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Frosh Programs

Starting your Stanford experience

Contact our Frosh Experience Coordinator, Maryam Khalil at

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Markaz Frosh Interns

The Markaz Frosh Intern Program is at the core of our mission to empower a vibrant community of students who identify with Muslim experiences both here and around the world. 


Using a framework grounded in social justice and our understanding of intersectionality, this program is an opportunity for first-year students to actively engage in community building, advocacy and allyship at the Markaz. The program takes inspiration from the history of student advocacy that brought the Markaz to life in 2013, and asks interns to tap into their passions and talents to uplift the work of the center and our broader community. 


Program Layout:

  • Establish connection with current professional and student staff through one on one meetings and whole staff meetings

  • Co-host Afterzoon Chai’s with a current student staff

  • Ideate and implement student initiated events

  • Connect with other community centers on campus 

  • Frosh interns organize an Admit Weekend Event

Meet our Interns:

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Itbaan is a Muslim Bengali-American frosh from Euless, Texas, a suburb in the heart of the Dallas--Fort Worth Metroplex. He is interested in studying International Relations and Product Design as he really like politics, international affairs, and STEM innovation. He can’t wait to meet and learn from students with diverse perspectives, create fun and engaging community-building events, and learn more about his own Muslim identity. In his free time, he loves watching and playing football and basketball, reading about current events and critical theory, volunteering, and mentoring students.

Itbaan Nafi

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Faris is a freshman from the suburbs of Kansas City, Kansas, although he was born and raised in Buffalo. His interests range from sports to statistics to spending time with his family, especially his two younger sisters. He love to travel, meet new people, try new things, anything to get out of his comfort zone. He played Basketball for 10 years through sophomore year and still (pre-covid) routinely plays as much as he can. He is excited to get his time at the Markaz started because he know how important having a Muslim community can be. Being Muslim in America is tough and so having others to go through that with is a blessing, and he hopes to be a part of that blessing for others.

Faris Bdair

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Lara is a freshman from Southern California, Specifically the Inland Empire. She is considering majoring in Political Science with a minor in Human Rights. She hopes to be an attorney and transition into politics later to be a primary advocate for all minorities! She is a huge advocate for any injustices and will stand up for those who may feel voiceless. In her free time, she loves to hang out with her family and friends. She is super excited to work with the Markaz!

Lara Hafez

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Ayesha is thrilled to be interning at the Markaz this year! She has a lot of different interests, but she plans to major in Human Biology with a potential minor in International Relations or Sociology. Outside of class, she volunteers with Cardinal Free Clinics, works with the Stanford Undergraduate Neuroscience Society, and is a member of the Women's Club Soccer team; she also enjoys reading fantasy books and watching soccer (go Liverpool!). At the Markaz, Ayesha hopes to help develop an inclusive, engaging space for anyone and everyone interested in the Islamic world, while exploring what being Muslim means to her.

Ayesha Khawaja

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Amin is an Iranian-American freshman from Orange County, CA. Throughout high school, he competed in debate and volleyball, and will continue debating with Stanford. As of now, Amin hasn't decided what he'll major in, but has interests ranging from public policy, biology, and history to cooking and poetry. Amin loves travel and foreign language-learning, currently learning Korean in addition to English, Farsi, and Spanish. He looks forward to meeting all of his peers on campus very soon!

Amin Sajjadian

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Mahmoud is a freshman from the outskirts of Paterson, New Jersey. He is looking to go into the Pre-Med track to one day become a Forensic Pathologist. In his free time he likes to talk to family members and friends, watch educational Islamic videos, and meet new people! A fun fact about him is that he has never lived in one place for more than three years and has lived in Michigan, Delaware, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Turkey, and his favorite: New Jersey. At the Markaz, his long-term goal is to make it more accessible to other populations at Stanford. He is excited for the next four years at the Markaz and cannot wait to meet everyone!

Mahmoud Hamdi

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Markaz PODS

The Markaz is facilitating a new networking program called PODS (People Obligingly Discussing @ Stanford) this year. This program is designed to pair first-year students with a group of 4-5 peers and an upperclass POD leader to meet monthly to check in and debrief on Zoom. This is a great opportunity to connect regularly and on a deeper level with each other.

Meet our POD leaders:


Yusuf is a Sophomore from Rockford, Illinois, interested in History and CS. He’s the director of the Muslim Student Union’s Social Justice Committee, the Co-President of Students for Justice in Palestine, and he is also involved with the AMENDS at Stanford.Yusuf is currently undeclared but plans on majoring in History and pursuing a co-term in Computer Science with the ultimate goal of attending Law School. During his first year, he was a SLE student (s/o anyone taking SLE!). Something he has recently gotten more into during quarantine has been cooking. He says, “I usually tend to cycle through the same 3-4 things, it has been a good opportunity for me to become more comfortable in the kitchen.”

Yusuf Zahurullah


Roda is a Sophomore from San Diego (AKA the 619) interested in Engineering and Public Policy. She also likes Math and CS, and enjoys writing and philosophy! She has interned at Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company, and this past summer worked as a research assistant with the Stanford Law School & D. school. She is currently working with Virgil Abloh and Oana Stanescu to organize a class at Harvard GSD and Stanford LS redesigning court systems. She is involved with Stanford Law School, the Black Community Service Center, the Muslim Student Union, the Sophomore Cabinet, the Haas Center for Public Service, and the FLI (First Generation/Low-Income) Community. She says, “I am super funny, really, my mom said so.”

Roda Nour


Sarah Raza is a Sophomore from Michigan who is interested in International Relations and Political Science. She is a Muslim Student Union Social Justice Officer and an Oral Communications Tutor at the Hume Center for Writing and Speaking. She is interested in Human Rights, Computer Science, and French. She says, “Ask me about activism/organizing on campus, service opportunities, study abroad, figuring out your academic interests, and overall just adjusting to Stanford as a Frosh (academically and socially and emotionally). In my free time, I enjoy listening to music, reading, and watching films! Also really into houseplants these days.”

Sarah Raza

Rafeea Tamboli

Rafeea is a Sophomore from Plainsboro, New Jersey interested in Economics. She interned at Stanford Technology Ventures Program this summer, and she is generally interested in Finance and Law. She’s on one of Stanford’s best dance teams: Stanford Bhangra. She is also involved with the Muslim Student Union, Stanford Women in Finance, Stanford Women in Law, and she did the ASES bootcamp last year! Her hobbies include “reading, eating/cooking new foods, and dancing.” Fun fact: she once traveled to seven states in a day.

Rafeea Tamboli

Ayman Babikir

Ayman Babikir is a Junior from Dubai, United Arab Emirates majoring in Management Science & Engineering with an International Relations minor. He’s interested in data science, economics, politics, and business. He does political research, has done internships in consulting, and is involved with Stanford SEED (Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies). He was supposed to be an RA this year (sad) and he says, “ask me about transitioning from abroad.”

Ayman Babikir

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Past Events

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Mahnoor, Aneeqa, and Maryam hosted a Markaz break-out room! They played games, did some tag-yourself memes, and shared stories about their winter break! They were even “interviewed” by some lovely frosh.

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Starting out the virtual year at the Markaz was filled with frosh mixers and hangouts galore! These were opportunities made to foster relationships between the frosh and our staff!

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As part of our frosh programming, we held study nights. Who says night study sessions couldn’t happen virtually? Better yet, is there a better way to get to know your peers than grinding out a PSET, editing papers, or explaining concepts? We think not.

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