Students at Nottingham university from Muslim backgrounds have spoken of the painful experiences they have had to deal with concerning Islamophobia.
Nottingham Trent University (NTU) assembled numerous events to help its student community recognise the discrimination faced by Muslims.
Several NTU students openly discussed what it is like being a Muslim and their experiences with racial abuse.
Also, Muslim women spoke about the unique impact that Islamophobia has had on them too.
There were various events in the first week of December that outlined these issues, with the main event taking place on December 4th at the Clifton NTU campus.
Islamophobia has had a life-changing impact on many Muslims across various ethnicities.
Haider Ali, 21, said: “When I started secondary school at the age of 11 in New York, most students in my predominantly white school reportedly labelled me as a terrorist and asked me if I was related to the Taliban.”
The 9/11 terror attack was a significant time for all Muslims. After the incident, many Muslims were perceived as villains in certain communities.
Hamza, 25, MA student in economics at NTU, said: “I attended an Islamic school in northern Syria, from my first grade up until my 12th.
“When I began my first grade and 9/11 had just occurred, that was a massive incident at the time, even more so because Muslims did it.
“In my third grade my school received bomb threats as retaliation to 9/11. ”
Amira, 26, said: When my mum immigrated from Syria following the month of 9/11, she was attacked and abused, had people spitting at her face for wearing a hijab; she has since removed it out of fear of encountering more abuse.”
Many Muslim women present themselves with headscarves or a Khimar (hijab) to identity as Muslim women, but this often tends to be the target for discrimination.
Maryam, 23, converted to Islam more than eight years ago and said she had never suffered any form of discrimination until she began wearing a headscarf.
Despite being a grown woman, she said: “I adapted and fitted within the English culture, I drank alcohol, I dressed in the same way as everyone else, but as I started putting on my hijab and my headscarf, everything changed.
“I couldn’t believe the way people looked at me and the comment that was are passing my way, it was an experience unlike any other I had encountered.”