As participants in “Behind the Veil,” 28 non-Muslim female students learned about life as Muslim women as they wore head dresses, or hijabs, on Wednesday.

“Behind the Veil,” an event Sara Yasin, a junior in textile and apparel management, said she thought up last summer, invited students to experience firsthand the life of Muslim women by mirroring their attire for a day, which includes covering their hair and entire bodies minus their faces and hands.

Yasin encouraged participants to abide by Muslim guidelines, such as not eating pork or drinking alcohol when wearing the hijab.

Wednesday evening, the organizers of the event along with a panel of female Muslim students sat to talk to the participants about past experiences and impressions from the day.

While one student said she participated “out of sheer curiosity,” Meghan Witzke, a junior in graphic design, said she participated because she thought it was an interesting concept.

“I didn’t get any kind of weird looks [while wearing the hijab],” she said.

Witzke said she sensed people were looking at her less than when her hair is uncovered, which she guessed was out of respect.

She said understanding the lives of Muslim women wearing hijabs on a daily basis could not be achieved without experiencing it firsthand.

“It doesn’t feel like you’re hiding yourself,” she said. “It doesn’t feel like you’re ashamed. It feels like you’re proud.”


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