Muslim women panel to speak at Cal State San Bernardino


A panel of three Muslim women will share their unique experiences living in the Western world when Cal State San Bernardino kicks off its fall quarter Conversations on Diversity speaker series on Thursday, Oct. 10.


From left: Asma Taha, Sister Betty Muhammad and Ece Algan

The panel will be held from 10-11:30 a.m. in the Santos Manuel Student Union Events Center. The event is free and open to the public.

Presented by CSUSB’s University Diversity Committee, the “Muslim Women” panel will feature CSUSB professors Ece Algan, communication studies, and Asma Taha, nursing. They will be joined by Sister Betty Muhammad, an active member of the Nation of Islam.

Algan, who is from Turkey, will moderate the panel discussion. She will address her experiences with women’s issues, including dress, religious beliefs and cultural traditions.

Self-described as Palestinian-Jordanian, Taha is associate professor of nursing both at CSUSB and its Palm Desert Campus. In addition, she is a pediatric nurse practitioner at Loma Linda University Medical Center. She earned her master’s degree and Ph.D. in nursing from Azusa Pacific University and is also the president of CSUSB’s Rho Beta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International, the Honor Society of Nursing.

Muhammad is an author and humanitarian who has dedicated four decades to teaching. Born in Louisiana, she converted to Islam in 1961 and follows the teachings of the honorable Elijah Muhammad.

Working closely with him, she wrote about her spiritual experience of serving a holy man in her book, “Dear Holy Apostle,” a testimonial of her work as a secretary in the Nation of Islam.

Muhammad received a bachelor’s degree from Southern University in New Orleans and earned both a bilingual teaching credential and a master’s degree in education from Cal Poly Pomona.  She’s recently published a book and journal titled “The Audacity to Teach.”

CSUSB’s University Diversity Committee has presented the Conversations on Diversity speaker series three times each academic year since 2005 to encourage dialogue among students, staff, faculty and the community about a variety of diversity issues.

Co-sponsors of this event include CSUSB’s academic computing and media department, Center for Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, College of Natural Sciences, College of Social & Behavioral Sciences, communication studies, human resources, the John M. Pfau Library, the sociology department and the Veterans Success Center.

For more information about “Muslim Women” or accommodations, contact Twillea Carthen-Evans at (909) 537-5138, or Mary Texeira at (909) 537-5547.

For more information about Cal State San Bernardino, contact the university’s Office of Public Affairs at (909) 537-5007 and visit