Congratulations to the Class of 2023 CIS Graduates

Thursday, May 11th 2023, 4:00pm
GTU Center for Islamic Studies, 2452 Virginia Street, Suite 203 Berkeley, CA 94709

As-salaamu alaikum, greetings of peace.

The Center for Islamic Studies is delighted to present the Class of 2023 graduates in Islamic Studies:

  • Dr. May Kosba, PhD dissertation title, The Race Question: Egyptian Intellectualism on the Periphery of the African Diaspora. Currently Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Program in African Studies at Princeton University. Congratulations!
  • Huzaifah Bharucha MA thesis title, Contradictions between Āḥād Ḥadīth and Qiyās within the Ḥanafī Madhhab. Huzaifah will begin the PhD program in fall 2023, in the Department of Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures at UC Berkeley. Congratulations!
  • Dr. David Coolidge, PhD dissertation title, ʿAbd and Dāsa: A Muslim Understanding of Caitanya Vaiṣṇavism. Awarded the 2022 Best Dissertation Proposal Award. Congratulations!

The CIS also congratulates the following graduates for their comparative and chaplaincy work:

  • Dr. Raphael Mkuzi, PhD dissertation title, Interreligious Peacebuilding through Promoting Economic Justice in the Context of Malawi, Africa. Awarded the 2022 Borsch-Rast Dissertation Award. Congratulations!
  • Omar Naisan, MA thesis title, Decrypting the Son of Man Problem: An Inquiry into the Dominant Approaches to the Son of Man Problem and Its Conspicuous Application in Mark 8:27-31. Certificate in Islamic Studies.
  • Saad Akbar, Interreligious Chaplaincy Program, Islamic Studies Track
  • Safiyyah Kent Alsabri, Interreligious Chaplaincy Program, Islamic Studies Track

Since its founding in 2007, the CIS has had a truly global presence. The Center’s more than 75 students, alums, faculty, and visiting scholars come from over 25 countries and speak, read, or write in more than 35 languages. The CIS has also produced, hosted, and co-sponsored more than 1,000 programs and public engagement events as part of its collaborative work with institutions and organizations in the Bay Area, throughout the US, and around the world. 

Congratulations to all the graduates and their families, friends, and communities, especially as CIS celebrates 15 years. We thank, celebrate and commend the graduates for their scholarly excellence, for the wonderful and diverse ways they are advancing the work of the CIS and the GTU, for their work in spiritual care, and for their important leadership roles in bridging academia with the larger public. We also gratefully acknowledge the faculty who served on these thesis and dissertation committees and to all the staff for their support and care.
With deep gratitude, peace and blessings,

Munir Jiwa, PhD
Founding Director, Center for Islamic Studies
Graduate Theological Union