For Muslims around the world the month of Ramadan is the most spiritually significant time of the year. Many observe this season through a month long fast that is considered to be one of the Five Pillars of Islam. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and the specific dates are determined each year by lunar sightings. Each year the holiday moves forward by about eleven days relative to the Gregorian calendar.

This year Ramadan is expected to begin on the evening of Sunday, May 5 and will continue until Tuesday, June 4. This marks the first time in about a decade that Ramadan will take place during the Spring semester. The Chaplain’s Office has worked together with staff and student leaders from across the University community to develop a plan to support those observing the Ramadan season.

Please see below for a list of resources available to students observing Ramadan and please contact us with any questions or concerns.

Dining

Penn Dining has developed the following arrangements for suhoor (early morning pre-fast meal) and iftar (evening fast-breaking meal). These options will be available from the beginning of Ramadan the night of Sunday, May 5th through to the end of the Final Exam period on Tuesday, May 14th.

Suhoor

Students can sign up here to receive a boxed meal for Suhoor through Penn Dining.

  • Meals will cost the equivalent of a meal swipe and can be picked up on campus the night before.  
  • Pickup locations include Kings Court English House (weeknights only) and Gourmet Grocer.
  • The final suhoor pickup will Monday evening 5/13.

* Please note that you must place orders for all days at the same time. If you are not planning to order food for any days you must select “None” for all options.

Iftar

Halal meal options are available on campus at Kings Court English College House (KCECH) and Gourmet Grocer (located in 1920 Commons).

  • Extended Closing Hours at KCECH (Monday to Friday):
    • Monday 5/6 to Monday 5/13 – Closing will be extended to 9pm
    • Tuesday 5/14 – Closing at 7pm
  • Gourmet Grocer Closing Hours (with meal swipe equivalent option available beginning at 5pm)
    • Sunday-Thursday – Midnight
    • Friday – 9:30pm
    • Saturday – 6:30pm

Interfaith Iftar – Tuesday 5/7

Penn MSA & PRISM will be hosting a special Interfaith Iftar at 8pm on Tuesday, May 7th in Bodek Lounge (Houston Hall). More event details coming soon…

Muslim Life at Penn Iftars & Suhoor

Muslim Life at Penn and the Muslim Student Association (MSA) will also host gatherings for iftar & suhoor throughout the month of Ramadan.

  • Iftar will be offered daily during finals (Monday 5/6 to Tuesday 5/14) at the Christian Association (CA) House (118 S. 37th St).
  • Alumni Day Iftar will be held on May 18th
  • Iftar will also be offered for Graduates and families on Sunday May 19th
  • Suhoor will be available at the CA house starting at 3:30 am during finals (Monday 5/6 to Tuesday 5/14).

More information will be available soon on the Penn MSA website (https://pennmsa.com/).

Prayer Space

SPARC Prayer Space (240 Houston Hall)

  • SPARC will be open until 9pm during Finals on the following dates:
    • Monday 5/6-Thursday 5/9 and Monday 5/13.
    • Dates and water will be available on these nights.
  • SPARC will close at 5pm on Friday 5/10.
  • Beginning Tuesday 5/14 SPARC will be closing at 5pm each weeknight throughout the summer.

Christian Association (CA) Prayer Space (118 S. 37th St)

  • The CA will be open for all prayers during finals Monday 5/6 to Tuesday 5/14 .
  • Taraweeh Prayers will be held in Tabernacle United hall next to the CA nightly during finals.  

Final Exams

Students are encouraged to contact their faculty and advisors as early as possible to discuss any potential conflicts between their observance of Ramadan and their academic expectations.   Procedures for requesting makeup examinations or other accommodations for reasons of religious observance are governed by the University’s Policy on Secular and Religious Holidays and the Rules Governing Final Examinations. If you need any further support please contact us.

Graduation

More information regarding evening graduation ceremonies coming soon