Trailblazing women - Fatima Al-Fihri

Fatima Al-Fihri

Trailblazing women!

I love trailblazing Muslim women, badass women who, regardless of the patriarchy system they have found themselves continue to do, be and excel in all fronts. First on my list is Fatima Al-Fihri, the founder of Al-Qarawiyyin University, which happens to be the world's oldest university. 

Yes, you thought right, Fatima Al-Fihri - a Muslimah was the first person to build a degree-awarding university. The University of Al Qarawiyyin was established in 859CE in Fez Morroco. 

Fatima Al Fihri was an epitome of faith, born in 800 Ad in the north of Tunisia to wealthy parents. She moved to Morocco with her family later in life. Well trained and educated, she and her sister – Mariam - were lucky to have their curiosity and talents nurtured and encouraged by their family and their environment. She built and established the Masjid al Qarawiyyin for her community – Qarawan when she got to Morocco and established the first university there with her own fund. This project she personally supervised. 

You know what surprised me the most with Fatima's story is that throughout the building of the university as she supervised the building, she was also fasting. She had promised that she would fast until the project was complicated, and she did. Wow!

Fatima, a global hero and a selfless leader, taught in the university after it was built, and this university continues to thrive and excels to date.  Its graduates include mathematicians, poets, doctors, philosophers, etc. This trailblazer established the university concept as we know it today and gave us all an opportunity to have a higher form of education.

It still amazes me that while Europe was besieged with the dark ages, the Arab world (Africa) was thriving in its accent into the Golden age of science, medicine, and technology. One of the people behind this feat is a Black African Muslim woman.

Fatima Al Fihri is one of my mentors, as I strive to be an epitome of faith, a pioneer, a selfless leader, a trailblazer, and a global Hero. Founding Mumtaz mind and wellness studio is one of my legacies in been a trailblazer and a pioneer. If you are a woman like me, find your purpose, thrive, and excel. You just never know you may be the next trailblazer the world is waiting for.

Kindly let us know in the comment box which part of her story resonates with you the most and your legacy. Remember to click the share button and share it far and wide.


Oluwatoyin Ogunkanmi

Date 7/13/2020

Wow!!! So inspired by this story.

Aminat Subair

Date 7/13/2020

This is an insightful piece! Thank you. It feels good to read about women who have done amazing things against all odds.

Hauwau Bello

Date 7/13/2020

You welcome, am glad the article makes you feel good.


Date 7/13/2020

Being a woman is not a limitation towards achieving any great feat, and grooming a female child towards fulfilling her purpose on earth should be strongly encouraged by parents.

Hauwa Bello

Date 7/13/2020

I absolutely agree! Thanks for the comment.

Raheemah Odusote

Date 7/13/2020

Wow! She accomplished almost the impossible feat at that time. The time when it was most difficult for a woman to excel on her own. She's truly an epitome. One of my legacies is to establish a library for the community where I live. Children need more books to engage their brains and a safe place to do it too.

Hauwau Bello

Date 7/13/2020

What a beautiful legacy you have there. Yes I agree, children need books and a safe place to access these books.

Sherifat Ibrahim

Date 7/13/2020

The fact that African history is full of great achievers and trailblazers is eyeopening and I believe that we need to make sure our children now this about themselves


Date 7/13/2020

Her faith is super. She must have been faced with lots of odd, she never gave up. She was resilient and achieved what has never been done.

Sherifat Olabode

Date 7/13/2020

Good Inspiration for the Muslim women and the women folks in general.


Date 7/16/2020

Indeed she was a pacesetter and a fore-runner. The fact that she kept to her words about fasting till the end and put herself out there all through and even taught is intriguing.


Date 7/19/2020

Wow! This is an amazing piece! Women definitely are not dormant neither are they dullards! And the world would only continue to thrive with such amazing female personalities irrespective of the different challenges. The part where she personally supervised her project and fasted all through while at it, resonates well. Thank you for sharing ma'am.

Fatima Mohammed

Date 7/19/2020

I have always been motivated by this phenomenal woman and other such Amazing trailblazers. Inspired by your work We are proud of you Keep flying the flag of motivation and inspiration We are right behind you


Date 7/19/2020

Oh i am so inspired, wont mind to be a trailblazer but i need to find that real passion to work help me God


Date 7/19/2020

What better way to be remembered? And oh! She fasted along the project establishment, Amazing. May this be a valid Sadaqatu jaariyah for her, and may Mumtaz Mind Wellness Studio stand the test of time too. Despite the uncommonness of such by women, not to mention being a Muslim woman, she blew glass ceilings... A hero that beat the positive odd! #awakening


Date 3/8/2022

I congratulate, what words..., a remarkable idea

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