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Faculty Profiles

Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi

Dr Mohammad Akram Nadwi is a world-renowned scholar of Indian origin, who has now resided in England for many years. He is recipient of the Allama Iqbal prize for contribution to Islamic thought and is the Principal and co-founder of Al-Salam Institute.

After receiving advanced in-depth training in the traditional Islamic disciplines at Nadwat al-Ulama (Lucknow, India) and receiving a PhD in Arabic literature from Lucknow University, he became a Research Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies where he conducted research for a number of years (including on the topics of hadith and Sufi orders in India). He has published widely in Urdu, Persian, Arabic and English. This includes translations (such as his work on Shah Wali Allah), editions of Arabic texts (such as a renowned critical edition of Usul al-Shashi in Hanafi jurisprudence), and original monographs (on Islamic law, hadith sciences and figures such as Abu Hanifa and Sayyid Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi). As co-founder of Al-Salam Institute, he continues to teach short courses and Advanced Level modules on the Islamic Scholarship Programme.

He is also author of Al-Muhaddithat: The Women Scholars in Islam, a monumental 53-volume biographical dictionary which charts some of the significant contributions made by female hadith scholars over the centuries.

Dr Abdul-Hakim Vazquez

Dr Abdul-Hakim Vazquez has spent almost 20 years studying the classical Islamic sciences under a variety of traditionally-trained scholars, and has received ijazah in hadith from scholars including Shaykh Akram Nadwi, Shaykh Abd al-Rahman al-Kattani, Shaykh Abd al-Rahman Walad al-Hajj al-Shinqiti and others. He has travelled to study with scholars in Mauritania, Syria, Yemen, Morocco and the UK. He was awarded his shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) at the Al-Salam Institute under the supervision of Shaykh Akram Nadwi.

In 2005 he completed his doctorate in History at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, with a thesis on the establishment of the Maliki legal school in Muslim Spain. He has worked at SOAS as a lecturer, researcher and editor.

Ustadh Abdul-Malik Sheikh

Ustadh Abdul-Malik Sheikh began his tuition in Arabic and the Islamic sciences under Shaykh Abdul-Qayum. He then continued his studies at the European Institute of Human Sciences in France. He has studied under numerous scholars in Syria, Jordan and UK; including Shaykh Akram Nadwi, Shaykh Ahmad Hawwa, Shaykh Munir al-Jawwad and others. He graduated from Al-Salam Institute and was awarded his shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) under the supervision of Shaykh Mohammad Akram Nadwi. He completed his training at the Goldsmiths University of London and is a social worker by profession.

Ustadh Abdullah Muhammad

Ustadh Abdullah Muhammad memorised the Quran by heart at the age of 19. He has an MA in Islamic Studies with a Distinction from SOAS (University of London) and also pursued further post-graduate studies at Al-Azhar University in Cairo. He pioneered the popular ‘Journey through the Quran’ Course and operates the Quran Study Group to promote the study of the Quran.

Ustadh Abid Khan

Ustadh Abid Khan has been studying the Islamic sciences for over 10 years. He has studied under many notable scholars from Makkah, Madinah and the UK. He has an ijazah in hadith and Quran recitation from a number of scholars including Shaykh Ahmad Muhammad ‘Amir al-Azhari, Shaykh Dr Ahmad Tahir Awais Somali and Shaykh ‘Ali Khallufi from Morrocco. He has also graduated from the Al-Salam Institute Islamic Scholarship Programme and was awarded his shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) under the supervision of Shaykh Akram Nadwi. He graduated in Biomedical Engineering and Applied Physics (Hons.) and went on to specialise in his Masters in Biomaterials and Stem Cell research at University College London, graduating in July 2011. He is currently working as a consultant at First Ethical and is also an Imam at Masjid Noor in Harrow, London.

Ustadh Abu Aaliyah

Ustadh Abu Aaliyah Surkheel Sharif has been involved in Islamic teaching both in the UK and abroad since the late 1980’s. Abu Aaliyah has studied the Islamic theology, law, and spirituality with a number of scholars over the last 20 years. He has authored a number of titles, including ‘More Fish Please’, ‘The Golden Rule of Differing’ and ‘Evolution, Prayer Mats and Telescopes’. He has an MA in Islamic Studies; serves as an imam; has completed a number of translations; and is currently the Director of The Jawziyyah Institute.

