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Former President of MSA Shares His Journey Helping International Muslim Students Settle in Winnipeg

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We learn about the experiences of those who came before us through history. We hear about their troubles and obstacles and how they overcome them.

Zeeshan Zamir is the former president of the Muslim Student Association at the University of Manitoba and was a guest on a special volunteer segment of “Civic Platform.” Zamir says a lot has changed since he was president in 2016. Although times change, MSA remains an instrumental resource for international Muslim students in Winnipeg.

Established in 1970, MSA has been helping international students to settle and integrate inside and outside the campus. MSA has opened many opportunities for the students to volunteer and work together at many events throughout the year. Zamir says his role as president was to build relationships with many non-profit organizations in Winnipeg inside and outside the university campus to open many opportunities for students to get to know the city and its organizations. During his time as president, they also developed their Facebook page to be a platform to announce their activities to all students. Zamir notes as immigrants, it’s important to recognize Canada’s Indigenous population, and MSA worked to establish relationships with the Indigenous peoples on campus.

One of the tips that Zamir gave to the MSA is the need for local students to participate in the organization, not just international ones because they know the city well. Their presence makes it easier for international students to understand the system and help newcomers access services faster.

MSA has opened the doors for many newcomers, providing them with a community and helping them during their struggles. Canada continues to be the first choice for many looking to study abroad. In 2022, Canada hosted over 800,000 international students. In Winnipeg, we can continue to help create a space where all students can thrive, so we must listen to them and learn from their experiences.

– Zuher Almusre, U Multicultural

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