co- written by TMSA

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Photo provided by TMSA

The Annual Formal Grad Dinner is a night of celebration where the Trent Muslim Student Association (TrentMSA) and the Trent community come together to honor the hard work of our graduating students. The TrentMSA Grad Dinner is an event that has been hosted every year for more than a decade.

The Champlain Great Hall was decorated with balloons, ribbons. The event hosted a diverse range of attendees that included Muslims, non-Muslims and the Trent community at large.

The event started with name of God by reciting a verse of the Holy Quran which inaugurated the proceedings of the night. After the recitation, there was a speech by TrentMSA president Muhammad Arif Khan. He welcomed the honorable Chief Guest of the event, President of Trent University; Dr. Leo Groarke and Mr. Glenn Empey; Trent Spiritual Affairs. Arif also welcomed professors and the graduating Class of 2016. Dr. Leo Groarke gave an inspirational speech which admired the work of the TrentMSA and congratulated the graduating class.

There were couple nasheeds (religious vocal music) sung by two Trent students (Mujahid Alharthi and Hassan Nisar).

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[Pictured] President Leo Groarke (left)
Arif Khan announced the accomplished goals of the year 2015-2016. For instance, a prayer place on the East Bank which was inaugurated this year. TMSA is grateful to Ashley Gerrits, the College Head of (OC) Office of Student Affairs and Mr. Glenn Empey who made this possible. Second, with the help of Chartwells, halal food is now currently served in two different cafeterias at Trent University. He extended his thanks on behalf of TrentMSA to partners, supporters and volunteers.

The dinner consisted of a selection of food which included rice dishes, chicken, kebabs and naan bread. After the dinner, the hosts congratulated the graduating class of 2016 and asked the chief guests to take the stage and hand out the gifts that the TrentMSA volunteers had prepared. There was also surprize gifts given by Dr. Leo Groarke to the graduating class of 2016.  Names of the graduates were called out by Saalar Faisal (TrentMSA executive) and each graduating student was recognized as they posed in front of the camera with President Leo Groarke. Once the ceremony had come to an end, henna was put by Manpreet Kaur Kenth (TrentMSA volunteer) and Maimona Altaf (TrentMSA executive). After there was a cake cutting ceremony with the graduating class of 2016. Lastly, there was a photo booth set up by Hamza Khattak (TrentMSA volunteer).

The event was wrapped up by the TrentMSA team 2016 where they thanked everyone who came for the night! The great work done by the Trent MSA is noteworthy as they have strived to create a stronger community through initiatives that were aimed at raising awareness and creating equitable spaces and services.

News of a hate crime committed against the Peterborough Muslim community rocked the nation last November. It is inspiring to see the perseverance of the community and more efforts should be made towards encouraging initiatives done by TMSA.