Our History

How did MSA Nederland come about?

Moslimstudenten Associatie Nederland (MSA Nederland) is now reality. A platform in which established associations join hands. Read our story below.

Saturday, 11 July 2015


On 11 July 2015, the first words for the idea of an umbrella platform were penned, however, these soon faded back into the background. In late November 2015, a local association decided to bring the above words to the forefront. The student associations reacted positively to this and this therefore got the ball rolling.





A date picker was sent out for the first meeting.

وَٱعْتَصِمُوا۟ بِحَبْلِ ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعًۭا وَلَا تَفَرَّقُوا۟

And all of you hold firmly to the cord of Allah and do not be divided. (Surah Aali 'Imraan, Ayah 103)(Surah Aali 'Imraan, Ayah 103)

Friday, 25 December 2015 - The Hague

The very first meeting took place in an appropriate location. Centrally located in The Hague, within walking distance of the Second Chamber of Parliament, nine student associations addressed issues that really matter now. At this meeting, with the representatives of the associations present, we decided to take this initiative seriously. This was the beginning of a long series of meetings, with a different student association hosting each time at one of the Dutch universities. Among others, we visited the four major cities of the Netherlands and also made a trip to Nijmegen.


We will not bore you with interminable minutes of our meetings. What we will do, however, is highlight a few moments that have stayed with us and for which we are immensely grateful for. Hopefully, these moments will illustrate what we stand for and what we hope this platform can do for Muslim students in the Netherlands. 


Tuesday, March 22, 2016 - Nijmegen


This meeting laid the foundation for all the events that will follow in this paper. At this meeting, the atmosphere was good, better than all previous meetings. And before we made our way to the room where we were to meet, we first gathered in the student church. A building of Radboud University where there are prayer rooms for Christians, Muslims and anyone else who wants to pray. Here, we first performed the afternoon prayer (Salat az-Zuhr) before starting the meeting. This meeting featured Dr Altaf Husain, the mission & vision workshop and team building.

Saturday, 4 June 2016 - Leusden


On this sunny day with lots of flies, we had scheduled our consulting session with Dr Altaf Husain. Perhaps he needs a brief introduction. Dr Altaf Husain is the vice president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and has been a two-time national president of Muslim Students Association National (MSA national). He is also a university lecturer in his daily life. These are the qualifications on paper, but in real life he is much more impressive: good-humoured and tremendously down-to-earth. We could not have wished for a better adviser at this stage of our formation.


He provided us with a lot of practical advice and amused us. We also got to learn a lot from his anecdotes and experience of running a national Muslim students association. The highlight of this meeting which we would like to share with you is, the closing thought he gave us. We did not have to worry about success or no success, or losing our local organisations. Allah had brought us together for a reason.


Saturday, September 3, 2016 - Amsterdam


Team building was an idea that had been discussed for quite some time, and on 3 September, the time had come. The day revolved around a series of assignments that we had to complete in teams. These assignments included a scavenger hunt through the university and a Qur'an quiz. It was a long day, but mostly very productive. An important goal of this platform is to unite Muslim students in the Netherlands. Today we did this in a small but very effective way.


Saturday, September 3, 2016 - Utrecht


On this day, led by Rafih Berkane, we spent intensive time formulating the mission and vision of MSA Nederland. After several hours and many colourful post-its, we agreed on what we want MSA Nederland to achieve in the coming years. This mission and vision can of course be found on this site. Are you attracted to the mission of MSA Nederland? Then ask your local student union what you can do for MSA Nederland and come and experience MSA Nederland in person at the annual meeting!


Tuesday, 24 January 2017 - Alkmaar

Today was finally the day. We travelled to Alkmaar with two board members to sign the statutes of MSA Nederland. After more than a year of meetings, preparations and hard work, MSA Nederland is officially a fact. May Allah purify our intentions, accept our deeds and make MSA Nederland a source of goodness for Muslim students in the Netherlands.