The student news site of Jones College Prep High School


The student news site of Jones College Prep High School


The student news site of Jones College Prep High School


Breaking barriers

Muslim Student Alliance (MSA) hopes to create a more connective and inclusive environment for Jones students
Graphic Credit to Ramiyah Lee ’24

In a stride towards cultural diversity and inclusivity, a Muslim Student’s Association (MSA) club was built at Jones this year. It strives to promote a sense of unity and understanding among its members and the wider school community.

“It’s for students to come together with a Muslim background to connect and engage with each other to build a community at Jones for themselves,” said club sponsor Sajida Syed.

One of the MSA’s co-founders shared her experience transitioning from a school with a substantial Muslim population to one where she found herself in the minority, an experience that several students who attend the MSA can relate to.

“It was a culture shock to some people because most of the people here aren’t used to it… they don’t have that many Muslims around them,” said Nazrin Iskandarova ‘26. “For them, it was kind of surprising [that I was Muslim] and for me, it was kind of cool. I went from a school with a lot of Muslims to a school with barely any, so it was cool that I got to educate people”.

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Several other students also echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the educational role the MSA aims to have.

“I want us to educate more people in Jones, specifically because the community is really small. I think it’d be nice to educate people,” said Nermena Donlagic ‘26.

This educational focus was evident in their initial meeting, which Donlagic said was informal and fun.

“We drank tea and talked… I feel like in other clubs the people aren’t as close… We’re friends,” Donlagic said.

A standout feature of the inaugural meeting was the remarkable diversity within the club, a testament to the multifaceted nature of the Muslim community.

“I enjoyed getting to know other Muslim people from Jones. It was just a really great experience… The Muslim community is really diverse. It was great to see that,” said co-founder Zoha Ali ‘26.

Beyond fostering friendship and understanding, the MSA also plans to educate, advocate, and enlighten its members and the broader community about the challenges faced by Muslims worldwide.

“It’s important because it helps raise awareness about issues to other people who are non-Muslims… Since we already have a Christian club, and a Jewish club, why not have a club for the few Muslims here?” said Iskandarova.

In the face of challenges, Jones College Prep’s Muslim Student’s Association (MSA) emerges as a beacon of cultural understanding and unity. With its diverse membership, the MSA strives to bridge cultural gaps within the school community for a more inclusive future at Jones.

One significant hurdle that the club might have to face is the small number of members since there are very few Muslims at Jones.

“Since we don’t have that many people, it might be hard to have these events,” said Ali.

Another pressing issue is the lack of a suitable space for prayer, as per their religious obligations, Muslims are required to pray five times a day throughout the day. Without a designated space for prayer, these students may struggle to find a quiet and appropriate environment to carry out their religious duties.

A space for prayer at the school, according to the students, is a much-needed addition.

“If the people who work in the office give us that space we need, I think that would really help us a lot,” Zoha said.

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Zain Moustafa '26
Zain Moustafa '26, Journalism I

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