By: Lillian Uy ’23, Staff Writer
After weeks of preparation, a new prayer and meditation space for students and faculty is now ready to use. This space — known as The Quiet Place — was created with the intention of giving students who do not practice the Christian faith a place to meditate and pray that is close to classes. The Quiet Place is located on the third floor of the nursing building.
“I was left to pray in empty classrooms between classes,” Graduate student Oumou Wague said in an email that that was what inspired her for the need.
“Professor (Gail) Begley (Visiting Assistant Professor and Interim Chair, Mental Health Counseling) and (Visiting Assistant) Professor (Denise) Curlee took it upon themselves to make the situation known and Professor Begley worked her magic in helping to create the Quiet Place.”
For many students who practice faiths other than Christianity, Wague said they had no designated space on-campus besides walking across the street to Murphy Chapel. Wague said this daily walk caused problems for students such as being late to classes or missing important lectures. Begley decided to take this initiative to the school’s Deans.
With the help of Wegmans School of Nursing Dean Patricia Gatlin, Gatlin found a lounge that was not being used and was would be the perfect new home for the Quiet Place. After the creation of a new wall-like foundation to add some privacy to the space, and the addition of new chairs and prayer rugs. The space was ready for use and was officially opened on January 27.
With concerns of creating diversity on campus, Wague believes that the addition of the Quiet Place has helped prove that Fisher is accepting of all students and that “It was a bit scary attending a school that is based on its Catholic traditions. I stood out in numerous ways. Seeing how accepting most people were and the efforts of everyone who helped create Quiet Place, I am genuinely grateful.”
Although, the primary purpose was to provide Muslim students on campus a place to pray during and between classes; the hope is that it can be used by anyone who needs a place to decompress, meditate, or pray.