Home Al-Azhar Program Testimonials
Testimonials Print E-mail
Article Index
Summer 2009
Summer 2008
Summer 2007
Summer 2006
Summer 2005
All Pages


The program really enhanced my Arabic language skills a lot. Classes were well-paced and the teachers knew how to convey the material in a proper manner catering to students taking Arabic as a foreign language. A lot of focus was given to grammatical rules. Therefore, the program could have been greatly enhanced with more focus on practical Arabic skills such as writing and speaking. Nonetheless, the best Arabic lesson is till Cairo the city itself! The streets were perfect for practicing Arabic and for gaining confidence in speaking. However, it would still be useful for students on the program to learn a few 'Amiyya phrases before going out onto the streets. I initially found it scary that people on the streets and even cab drivers spoke to us as though we were pros in the Arabic ('Amiyya) language! - Hans Summer 2010
I had an excellent time in the program and will definitely make plans to attend again. In the short time that I was there, I learned so much. The program is VERY intensive and it is so imperative that you study every night, because each day you are on to a new lesson. I think the teachers were awesome. They were extremely patient. I think the program is well organized and is structurally formatted in the best way for non-native Arabic speakers to learn the language. You are fully immersed in the language and you are always learning. - Kiandra Summer 2010
As a third time student of Al Ameen Associates' Summer Arabic Class, I can verify the seriousness with which this program is taken for both content and excellence. Every year as comments and suggestions are made, they are taken into consideration and the best of suggestions are always immediately implemented. I have never worked with a group of professionals as dedicated to offering a quality program with the lowest price they are able to offer (because all of the US administrative staff is volunteer). These are people who care only about service to students of language - And their reward is with their Lord.

All of the teachers are professionals; they care and go that extra mile to ensure learning is foremost in the classroom. They will tutor after school and any time students are available. You will not find a better program for the amount of time allotted. I wish I could afford to work with these teachers for at least a year. - Basimah Summer 2010
Egypt is a beautiful place to be, and Al-Azhar is a beatific place to be -- regardless of what drives you to seek Arabic there! This program offers you that amazing opportunity to find yourself stepping on shoes much too hard to fill, although struggling is always found in short supply in today's day, so I say struggle on you student of Arabic! At the same time make Al-Ameen your choice summer intensive program.

Certainly, it offers very much the same quality of vastly more expensive Arabic programs, and for added bonus has the cushion of being run by Westerners who understand our need to be pampered. Although Egypt can be a rather precarious place for absolutes, the Al-Ameen crew always makes an effort to deal with the 'joys' of a non-Western setting.

The program is for serious Arabic students only, and it certainly takes you very far, very quick, with teachers more desperate to have you learn than yourself. And for Muslims, the Tajweed teachers are to die for. May God continue to guide us, Muslims and non-Muslims, towards seeing the beauty of the language of his Recitation. - Rameez Summer 2010


I was extremely happy with the Al-Ameen Arabic Summer Program. The program was organized with great care, and we felt like we were part of a big, raucous family under the loving guidance of Dr. Jones, Sister Matiniah, and Rosemary. We were encouraged to take initiative in organizing trips outside of Cairo and seeing more of Egypt. Many of us, however, stayed home to study! Don’t be fooled – because of its shorter duration, the program is very intensive (I experienced this at the advanced Arabic level, which was where I was placed) and you will need some of the weekends to catch up on homework, or to review.

Each class had only three to five students, which allowed for great personal attention from the teacher and helped develop supportive relationships between students. I was also able to get one-on-one tutoring with another teacher (during class time) for some of my weakest areas; that is to say, the program was flexible enough to accommodate my personal needs. The afternoon tajwid class was extremely helpful in perfecting pronunciation, and introduced an element of deep spirituality into our daily endeavors. We were also given the opportunity to continue study in the evenings with private tutors from al-Azhar, at an extremely reasonable hourly rate (for summer 2009, about $5 per hour).

