“Indeed, the zakat given is like a door that opens up opportunities to seekers of knowledge. It is not only a motivation for us students to never give up on this journey; it is a lasting legacy for those who sincerely offer such help”
The Pergas Postgraduate Scholarship (PGS) was introduced in 2007 with an aim to develop and and equip Asatizah with a specific set of skills to produce Ulama that are relevant in today’s context. It also serves a development of the Muslim community in Singapore as a whole.
The PGS is divided into 2 categories; the Syed Abdillah Al-Jufri Grant and Kiayi Ahmad Zohri Mutamim Scholarship. 26 Asatizah have benefitted from the PGS since between 2015 and 2019.
A’ishah Binte Mohammad Bahrul Ulum, 24, was one of the two recipients of the Kiayi Ahmad Zohri Mutamim Scholarship in 2019.
The former student of Madrasah Alsagoff Al-Arabiah who had also studied in Kuwait before is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Fiqh and Usul Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence and its Fundamentals) in the University of Jordan (UJ).
Her parents, whom she affectionately calls Umaima and Ubaiya are her inspirations and pillars of support. Her mother, Ustazah Zauwiah Abidin especially is her biggest influence in deciding to pursue her postgraduate studies. She had completed her own master’s degree in Arabic Language when she has had 4 children and teaching full-time!
A’ishah, who had been studying in Kuwait since secondary level, believes that pursuing Islamic studies in the Middle East has advantages in terms of experience especially, as one will be in an Arabic-speaking environment with native speakers of the language. In addition to that, the exposure gained being in a different country and culture will broaden one’s mind; emulating scholars of the past who traveled from one place to another just to seek knowledge.
She decided to pursue her master’s degree in Jordan as she wanted a new experience in Sham, after years of being in the Gulf. Besides, she was drawn by the lineup of lecturers and modules offered in UJ.
A’ishah wishes to pursue a PhD in the future, but only after contributing back to the society once she is back from Jordan; by sharing the knowledge gained throughout her years of study or contributing ideas for the development of society, and generally being active in the community especially among the younger generation.
Explaining the rationale of her plans, A’ishah says, “This is so that I can gain experience and knowledge in dakwah and while understanding the context in Singapore and the application of Sharia in it. With that, I might pursue my PhD in neighbouring countries as it is nearer and easier for me to travel to and fro Singapore”.
A’ishah wants to further her research in the same field for her doctorate; Fundamentals of Islamic Law, as it is one of the tools needed to understand and overcome contemporary issues that are becoming more complex, and to really analyse a ruling for any situation based on the Quran and Sunnah.
Besides being occupied as a seeker of knowledge, A’ishah involved herself in a few humanitarian works; by visiting Syrian refugee camps in Jordan and distributing essential packs to them.
A’ishah, who applied for PGS based on her family’s recommendation, was very grateful when her application was approved. The scholarship secured helps her to fully focus on studies without having to worry on financial issues. Besides, it serves as a reminder to always give her best so as not to wastefully spend the scholarship entrusted.
She adds, “Indeed, the zakat given is like a door that opens up opportunities to seekers of knowledge. It is not only a motivation for us students to never give up on this journey; it is a lasting legacy for those who sincerely offer such help”.