“Indeed, God commands justice, doing good to others, as well as courtesy to close relatives. He forbids indecency, wickedness, and aggression. He instructs you so perhaps you will be mindful.” (16:90 )            “For every day on which the sun rises, there is a (reward from God) for the one who establishes justice among people.” (al-Bukhari)            “And thus have We willed you to be a community of the middle way, so that [with your lives] you may bear witness to the truth before all humankind. . .” (2:143)            “Dispensers of justice will be seated on pulpits of light beside God.” (Muslim)            “Do not spread corruption in the land after it has been set in order. And call upon Him with hope and fear. Indeed, Allah’s mercy is always close to the good-doers.” (7:56)           “Even an ant in its hole and fish (in the depth of water) invoke blessings on someone who teaches people goodness.” (al-Tirmidhi)            “O believers! Remain conscious of God, and be with those who are truthful in word and deed.” (9:119)           “God does not judge you according to your bodies and appearances, but He looks into your hearts and observes your deeds.” (Muslim)            “The parable of those who spend their possessions for the sake of God is that of a grain out of which grow seven ears, in every ear a hundred grains: for God grants manifold increase unto whom He wills; and God is infinite, all-knowing.” (2:261)           “Charity does not diminish wealth.” (Riyadh al-Salihin)            “Let there be a group among you who call ˹others˺ to goodness, encourage what is good, and forbid what is evil-it is they who will be successful.” (3:104)           “Avoid cruelty and injustice...and guard yourselves against miserliness, for this has ruined nations who lived before you.” (Riyadh al-Salihin)            “Do not forget to show kindness to each other. Surely God observes your actions.” (2:237)           “(Allah) has revealed to me that you should adopt humility so that no one oppresses another.” (Riyadh al-Salihin)            “It is We who sent down this Reminder (al-Quran) and it is We who shall preserve it.” (15:9)           “The best among you are those who learn the Quran and teach it (to others).” (al-Bukhari)            “So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me.” (2:152)           “There are two blessings that many people lose -- health and free time for doing good.” (al-Bukhari)            “Say: 'O My servants who have transgressed against your own souls, do not despair of God's mercy, for God forgives all sins. It is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.'“(39:53)           “Happy is the man who avoids dissension, but how fine is the man who is afflicted and shows endurance.” (Abu Dawud)            “And you love wealth with immense love.” (89:20)           “Being rich does not mean having a great amount of property, but (it) is being content (with what one has).” (al-Bukhari)            “Every soul is held in pledge for its deeds.” (74:38)           “Make things easy and convenient and don't make them harsh and difficult. Give cheer and glad tidings and do not create hatred.” (al-Bukhari & Muslim)           

Marygrove College Begins New Chapter

DETROIT — Marygrove College in Detroit began a new chapter Jan. 4 with the official commemoration of the school’s transition to a graduate-studies-only institution.

Marygrove announced in August that, due to declining enrollment, it would be cutting its undergraduate courses and would be focusing on its graduate programs.

“The college is still open; it’s focusing on graduate programs in education and professional development, human resource management and social justice, and we are still focused on the revitalization of the city of Detroit,” said Elizabeth Burns, the college president.

Marygrove was established in Detroit in 1927 as a college sponsored by the Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In the 90 years since, it has become a pillar of the Detroit community — particularly for students seeking a career in education.

Many of the remaining courses will be online.

“For our graduate programs, roughly 75 percent of our students are online,” said Burns. “We will still have a strong presence on campus, and we remain committed to the city.”

Several school officials spoke at the commemoration of the changes, hosted near the main entrance of the school’s chapel. Burns and several others spoke about how the mission of providing students with a strong education is still the utmost priority, and how Marygrove would continue to grow, albeit in a different direction than before.

“We are still in the process of establishing these changes,” said Sister Patricia McCluskey, the co-chair of the board of trustees. “We already had online programs, so we’re not starting anything totally new, and we have well-established programs for our education, social justice and human resource management. The board is working on further development and how to best expand these areas.”

Programs and classes at Marygrove begin at a staggered pace, but the first incorporated into the new paradigm began Jan. 8. The administration said that despite the changes, they want it to be the same institution people knew from before.

“We have a lot of hope,” said McCluskey. “It’s a beginning, and we’re proud to remain an anchor in the community … and providing leadership and a values-based curriculum. We have excellent faculty and members, and great programs. These values will only expand moving forward.”

Despite the heavy use of online resources, Marygrove officials said that staff tries to go the extra mile to ensure that students feel like they are working within a community and have a proper relationship with an instructor.

“I think we have a personalized touch, even in our online programs,” said McCluskey. “We are still able to maintain the small, personalized focus this college is known for through different means, such as chats, video conferences and email.”

Mustapha Steve Elturk, who had been an imam with the Islamic Organization of North America for several years before he began attending the school as a social justice student, was among those who spoke at the event. He stressed the importance of the social justice program and how having such an institution in the middle of the city was important.

“Not only do they teach you theory and statistics, but they help you implement what you learn,” said Elturk. “The goal here is to produce scholar activists. Not many schools worldwide even have a social justice program, and they began it 20 years ago. Marygrove are really pioneers.” Elturk said he hoped that with a more limited focus, Marygrove would be able to improve and grow the remaining programs.

“When the social justice program was introduced to me, it was very appealing with regard to what would be taught,” said Elturk.”The teachers and professors are very passionate, and you sense that. … I think it’s very important that it remains after that transition, and I hope they expand it to other related areas and look into more specialized areas.”

Burns said she hopes people realize Marygrove College is still a strong educational institution, and that it will still strive to help both its students and the city of Detroit.

“A lot of people didn’t understand we were only closing our undergraduate programs, and we wanted to ensure people know we are continuing forward, but with a new path,” said Burns. “Marygrove is always focused on education, and we have a long history of master’s students and professional development.”

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