By Mwayad Aldarawish’24, BUF Student Intern
Ramadan is a significant month for Muslims around the world, and it is no different for students at Bethlehem University in the West Bank. Although the university is a Catholic institution, it recognizes the importance of Ramadan to its Muslim students and provides accommodations and support during the month-long observance.
One of the most significant ways in which Bethlehem University supports its Muslim students during Ramadan is by adjusting its operating hours. The university understands that students who are observing the fast need to break their fast before sunset, and therefore, it may close earlier than usual during Ramadan. This accommodation allows students to have ample time to break their fast and participate in evening prayers.
The university also provides spaces for students to pray and hold religious services during the month. Muslim students can use designated rooms or prayer areas on campus to perform their daily prayers, which is especially helpful for those who may not have access to mosques or other religious spaces outside of the university.
In addition to prayer spaces, Bethlehem University may also organize educational and cultural events related to Ramadan. These events are open to students of all faiths and aim to increase understanding and awareness of Islamic culture and tradition. For example, the university may host talks or seminars on the significance of Ramadan or organize an iftar meal, which is the meal that breaks the fast after sunset, for students and staff to share.
Overall, Bethlehem University recognizes and respects the religious traditions of its Muslim students, faculty, and staff and strives to provide the necessary accommodations and support during Ramadan. This commitment to inclusivity and respect for diversity is a testament to the university’s values and its mission to provide a welcoming and supportive environment for all students.