CIS - Students and Graduates

Below you'll find a list of current students and graduates affiliated with the Center for Islamic Studies, along with each scholar's thesis or dissertation topic.

Toktar Aben
Islamic Studies

Faisal Azar
Islamic Studies


James Ford (on leave)
African-American Muslims

Yusuf Mullick
Philosophy of language, Philology, & Lexicography

Yasser Shohoud
Islamic Studies

Sundiata Al Rashid
Historical & Cultural Studies of Religion


Nosizwe Breaux-Abdur-Rahman
Islamic Studies
Investigates Early Diasporic African Muslims in North America: Identity, Belonging, Spiritual-Religious Resilience and Continuity


Jibreel Delgado
Forms of Life & the Written Heritage Through Modern Media


Reem Kosba
Refugee Studies


Laura Miller
Islamic Studies


Abdul Hamid Robinson-Royal (on leave)
Re/Imagining Masculinities: The Construction and Performance of an Aesthetics of American Muslim Subjectivity

Amin Tejpar (on leave)
Encountering Biotechnology: Religion, Technoscience and Nation-Building

Paula Thompson
Historical & Cultural Studies of Religion

Zeineb Vessal

Therese Bjornaas

Andrew Lee

Bradley Seligmann (JST, Grad 5/18)

Benjamin Griffin (Common MA, Grad 5/13)

Meredith Jackson (PSR MDiv, Grad 5/13)

Dianne Muller (DSPT MA [Theology], Grad 5/11)

John Compaglia (Common MA, Grad 5/10)

Sara Mohr (Common MA, Grad 5/09)

Michael Gutzler (Common MA, Grad 5/06)

Alexis Easton (PSR MDiv, Grad 5/93)

Saad Akbar
Words and the World: An Analysis of Adler's Solution to the Problem of Meaning
Spring 2020

Sakinah Alhabshi
Spiritual Wellbeing and Resilience During a Prolonged Crisis: An Analysis and Integration of Contemplation-based and  Action-based Practices from an Islamic Perspective
Spring 2022 (with Honors)

Sundiata Al Rashid
From Bean Pie to Baklava: Islam in the San Francisco Bay Area
Fall 2014

Huzaifah Bharucha
Contradictions between Āḥād Ḥadīth and Qiyās within the Ḥanafī Madhhab
Spring 2023

Murat Bilici
The Role of Islam in Kurdish Cultural Identity in America
Fall 2015

Suheyla Cetin
The Importance of Muslim Chaplains on University and College Campuses for the Well-Being of Muslim Students in the United States
Spring 2019

Mahjabeen Dhala
The Right to Choose Piety: Understanding Muslim Women’s God-centric Choice from a Shia Perspective
Spring 2017

Farah El-Sharif
"Making light" of Islam: Representations of Sufism in American Religion and the Public Sphere
Fall 2013

Imran Hyder Ghani
A Promenade of Memories: Reading Resistance and Revival in the Historiography of Maulana Hakim Sayyid 'Abdul Hayy al-Hasani
Spring 2019

Siddique A. Gilchrist
Faith and Spirituality: The African Muslim Slave Experience

Sarah Heddon
The Madrasa Early Childhood Program: An Integrated Model of Islamic Education in Kenya
Fall 2013

David Hiller
Breathe in Union: A Brief Look at Islamic Pluralism
Fall 2014

Brian Johnson
Islamic Spirituality and Philosophy

Deenaz Kanji
Transformation in Contemporary Sufism: Contested Meanings and New Mediations of the Qawwali Tradition
Spring 2014

Kamran Khan
Demonizing Islam with Islam: Political Motives and the Proliferation of Anti-Islamic Rhetoric
Fall 2020

Ahmed Khater
A Theoretical Study of Classical Islamic Jurisprudence: The Application of Marjuh Legal Opinions

Reem Kosba
Contemporary Christian-Muslim Relations in Egypt: Secularism, Violence, and the Challenges of Conflict Resolution
Fall 2016

May Kosba
From Ikhwanophobia to Islamophobia: Post-Colonial Cultural Nationalism in Post-Revolutionary Egypt
Fall 2016

Fateme Montazeri
Why Death?: An Inquiry into Text and Context in Persian Painting
Fall 2013

Hameem Rahman
In Search of True Enlightenment: A Comparative Study of Ghazaliam and Kantian Ethics
Spring 2019

Sammy Rahmati
Understanding and Countering Islamophobia
Fall 2015

Yahya Rhodus
Keys to the Revival: An Analytical Study of the Architecture of al-Ghazālī's Iḥyā' 'Ulūm al-Dīn
Spring 2012

Rania Shah
Al-Ghazali on Reason and Revelation: A Revival in the Heart of the Islamic Scholarly Tradition
Fall 2016

Huzaifa Shahbaz
Islamophobia, White Supremacy, and the Far-Right
Fall 2020

Saad Shaukat
Shibli Nomani's Contribution to Kalam
Fall 2016

Asif Ali Sheikh
The Transformation of Sufi Metaphysical Thought in South Asia
Fall 2016

Taqwa Mahrani Surapati
Human Suffering in Perspective: Understanding Islamic Teachings on Life and Death
Spring 2021

Paula Thompson
A New Normal: Islam, Countering Violent Extremism, and The Creation of ‘Muslim Subjects’ in America
Spring 2016

James Whipple
Reviving the Heart: The Heart, Knowledge, and Spiritual Transformation in al-Ghazālī's Revival of the Religious Sciences
Fall 2012

Dr. Kamal Abu-Shamsieh
End of Life Care and Islamic Practical Theology
Fall 2020

Dr. Abdullah Ali
The “Negro” in Afro-Arabian Muslim Consciousness
Spring 2012

Dr. Ali Ataie
Authenticating the Johannine Injil: Sunnite “Polemirenic” Interpretive Methodological Approaches to the Gospel of John
Fall 2011

Dr. R. David Coolidge
Abd and Dāsa: A Muslim Understanding of Caitanya Vaisnavism
Spring 2023

Dr. Mahjabeen Dhala
The Sermon of Fatima: Retrieving the Female Scholar-Activist Voice Amidst Patriarchal, Secular, and Sectarian Biases
Fall 2020

Dr. Uzma Husaini
The Centrality of the Link Transmission (Isnād), Both Oral and Written, in the Preservation of Qur’anic Orthoepy, Orthography, and Variant Readings and Recensions
Spring 2022

Dr. Ahmed Mahmoud Khater
The Development of Islamic Law in the West: The Legal Operational Principles of Western Fiqh Councils
Fall 2020

Dr. May Kosba
The Race Question: Egyptian Intellectualism on the Periphery of the African Diaspora
Fall 2022

Dr. Som Pourfarzaneh
Muslim Cultural Producers in The United States: Countering Stereotypes With Media+, Social Networks, and Cultural Capital
Spring 2013

Dr. Mohammad Waqas Sajjad
For the Love of the Prophet: Deobandi-Barelvi Polemics and the Ulama in Pakistan
Spring 2019

Dr. Hatice Yildiz
Revisiting the Qizilbash/Alevi Tradition in Light of 17th Century Mecmua Manuscripts
Spring 2017

Dr. Hamza Yusuf