Zaytuna College, the first Muslim university of the United States, has been officially recognized by the American Higher Education System. As one of the six institutions responsible for the accreditation of private and state universities, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) granted the college accreditation.
Founded in California's Berkeley city, the school began education in September 2010 with students from different countries and religious backgrounds. Zaytuna College has three main departments - Islamic Law, Theology and Arabic Language. It was founded in 1996 by Hamza Yusuf and Zaid Shakir, two American citizens who converted to Islam, and turned into a social university in 2009. One year later, the college began to offer courses as the first Muslim university in the U.S.
"I hope more Muslim universities will be established in following years," Yusuf told Anadolu Agency. In one of his earlier statements, Yusuf said the college offers Islamic education based on science.
Some of the other universities in the U.S. offering the academic study of religion are the University of Notre Dame for Catholics in Indiana, the Yeshiva University for Jews in New York and the Wheaton College for Evangelists in Massachusetts.