I did my bachelors in Islamic Art and Architecture and was looking for a good option to pursue my studies in the same field. When I heard about HBKU, and discovered they have the exact degree program that I was looking for, I was very excited. Because the university is in a Muslim country, and more importantly one that is evolving very fast in terms of education and architectural infrastructure, it was the best option to learn along with experiencing the real time Islamic architecture in another Muslim country. The program gives an overall insight into Islamic art and architecture in general and then allows students to choose from either art, architecture, or urbanism. This embraces students from different educational backgrounds to pursue a master’s in this field, which brings diversity in the class and promotes learning from different dimensions. Of course, all the professors are well qualified and experienced and it was a privilege to learn from their expertise. All of this together motivated me to choose HBKU to pursue a master’s in Islamic art, architecture, and urbanism.
I have learned a lot during these two years of my master’s program at HBKU. I explored how I can use a multidimensional approach to better understand the design approach. Islamic art and architecture is not limited to ornamentation or building structures, but it deals with understanding the psychology, anthropology and social patterns of the society. Without realizing these sensitivities of social environment, no architectural design can ever be successful. This changed my perspective towards looking at the design approach. Now, if I design, I will design differently, considering the various dimensions of approaches. I am also motivated to pursue a PhD in social sciences to correlate its phenomena with architecture, especially in Muslim societies. Other than that, I loved the overall environment, the exciting opportunities and events it provided, and the community life at HBKU.
These two years at HBKU were the most miraculous ones for me. So many things happened in my personal and academic life. The major event was when I became a mother after the second semester and then managed to continue my studies, which at first seemed impossible as a master’s student. But I successfully managed to complete the last two semesters, which I believe is the biggest achievement of my life. Along the way, I also participated in extracurricular and voluntary activities. I twice took first prize at the annual Calligraphy Competition of Education City, and secured second prize in the Maximum Steps Competition organized by Residential Student Housing, as well as becoming the first Female CDA of Male Student Housing. For me, my self-satisfaction is the priority, and I can confidently say that I am extremely satisfied with my progress, experiences, and learning during my life at HBKU.