Maytha Alhassen is currently in her third year of a doctorate program at USC, focusing on American studies and ethnicity. An emerging public intellectual, she writes for CNN and The Huffington Post often on themes of American Muslim identity. A growing list of her published works can be found on her trendy website that defies any stereotype one might have of the bland academic.
As a NewGround alumna, she has continued her writing, and has spoken on numerous panels about women from different faiths. Maytha has also explored other avenues of self-expression. She and Saria Idana, a fellow Jewish member of her NewGround cohort, became close friends and started collaborating artistically through spoken word, poetry, and music. They linked their shared stories and created pieces that they could perform together.
Maytha Alhassen first learned of NewGround from her brother, who was part of an earlier cohort. When she joined the program though, she didn’t discuss his experiences with him. This allowed her to go into the program with a completely open mind. Her only expectation was to learn more about the “insurmountable issues” between the two groups.
Being part of the fellowship exceeded any expectations Maytha could have had. The program allowed her to branch out, explore her artistic talents and her understanding of other people and their relationships to their faith.