X International Islamic Free University
Ibrahim B. Syed,
Islamic Research Foundation International, Inc.
7102 W. Shefford Lane
Louisville, KY 40242-6462, USA
The Muslims rose to the zenith of civilization in a period of four decades.
This astonishing feat was based on Al-Islam's emphasis on learning. For more
than 1,000 years the Islamic Civilization remained the most advanced and
progressive in the world. This is because Al-Islam stressed the importance of
and held great respect for learning, forbade destruction, developed discipline
and respect for authority, and stressed tolerance for other religions. The
Muslims recognized excellence and hungered intellectually. The teachings of
Qur'an and Sunnah drove many Muslims to their accomplishments in all disciplines
Muslim Ummah Today
The present status of Muslim Ummah is of great concern to all Muslim
intellectuals. No one can deny that the Muslim Ummah occupies a position, which
is at the lowest rung of the ladder in the world. The share of Muslims in Nobel
Prizes and the Olympic Games is close to none. Muslims' contributions to
literature- both general and scientific- is marginal at best. It is very sad to
see the dismal status of Muslims in the present world. Muslims have been
economically exploited and politically subjugated. Economically, Muslims are
poor; in education they are backward; and in science and technology they are
marginal. The average literacy rate is around 35-38 per cent and in rural areas
in Muslim countries, the illiteracy rate among Muslim women is 93 to 97 percent.
This is contradictory to the message of the Qur'an and Prophet Muhammad (s).
What should be done
It appears that even 50 years after securing independence from colonial
powers, Muslim countries are entrapped in internal squabble and corruption.
Politicians are giving more attention to enriching their personal pockets and
attaining political power than the welfare and well being of the masses. It is
the dream of the Islamic Research Foundation and the concerned Muslims all over
the world to work for the intellectual growth of the Muslim Ummah. The best
solution to all the problems facing the Muslim Ummah is education. With
education, problems of poverty, ill health, low standard of living, etc., can be
solved. Hence I propose the establishment of an X International Islamic free
University in the United States. Why United States? Because U.S. is the only
super power with cutting edge science and technology including in the areas of
medicine, genetics, computers (Information Technology) and Robotics, Space
sciences and Military machinery. What is that X as a Prefix in the title of the
University? The X will be replaced by the name of the donor or anyone who will
fund the entire costs of establishing the University. A sum of one billion US
dollars are needed to establish a humble university to impart state of the art
knowledge to select students coming here from the Muslim world. Out of one
billion dollars, one-half or 500 million dollars will be deposited in an
Endowment Fund and the dividends from which will be used to meet the day to day
operational expenses of the University such as salaries of very high quality
faculty, boarding and lodging for the students, tuition fees, etc. And the other
half of one billion will be spent on the infrastructure-buildings, libraries,
Mosque, laboratories, computers, etc.,
The concept of Free University has not been floated so far. In the Free
university there is no tuition fee and laboratory fee. And there is no charge
for health insurance and medications. In addition the students will be given
free boarding and lodging. Furthermore the selected students will be provided
with airline tickets from the place of their origin to the place of the Free
University. A suitable stipend will be paid to each student to meet his or her
living expenses. In return the Free University exacts a very high standard of
student caliber equal to or better than those required by the Ivy League
colleges in USA. SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test), GRE, MCAT, LCAT, etc. scores
will be considered for admission. Admission is open to both male and female
students. The Free University will award Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate
degrees. The Free University will have schools of Natural Sciences, Humanities,
Law, Medicine, Engineering and Technology, Computers and Robotics, and others
that deem necessary. There will be a School of Islamic studies. Islamic behavior
will be strictly enforced on every student. Any student who scores less than a
'B' grade in the final examination of any subject will be expelled from the
University. No warning will be given, nor any leniency is shown. This is the
price the student pays for not pursuing the studies seriously when everything is
provided free of cost.
I am taking this opportunity to invite the readers who may be located in the
world and who have experience in running a University or those who have
experience and acumen in business, finance, administration, strategic planning
and execution, fund raising, highlevel contacts and interneting, education, etc.
to contact me. An X International Islamic free University Advisory
Council will be formed with the intention of making the Dream come True.
I am keeping my mind open to any and all suggestions from the readers.
Sayings of the Prophet (s)
- "Acquisition of knowledge is compulsory for every Muslim, whether
male or female."
- "The ink of the scholar is more sacred than the blood of the
- "Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave."
- "The best form of worship is the pursuit of knowledge."
- "To listen to the words of the learned and to instill unto others the
lessons of science is better than religious exercises."
- "Thinking deep for one hour (with sincerity) is better than 70 years
of (mechanical) worship."
- "Scholars should endeavour to speak knowledge and provide education
to people who have been deprived of it. For where knowledge is hidden it