In five weeks, my Arabic comprehension increased tremendously, while my speaking skills also improved. I also regained my confidence in reading Arabic texts, and reviewed much of the grammar that I’d let slide for the past few years. Through living together, supporting each other intellectually and spiritually, and traveling together, I made wonderful friends whom I know I will remain in touch with. This was truly a wonderful, love-filled, dynamic community and I look forward to returning next year! - Homayra Summer 2009
This was a very great program. The housing was well situated to fit our needs. The school/classes were close by and having transportation to and from the school and the shopping center was a relief. A great amount of the instructors were very knowledgeable and well respected. The program is designed for all levels of Arabic which was great because we were all placed in the level of Arabic we were fitted for. The Arabic and Tajweed in this program was very beneficial. This was a very well put-together program mashaAllah, May Allah reward all who were involved. All of the Al-Ameen staff were so unbelievably helpful and so kind. Before going on the trip I was worried about being in a different country without any family, but I felt like the staff made it so easy to adjust and I felt like I could go to them for anything. Overall, this was an amazing program. - Tasnim M. Summer 2009
I found the program to be extremely fruitful not only in the cultivation of knowledge of the Arabic language and Qur'an, but also in the construction of fruitful spiritual space in which one is afforded an environment in which Islamic values can be learned and spiritual growth can be facilitated. - Danny Summer 2009
My striving and persevering to complete this program as a 65 year old Muslim woman, who moves a little slower and processes a little slower; the abundance of knowledge I acquired; the lives I was blessed to encounter; and a great opportunity to peek into a world that came 4 to 5,000 years before me; made this experience truly amazing and fulfilling. Whatever small inconveniences or discomforts I may have crossed, surely, the positives, the new discoveries and the great benefits overshadowed them and I am so grateful.Thank you for helping to make this once in a lifetime experience safe, enjoyable and beneficial. - Tasnim A. Summer 2009
I had hoped to gain a more solid foundation for future advancement through personal study and got everything that I had hoped for from this program and then some. The teachers that I had were excellent and my Arabic instructor was especially suited for teaching beginners vocabulary and grammar. The students in my classes were serious and had a good natured competitiveness about them which made me work harder. Dr. Jones and sister Matiniah are the perfect people for directing this program and I am grateful for the both of them and their staff. I will keep you and everyone from this summer's class in the special places in my heart. - Bilal Summer 2009
The Intensive Arabic program was intense and worth every penny. When gearing up for this program be prepared to put in plenty of time for homework and study. The Arabic course is great for beginners and for people who have Arabic knowledge. The Tajweed course was magnificent. I came in with very few Suras memorized and know I have memorized at least a dozen. Also, you develop deeper appreciation for the Quran and how it is recited in the Arabic language. Although the program is only one month, the knowledge acquired from the courses is absolutely beneficial to one who wants to learn the language and the Quran. The program is well organized and well prepared and I would recommend it to anyone ready for an intense educational experience and a great cultural experience in historic Egypt. Jazak Allahu Khayrun to the people who have prepared the program and who put in time and effort for a great educational experience. - Amer Summer 2009
If you are serious about learning Arabic and you have the discipline for an intensive immersion course, then this program is for you. The program not only teaches you Arabic but immerses you in an Arabic speaking environment (Egypt) so you make use of that which you learn in class. The Tajweed Quran class also offered alongside the Arabic course is also of great benefit to those seeking to expand their knowledge of the Quran. The teaching staff at Al-Azhar was excellent. I highly recommend the Al-Ameen Associates’ trip to Cairo for those seeking to expand their classical Arabic knowledge base. - Imran Summer 2009
Despite all of my complaining about all the hard work, I’m so thankful that Allah allowed me to participate in this program. it was a great experience and I’ll never forget it. i loved the group of people that made this program so enjoyable. l really loved my classmates; we all bonded so well; the young and the not so young; the teachers were great and well-versed in the subject matter. Last but not least, i really appreciated Dr Jones, Matiniah, and Rosemary. They ran a well organized program and showed genuine concern for all of us. i learned things that, inshaAllah, will help me to continue my Arabic and Quran studies at home. - Nadirah Summer 2009
The staff went above and beyond the call of duty to meet all my needs and to satisfy many requests I've made.This trip was not my first experience participating in a study abroad intensive course program. However, it was the easiest to plan as Al-Ameen took care of booking the fights to Egypt, our housing in Cairo and our transportation to and from school as well as bi-weekly trips to the grocery store in addition to the continued flow of information from the minute we signed up for the program to our departure for Cairo and beyond. As a mother and a teacher, I've always enjoyed my role as the caretaker; it was nice to be taken care of for a change :-) and for that I will always be grateful. I would also like to add that my speaking in Fusha Arabic has improved (my goal when I signed up for the program) thanks to the many discussions and conversation I've had with my Arabic teacher and classmates, and now I get complimented on it by my Egyptian friends and Moroccan family who tease me often about using "fancy language" when I speak to them in Aamia. My biggest gain and most precious gift from the program was my experience in Tajweed class. I am planning on pursuing my studies in Tajweed and Tafsir Quran once I return to the States, Inshallah. - Fatima Summer 2009


