UNIVERSITY OF TOLEDO SETS UP ISLAMIC STUDIES POSITION
After eight years of planning, the University of Toledo has established an endowed chair of Islamic studies named in honor of a cleric who led the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo for many years.
The university, which established an endowed chair of Catholic studies in 2000, has appointed Mashhad Al-Allaf, a professor of philosophy and Islamic studies, to the Imam Khattab Endowed Chair of Islamic Studies.
The position will be based in the school’s department of philosophy in the college of arts and sciences.
A UT steering committee, which initiated the creation of an Islamic studies professorship, decided to name the million-dollar endowment in honor of the late Imam Abdelmoneim Mahmoud Khattab, who led the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo from 1980 to 1998.
“This is a very exciting time for us at the university,” said Sue Ott Rowlands, interim dean of the college of arts and sciences.
“We have been working for many years to create a program that would add to the religious and cultural enrichment of the school and the city,” she said. . .
He said that in 2001, when the endowment was named for the late Imam Khattab, the steering committee had raised about $300,000, and it reached the $1 million mark early this year. That’s when a search committee was put in place to fill the position.
Mr. Jabarin said the objective of the professorship is to create a program that not only encompasses all areas of Islam but delves into aspects of Middle Eastern culture, language, religion, philosophy, and history.
The Islamic studies endowment will complement the Catholic studies chair, Mr. Jabarin said, “creating what we hope will be a center of religious understanding at the university.”