The IFANCA sponsored Chicagoland Muslim Scholarship Fund (CMSF) was established in March 2003 to assist Muslim students pay for their higher education. The fund is to provide financial assistance at the undergraduate level, and to contribute to the emergence and future success of young professionals. Awards and scholarships are based on merit, financial need, character, and involvement in the Islamic community.

2005 was the biggest year yet in the organization’s three-year history. They received over 100 applications for five $1,000 scholarships. The scholarship winners are extremely successful students who are very involved within their communities, and potential role models:

  • Hakeemah Cummings—University of Chicago
  • Lina El-Beshbeeshy—University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Ammar Haq—Elmhurst College
  • Yasmeen Khan—Northwestern University
  • Farah Meah—Benedictine University

Fund-raising for CMSF is done primarily through donor contributions. At the 2005 annual ISNA convention, CMSF raised $4,800 in sales of the popular “I Pray” T-shirts and via donations received totaling $2,600.

CMSF has given out $15,000 in scholarships in the past three years and has ambitious goals. Eventual plans include offering scholarships to students nationwide. A fund-raising dinner is on the cards. Check online at for application deadlines for the year 2006-2007. If you would like to assist financially, please send a check with your tax-deductible donation to the following address:

Chicagoland Muslim Scholarship Fund
5901 N. Cicero, Suite 309
Chicago, IL 60646