and community members joined in for fun, celebration, and great food from Halal Eats.

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, long- and short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor's degree.