Ustadh Abu Huraira Rahman

Ustadh Abu Huraira read Modern Middle Eastern History & Arabic as an undergraduate, supplementing it with a year of studying Arabic at the Arab Academy in Cairo. He has also studied Hifdh and Tajweed at the European Institute of Human Sciences, France, before returning to the UK to continue his studies in the Islamic sciences at Al-Salam Institute. He graduated from ASI and was awarded the shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) under the supervision of Shaykh Akram Nadwi.

Dr Afifi al-Akiti

Shaykh Afifi al-Akiti is KFAS Fellow in Islamic Studies and Islamic Centre Lecturer in Islamic Studies at the Faculty of Theology, University of Oxford, as well as College Lecturer in World Religions at Worcester College. Shaykh Afifi, who comes from Malaysia, is trained as a theologian and philologist in both the Islamic and Western traditions: educated originally at the feet of the scholars of the Muslim world, he subsequently received a First Class degree in Scholastic Philosophy and History of Science from the Queen’s University of Belfast, where he was awarded various scholarships to read for his Masters and Doctoral degrees at Oxford. His areas of expertise are Islamic theology, philosophy and science. He is also a Senior Lecturer at Al-Salam Institute.

Dr Ahmad Barouni

Dr Ahmad Barouni graduated from the Faculty of Hadith at the Madinah Islamic University in 1996. During his studies in Saudi Arabia, he had the opportunity to study under some of the scholars of the hijaz and obtain numerous ijazah in the various Islamic sciences. He founded the School of Arabic and Islamic Studies in October 2009, where he continues to serve as the school’s Principal. He completed his PhD doctorate in hadith studies at the Maktoum Institute, University of Aberdeen.

Dr Aisha Janjua

Dr Aisha Janjua graduated with MBBS, BMedSci Hons, DFSRH from theUniversityofNottingham. She is an Obstetrics and Gynaecology Specialist Trainee at West Midlands Deanery. Dr Aisha is also an Islam Channel Presenter on ‘Health Show’, Member of Muslim Council of Britain Health Committee.

Ustadh Akhlaaq Choudry

Ustadh Akhlaaq Choudry spent several years abroad pursuing Arabic and Islamic studies after graduating from university with a BSc and Masters in Geology. Since returning to the UK, he has been furthering his studies with Al-Salam Institute and has extensive experience in teaching the Arabic language. He is CEO of the Oak Tree Initiative, a centre specialising in the tuition of Arabic language.

Ustadha Arzoo Ahmed

Arzoo Ahmed read Physics at the University of Oxford, graduating with a BA in 2008. She completed an MPhil in Medieval Arabic Thought, at the Oriental Institute, Oxford, in 2012, under the supervision of Professor Fritz Zimmerman and Dr. Afifi Al-Akiti. Her thesis research focused on reason and revelation in the works of Raghib al-Isfahani. Arzoo has worked as a Research Associate at the Office for Public Management, completing research and evaluation projects for the NHS, Macmillan Cancer Support, and London Creative Labs. She also worked on policy issues with the government through her role in YMAG, where she was elected as Chair. In 2013, Arzoo completed a degree in Islamic Studies with Al-Salam Institute, after having studied the Islamic Sciences with Shaykh Akram Nadwi for eight years. She is also managing the publication of Al-Muhaddithat: a 40-volume encyclopedia on the history of Muslim female scholarship. Arzoo’s research interests include: the soul and the human person; epistemology; methodology; ethics and gender studies.

Ustadh Ayman Abdel Haleem

Ustadh Ayman Abdel Haleem completed his BA in Arabic at the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), University of London with first class honours. Following his graduation he travelled to Egypt, where he spent some time studying under a number of Azhari scholars at an Institute for Arabic and Islamic studies in Cairo. After returning, he continued his studies at the University of Cambridge, where he completed an MPhil in Theology from the Faculty of Divinity. He is currently a Senior Teaching Fellow at the School of Oriental & African Studies, (SOAS), where he teaches Quranic Arabic.

