Correction: An earlier version of the article incorrectly stated the group is called the Student Muslim Association. The correct name is the Muslim Student Association. The Appalachian apologizes for the error.
Because the closest mosques are in Johnson City, an hour and a half away, Muslims in Boone don’t have an easily accessible mosque to pray, said Lena Aloumari, senior journalism major and President of the Muslim Student Association.
“If it’s a tradition you have where you go every week, it’s hard to break that,” Aloumari said. “You have no choice. You are forced to break the tradition unless you are willing to drive that far.”
Jamal Bajwa, a member of the Muslim Student Association., said a mosque is not only a place for prayer, but a place to develop a sense of community. The lack of a mosque in Boone makes it hard for Muslim students to feel united.