As a small, premier liberal arts college with a strong honor code, Davidson is an excellent setting for Muslim students seeking a rigorous education in a values-based residential setting where religious practice is honored.
Administrators, faculty, and alumni are committed to nurturing the experience of each Muslim student so that Davidson feels like a home away from home. Our Muslim graduates have attended some of the most prestigious graduate schools in the country and have gone on to careers in banking, business, law, and medicine, among others.
College Chaplain Rob Spach, an ordained Presbyterian clergyman, is very supportive of the Muslim community on campus. We invite prospective or current students to contact the Chaplains' Office to tell us about yourself, and Chaplain Spach will gladly discuss in detail any of your questions.
Our Muslim students identify with many branches of Islam, including the Ismaili, Shi'a, Sufi, and Sunni traditions. While our Muslim student population is small and diverse, the Muslim Student Association seeks to build community in a variety of ways. In addition to coordinating on-campus Jumah prayers on Fridays, the group celebrates Muslim holidays, organizes events such as dinners and lectures, and promotes peace and cooperation with all other religious groups on campus.
Two prayer rooms with adjacent wudu facilities are conveniently located on campus. One room, called the Oasis, is in the Chaplains' Office suite of the Alvarez College Union. The other is in the Spencer-Weinstein Center for Community and Justice. Both areas are available for daily individual prayers (with prayer rugs provided). Muslim students also gather as a group in the Oasis for student-led Jumah prayers.
When Ramadan occurs during an academic year, observant Muslim students on the college meal plan may receive "Declining Balance" funds to off-set the cost of meals they do not eat while fasting. To register for this option, you simply notify College Chaplain Rob Spach before the start of Ramadan, indicating that you wish to be on our Ramadan meal plan.
Various academic departments offer classes exploring the role of Islamic thinkers and leaders in history, politics, and philosophy. A variety of courses specifically about Islam are offered in the Religion Department, including Introduction to Islam, Islamic Ethics, and Islam in the Modern Age. Students interested in learning Arabic may take courses in our Arab Studies program, as well as study abroad with Davidson-approved programs in Arabic-speaking countries.