Ustadh Hussan Mahmood

Ustadh Hussan Mahmood completed a Masters in Information Systems Engineering in 2001 at Imperial College, London. Thereafter he enrolled on the Shariah Studies Program at the European Institute for Human Sciences in France and Wales. He serves as a khateeb for a number of mosques in Manchester and has studied with a number of scholars including Sh Abdullah al Judai and Shaykh Mohammad Akram Nadwi. He currently resides in Manchester where he works as managing director of a property development company.

Dr Ibrahim Harvey

Dr Ibrahim Harvey has spent years studying the classical Islamic disciplines with a variety of traditionally trained scholars and was blessed with the opportunity to take knowledge from some of the senior scholars at Al-Azhar in Cairo. He obtained a doctorate in Islamic studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London and publishes his research on Quranic studies and early Islamic intellectual history with recognised academic journals and presses. He has also graduated from the Al-Salam Institute Islamic Scholarship Programme and was awarded with the shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) under the supervision of Shaykh Akram Nadwi.

Dr Mehrunisha Suleman

Dr Mehrunisha completed a DPhil in Population Health at the University of Oxford titled “Does Islam influence research ethics?” She completed a BA in the Biomedical Sciences Tripos at the University of Cambridge, followed by clinical studies and an MSc in Global Health Sciences, at Oxford University. She has worked with Sir Muir Gray on the Department of Health’s QIPP Right Care Programme andis a co-editor of the NHS Atlas of Variation for Diabetes and Liver Disease.

Alongside her university training and work in the NHS, she has been studying the Islamic Sciences with Sheikh Akram Nadwi and more recently with Professor Tariq Ramadan. She completed her Alimiyyah degree with Al Salaam Institute in 2013. She has also been appointed as an expert for UNESCO’s Ethics Teacher Training Programme.

Ustadh Sabih Khwaja

Shaykh Shafiur Rahman

Shaykh Shafiur Rahman began his Arabic and Islamic studies under notable scholars in the UK. He later studied Shariah at Ma’had al-Fath in Damascus (2006) and then travelled to Cairo to study Shariah at the prestigious Al-Azhar University. He has spent a number of years studying the classical Islamic disciplines under a variety of traditionally-trained ulama and has received ijazah in hadith from scholars including Shaykh Akram Nadwi and Shaykh Ahmad al-Surti. He graduated from Al-Salam Institute and was awarded with the shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) under the supervision of Shaykh Akram Nadwi.

Dr Shameq Sayeed

Dr Shameq Sayeed completed his memorisation of the Quran at the age of 9, starting at Karachi and finishing in Michigan under Mufti Abdur Rab Rabbani. He later pursued studies of Arabic and Islamic sciences in Leicester at Jame’ah Uloomul Quran, as well as in Cairo and Damascus. He received his ijazah in the shatibiyyah (7 qira’at / readings) and Durrah (3 qira’at) from Mufti Mohamed Umer Esmail. Presently, he is continuing his studies with Shaykh Akram Nadwi and Al-Salam Institute, and teaches hifz and tawjid in Oxford, where he currently resides.

Ustadh Tariq Pandor

Ustadh Tariq Pandor is a graduate of Al-Salam Institute in Oxford where he was awarded with the shahada al-‘alimiyya (Licence in Islamic Scholarship) under the supervision of Shaykh Akram Nadwi. He also holds a Diploma in Arabic studies from the European Institute of Human Sciences, France and has studied shariah for several years in the UK with Sheikh Abdullah Al Judai. He holds a Masters Degree in Civil Engineering from Imperial College London and is a Civil Engineer by profession.

Dr Usaama Abdullah al-Azami

Dr Usaama al-Azami began pursuing Islamic studies formally in 2002. He subsequently enrolled at Oxford University, completing his BA in Arabic and Islamic Studies in 2008. Over the years Usaama has been able to study with, and/or obtain ijazat from a number of scholars. They include Shaykhs Akram Nadwi, Ahmad ‘Ali Lajpuri, ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Kattani, Yunus Jaunpuri and others. He has been studying under Shaykh Akram Nadwi at the Al-Salam Institute for over six years at the Advanced level, and he is currently a doctoral candidate at the Princeton University Department of Near Eastern Studies, completing his thesis on contemporary Islamic political thought.

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