Wearing a head scarf has not stopped Jamila Boutrid from doing what she
wants to do – going swimming each morning dressed in her scarf and
full-length robe.

Boutrid, a senior journalism major, said Muslim women are supposed to cover
themselves in front of men they are not related to by blood, with the
exception of their husbands.

People often misunderstand why many women choose to wear a veil, she said.

“They don’t see it as an act of faith. They see it as oppression.”

The Muslim Students Association is sponsoring Islamic Awareness Week this
week to inform students about the religion. And today’s theme, “Beyond the
Veil,” focuses on Muslim women.

In the Islamic culture, it is traditional for girls to start wearing a veil
when they enter puberty.

But not all Muslim women choose to wear a hijab, or covering – and it is a
choice, said freshman biology major Mona Masood.

“It has to be voluntary,” she said. “We can’t force our religion on


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