HRSS Awards

The Hajja Razia Sharif Sheikh Endowment

A native of Lahore, Pakistan, the late Hajja Razia Sharif Sheikh (November 16, 1920-February 16, 1989), was schooled traditionally at home. She held a strong belief in the value of formal education, encouraging each of her children to pursue higher education. Hajja Razia was a religious woman who urged her eight children to respect all cultures, creeds and religions. Her advocacy for education, openness and strong faith inspired her children to create The Hajja Razia Sharif Sheikh Endowment to promote scholarship on Islamic culture and civilization. The endowment generously funds annual awards for outstanding student writing, a dynamic speaker series, and the acquisition of Islamic studies literature.

The Hajja Razia Sharif Sheikh (HRSS) Award for Outstanding Writing in Islamic Studies

This HRSS award recognizes students whose essays excel beyond their peers in their analysis of essential source materials relating to Muslim culture and history. Awardees will have written essays demonstrating excellent prose and insightful commentary on literature, film, and music. Each year, a panel of three faculty judges selects HRSS Awardees. First, second, and third place awards respectively carry cash prizes of $500, $300, and $200.

The Department of Religious Studies is pleased to announce the following awardees and the respective courses in which essays were submitted as coursework, when applicable:

2021 HRSS Awardees

· First Place: Jessica Tucker (REL 372: Islam and the United States)

· Second Place: Hannah Salman (GSS 350/REL 371: Women, Gender, Islam)

· Third Place: Thomas Degnan (REL 372: Islam and the United States)