Zayed University has launched new masters
Zayed University (ZU) has launched four new masters programmes in Islamic studies.The Institute for Islamic World Studies (IIWS) held an opening
ceremony for the
new programmes recently at ZU.
Classes in Contemporary Islamic Studies, Endowment Studies, Islamic Economics and Wealth Management and Islamic World Studies will begin in January.
"The new programmes aim to promote advanced research on the contribution of Muslims to science and culture and to respond positively to the challenges of modernity and globalisation" Dr Nasser Arif, Professor of Political Sciences and Executive Director at IIWS, told Gulf News.
"These masters are the first in Waqf [endowment] studies worldwide. Postgraduate degrees in Waqf were the dream of several scholars," said Professor Ali Goma'a, Egypt's Grand Mufti at the opening ceremony.
"These programmes are meant to empower our students and have a religious reference for a better interaction in the social and economic spheres," said Shaikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research and President of ZU.
Each of the programmes has 36 credit hours, and is accredited by the ministry as well as the Middle States Commission on Higher Education in the US. Courses will be provided in both Arabic and English.
"The masters found large demands; so far two programmes will run three cohorts at the same time. Kuwait Awqaf [Endowment] Public Foundation has expressed an interest in sending staff to earn MAES. The UAE Ministry of Education also will send school teachers of Islamic Studies for Master of Arts in Contemporary Islamic Studies (MACIS) as well as a group of Islamic teachers and researchers in South Africa who expressed similar interests. Federal ministries, local and multinational corporations based in the UAE and Islamic banks have shown similar interests for the different masters," added Dr Arif. Although the programme is available for all nationalities, most applicants so far have been Emiratis.
MACIS examines Islamic knowledge that forms the people's minds in the contemporary Islamic world and in the UAE in particular. Students will learn to analyse the traditional texts, goals and objectives of Islamic law, and their application in reality.
Master of Arts in Endowment (MAES) covers theoretical and practical aspects of endowment. Students will compare historical, cultural, scientific and religious roles of endowment in the Muslim and Western worlds.
The Islamic Economics and Wealth Management degree aims at training professionals in wealth management, fund, bonds and banking from an Islamic perspective. Islamic World Studies aims at developing a critical understanding of the economic, social and cultural conditions in the Muslim world.
Faris Al Tamimi, an MAIWS candidate, said that he registered to "find solutions for the new developments in all areas of life". He wants to combine tradition and modernity to meet modern needs and have a better understanding of reality and the future."
Job opportunities: According to Dr Nasser Arif, Professor of Political Sciences and Executive Director at IIWS, there are many job openings for graduates of these programmes in a variety of institutions.
Ministries of Justice, Islamic affairs and Endowment (Waqf), non-governmental organisations, charitable organisations, or Islamic financial institutions
Islamic colleges and universities, Ministries of Education and Islamic Affairs, Abu Dhabi Education Council, Knowledge and Human Development Authority, community associations, and Islamic media, research centres, and institutes.
Private and public sectors, government ministries, business, tourism, journalism and other media, teaching, research, public relations, finance and market research, museums, cultural centres, arts festivals, arts councils, diplomatic work, and international organisations.
Banking, fund management, insurance and Takaful (Islamic insurance), academia and research, auditing, rating agencies, consultancy and other finance institutions, law firms specialised in Islamic contracts.