Event celebrates Muslim Americans

Leon Mire, Copy Editor

“The Other 1%: Muslims in America” will highlight the experiences of Muslim Americans 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday evening in the University Ballroom of the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.

Hosted by the University Board, the evening will feature a presentation by storyteller and comedian Aman Ali. It will also include a calligraphy artist, and traditional foods will be served.

The calligraphy artist will be available in the Bridge Lounge of the Union throughout the event to teach attendees how to write their names in Arabic calligraphy.

Starting at 6 p.m., Ali will give a 60-minute presentation on the challenges he and other Muslims face growing up in America.

Katie Caulkins, cultural arts coordinator for the UB, said in an email Ali is a storyteller who uses a lot of comedic elements.

“(He) also is very educational as well,” Caulkins said.

According to his website, Ali has appeared on media outlets such as ABC News, CNN and NPR “to talk about the shenanigans of being an awkward brown kid from Ohio.”

Foods traditionally found in Islamic cultures will be served by Panther Dining, including luqaimat, a sweet, crunchy fried dumpling often served during Ramadan; bourekas, pastries filled with meat or cheese; and a’tay, a hot green tea made with spearmint leaves.

The event was planned for the UB cultural events committee’s “Ideas and Issues” segment. Carolyn Davis, graduate assistant adviser for the Student Life Office, said the segment was formed to encourage discussion about hot topics going on in the student population.

Members of Eastern’s Muslim Student Association will set up a table in the University Ballroom to talk with students about Islamic culture and answer any questions they have, Caulkins said.

Davis said even though many Muslims are born and raised in the U.S., some are still treated as outsiders.

“We want to bring awareness to a rich culture that is often judged but not well understood in today’s American society,” Caulkins said.

The event is free and open to the public.


Leon Mire can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]