In 2020, the Ribaat Academic Institute launched The Andrea Scholarship, in honor and memory of dedicated student and da’iya, Andrea Cluck Annaba. Every year applications roll in from covert women all around the world and, after careful consideration, are narrowed down to a group of finalists. These remaining applicants meet individually with the selection committee for interviews, leaving the committee with the challenging task of choosing the year’s recipient. In a pool of amazing women doing astounding work in their communities, to be selected as the recipient is no easy feat and warrants recognition and celebration.
With great joy and much confidence, the Ribaat Academic Institute announces the 2023 recipient of the Andrea Scholarship: Kori Majeed.
Kori Majeed holds many titles and epithets, and soon hopes to add Ribaat Teacher, and insha’Allah one day, Ribaat Scholar to the list. Mrs. Majeed, self-proclaimed serial learner, considers education as a necessary tool in propelling all her ideas forward. She lives a life of beautiful intentionality and purpose, and as a result, she exudes faith in action. Kori works in multiple spaces, online and offline, public and personal, encouraging others to do the same.
After graduating with her second master’s degree from Bayan Islamic Graduate School, she knew her journey towards Islamic knowledge was still not finished. She craved something deeper, and Ribaat provided that space. In 2022, she registered for her first courses in Tajwid and Arabic. She found joy in learning from female scholars alongside other women. The experience of learning the words of the Quran, while simultaneously learning the correct pronunciation offered Kori a heart-connection to the Noble Quran that she had not experienced before.
Kori reflects on her experiences with Anse Samah and Anse Abeer. She extols Anse Samah’s positive energy in Arabic class which facilitated an engaging learning environment, making Arabic fun for her again. Anse Abeer, her tajwid halaqa instructor, knew how to motivate Kori just the right amount, pushing her just outside her comfort zone for her to continuously improve. Anse Abeer’s teaching techniques challenged her to be precise in her recitation which made her even more hungry for the Quran.
Speaking on Ribaat, Kori shares: “Ribaat reminds me how expansive Allah has created our hearts. Just as I think I don’t have the capacity to receive the knowledge and wisdom my teachers share with me, Allah expands my heart to receive what He (swt) wills.” She finds an imaan boost with Ribaat, not only thinking of Allah’s expansiveness, but by seeing the other women around her also learning, while feeling as though she is sitting at the feet of teachers. These fellow students are a source of inspiration and motivation that bring hope to the heart.
Outside of Ribaat learning, Kori Majeed plays an active role in the Muslim community. As founder of GreenRamadan, an online space, Kori brings her environmental activism to the forefront, advising masājid and other organizations to take their environmental footprint seriously. She carries this forward to her local masjid, Masjid Muhammad in Washington DC, where she heads the Green Team promoting the prophetic model of environmental sustainability in community life.
Kori also homeschools her five children, may Allah ta’ala protect them always and raise them in goodness, and, for the past ten years, has served as Girl Scout Troop Leader for a local Muslim group. Additionally, she co-leads a monthly active adventure gathering for Muslim women called She Got Grit and plays basketball weekly with a group of Muslim women ballers.
A positive cultural change agent working hard in her community, she knows studying with Ribaat will only further her ambitions and better equip her for the tasks ahead. She hopes she can bring the spiritual nourishment of her learnings to her local masjid. When not studying or benefiting her community, Kori can be found spending time reflecting in nature, reading graphic novels, taking dance classes, or laughing with her daughters where she lives on Nacotchtank land, now called Maryland, USA.
May Allah ta’ala bless the path forward for Kori in her studies, may she continue to be a positive cultural change agent and bring forth the beautiful prophetic example in all her work. Ameen.