One of the distinguishing characteristics of TISA is its effort to lay the foundation of an Islamic Seminary by forging partnerships to provide synergy in developing and delivering high quality educational initiatives.
Southern Methodist University (SMU)
TISA has established a mutually beneficial relationship with SMU’s Graduate Liberal Studies Program, which offers a MA program in Islamic Studies for non-traditional students. Omar Suleiman presently teaches courses in this program. TISA offers a collaborative SMU Master of Graduate Liberal Studies with TISA’s Master of Arts in Islamic Studies or Nonprofit Management.
From the very beginning, TISA and Yaqeen Institute envisioned an intimate partnership where TISA would focus on academics and Yaqeen would focus on research. Yaqeen was founded and is still led by Shaikh Omar Suleiman. Yaqeen “aims to address relevant topics head-on with the help of the foremost experts in this space. In addition to translating and analyzing classical works on the subject matter, we also aim to actively participate in the current day discourse touching on all topics that are related to establishing conviction in the hearts and minds of Muslims, and battling the false notions that underlie Islamophobia and extremism.”
From the very beginning, TISA understood that it must have a strong relationship with the professional association of Muslim chaplains–AMC. The Association of Muslim Chaplains is the professional organization of Muslim chaplains, and it seeks to offer regular training that promotes the ongoing skill development of Muslim Chaplains. TISA and AMC organize an Annual Shura and In-service Training Conference for chaplains, Imams and other service providers to the Muslim community; and the Shura hosts the annual meeting of AMC. For the past few years the Shura and In-Service Conference has been held at Yale University.
The goal of ACC is to “promote the Islamic and intellectual development of Muslims throughout North America by providing non-interest based loans and scholarships for higher education.” To date, ACC has provided almost 1 million dollars in interest-free loans to graduate students. ACC and TISA will work together to provide interest-free educational loans to TISA students.
Fawakih and TISA are partnering so that Fawakih can provide Arabic language instruction for TISA students. Fawakih’s mission is “to provide accessible Qur’anic Arabic education to all, and by doing so, developing and mobilizing the movement for preservation of the meaning of the Qur’an in our lives.”
UMR is “one of the fastest growing NGO’s in the country, with a focus on building humanitarian coalitions to tackle developmental needs. At UMR we believe everyone has a right to live free of poverty in a secure and more equitable world where they are able to fully realize their potential.” TISA and UMR are collaborating to develop academic programs that will provide humanitarian workers with the professional skills to be successful in their field.
The Chaplains Office at Yale has been a supporter of the Annual Shura and In-service Training Conference. During the past two years, they have provided logistical coordination for the sponsors of the conference—TISA, AMC and MECC.
MECC’s aim is to attract, screen, support and endorse Muslim Chaplains for placement in public and private institutions in Connecticut; and to provide advisement on religious matters to institutions. MECC is a co-sponsor with TISA and AMC of the Annual Shura and In-Service Conference. TISA will work with AMC and MECC in establishing standards and then providing training for Muslim chaplains.