"From now on I can no longer deny the scope and reach of the Muslim American diaspora. Looking at America’s future through the visionary rims I have taken away from my summer experience, I see an unprecedented hope, desire, wealth of resources and, above all, potential in Muslim American youth".
-Mona Abdel-Halim, MPSN 2005
The Muslim Student Network (known today as the Muslim Public Service Network) emerged in 1994 as the first internship program in Washington, DC for Muslim college and graduate students. The program was founded by Iffat Quraishi, a school teacher in San Francisco, and her husband, Marghoob Quraishi. The Quraishis began their work with Muslim youth in the early 1960s, when they also founded the California-based Muslim Youth Camp. Their focus was influenced by being the parents of four American-Muslims, and they saw the coming generations of American Muslims as the community’s most precious resource.
MSN was designed to bring together Muslim Americans interns from diverse backgrounds, and support them with food, housing, and network of peers, access to internships in Washington DC, and a supplemental curriculum on different aspects of Islam and public policy from leading scholars and practitioners.
Until August 2005, the MSN program was operated under the umbrella of the Islamic Education Institute (a California-based nonprofit). In August 2005, the Muslim Public Service Network was incorporated in Washington, DC as a separate 501(c)3 with the aim of allowing for a more inclusive program and to more accurately reflect the program's intent.
Their legacy continues to live on with the over two hundred alumni from the Muslim Public Service Network whose career paths in public, non-profit, and government institutions illustrate the next generation of American-Muslims' intent to make America a better place for all its citizens.
Quraishi graduated from Stanford Graduate School of Business in 1959, and became a member of Institute of Management Consultants in 1967. As President and CEO of his own consulting company, his forty years of worldwide experience covered a wide range of professional activities, including corporate management, economic research, industrial development, interdisciplinary strategic planning, corporate management audits, and capital restructuring. As President and CEO of a public company for five years, he managed and directed its worldwide operations with branches in New York, Chicago, Boston, London, and Paris.
In recognition of his expertise in Islamic Finance and Banking, he was elected member of the Advisory Board of the First Islamic Bank, Luxembourg in 1966. He was invited to speak at various international seminars, meetings, professional societies and graduate schools.
Quraishi was an advocate for Islamic Revival and Reform since his early years in college and remained engaged, motivating and inspiring Muslim youth to bring about social change from within an Islamic perspective. As an activist, he helped to organize a number of Islamic organizations. The list includes the Islamic Student Circle in London, in 1955, the Islamic Society of McGill University, Montreal, in 1957, the Stanford Islamic Society in 1958, Muslim Youth Camp (MYC) in 1961, the Stanford Islamic School in 1961, the Muslim Student Association of US and Canada in 1963, and the Muslim Student Network (MSN) in 1994. In addition, he founded the Strategic Research Foundation (SRF), a Muslim think tank in 1990. He wrote a number of articles and booklets on various topics.
Iffat Renae Quraishi
Quraishi received her undergraduate education at Willamette University, Oregon and San Jose State University, CA. After teaching elementary and middle school and raising her four children, her graduate work in Linguistics (SJSU) prepared her for her current position teaching English in the Palo Alto Unified School district.
She comes from a pioneer American family that emigrated from France in the 1670s. After converting to Islam in 1960, she brought her experience of social and civil rights activism into the establishment of Muslim academic programs, co-founding the Muslim Youth Camp (MYC) and MPSN.