By the grace of Allah, I was able to have a wonderful experience with Al Ameen in their Arabic intensive program. The experience has left me with a much better understanding of the Arabic language and an even more of a desire to master it. Classes were conveniently 5 days a week and were very beneficial. I would recommend this program to anyone who wants to learn the Arabic language with great teachers and a wonderful experience overall. Expect a great challenge from the teachers! The experience there was just amazing! - Suhail Summer 2008
I first wanted to thank the entire staff at Al-Ameen Associates for allowing me to participate in the program. I enjoyed it from the beginning to the end, having no prior Arabic lessons or tajweed lessons it was a struggle for me at first, but I prayed to Allah for the guidance and patience to endure and as always He answered. I would like to state for those who are thinking of attending - be prepared - the program is very much as it is called - "intensive". I would recommend it for anyone no matter the level they are currently at, it has given me a higher level of reverance for the arabic language. Shukran. - Nashid Summer 2008
The program in Egypt was a massive boost in my Arabic studies. When you are around other Arabic-speaking people, and you are doing intensive repetition in class, and you are using most of the vocabulary everyday, many of the words will soon just flow right off your tongue! Yes it is an intensive program with lots of homework, but it is worth every dime, nickel, penny and minute! - Ibrahim Summer 2008
I would recommend attending this program. The teachers and faculty care about each person and want everyone to have a successful time. I enjoyed the Qur'anic classes the most because every day we memorized more of the beautiful Qur'an and learning the rules for recitation. It was an immediate expanding of knowledge. This program also provides an authentic experience of living temporarily in an Arabic-speaking country. Salaam. - Gulhana Summer 2008
Studying Arabic in Egypt was an interesting experience for me. Inside classrooms, I’d learned grammar and new vocabularies; all taught in Fusha by our dedicated, passionate teachers. Outside classrooms, such as in Khan-el-Khalili or inside Cairo’s black and white cabs, I managed to pick up lots of ‘Armiyah phrases. People might say that Egyptians speaking ‘Armiyah in their daily life is a disadvantage against learning the ‘proper’ Arabic in Egypt. I found out that I was actually delighted to learn ‘Armiyah. I really had fun conversing with Egyptians on many things. The whole Arab world is pretty familiar with the Egyptian dialect anyways, so don’t be afraid to learn some ‘Armiyah while in Egypt.

What makes this program terrific is its Al Azhar atmosphere. We students were required to memorize new Quranic verses and also hadiths everyday. We also prayed together everyday. On the weekends, we went to various historical masjids and important Islamic sites together. The brotherhood and sisterhood within the group were very strong.

Lastly, Dr Jones, Sister Matiniah, and all Al Ameen staff members were all really helpful. They tried their best to ensure we get the best learning experience while in Egypt; that included creating a home-like environment in our spacious yet safe apartments. Jazakumullah khayran! Salaam. - Satrio Summer 2008
My experience with this intensive Arabic program was in fact INTENSE! I would recommend that you only apply to go if you are serious about learning Arabic and immersing yourself in Islamic culture. I enjoyed it very much with all its ups and downs. Needless to say, it was extremely hot, and to go to school five days a week was quite rigorous. However, you are going there to learn a very difficult language, so this is NOT a vacation by any means. You do get some time off to explore, but please make no mistake about it…you are there to study!

As a Christian, I wanted to learn about the Islam, and I did. For me, this program was worth every penny. Thus, I would go again if I could afford it! Please remember to pack as if you were going camping. Bring every little thing you may need to stay healthy or just for your own comfort. Also, only pack breathable clothing, and do not forget to use sun block. Good luck to you! With every blessing. - Lyna Summer 2008
Summer 2008 was my first time travelling abroad to study Arabic, although my husband has studied in Yemen and in Saudi for extended periods. Our summer 2008 experience in Cairo, Egypt was a valuable and memorable 5 weeks. The Al-Ameen staff and the summer institute faculty were attentive, hospitable, caring and nurturing to both young and old. The student body represented a cross section of American society and made for an interesting mix. The accommodations were very good, having native speakers teaching in their own environment was a plus and the proximity to the cultural resources made the trip worth every nickel. We recommend this program to folks who are not afraid of concentrated study and serious homework. - Dr Qadir & Sr Beverly Summer 2008
Assalamu Aleikum, I must say that it was quite an experience, alhamdulillah I benefited immensely from the program, especially in the Tajweed section. Upon arrival, I expected much less than what we were told would be offered to us. The apartments were clean, the neighborhood was great (especially the little kids whom would walk us to the souks, -market place). All in all, the atmosphere was great and so was the energy, both brothers and sisters helped each other with their homework and many organized outings to the pyramids/Alexandria... We had special school buses that would take us to school, that was neat

The curriculum was intense and so was the homework load-however our efforts were rewarded and our Arabic grammar and vocabulary improved within the first 2 weeks. Expect a minimum of 2 hours of homework a night, perhaps more (for the higher levels.)

The Tajweed class was great (maybe because we had A/C, must have went by faster) the teacher is great, she' taught us all the rules of tajweed and her fluency in English made it much easier for the non-Arabic speakers. If you're serious about learning Arabic and if you have the discipline required for this then I recommend this program to you. The program enables you to both learn Arabic and immerse yourself in an Egytian environment which will force you to practice and make use of what you learn in class. Al-Ameen also offered an after school tutoring service, which i didn’t use very often, but heard from roommates that it was very beneficial.

Everyone was great, Rosemary, Sr Matiniah, Br Jones answered all the questions and concerns we had, thank you for that. Enjoy the journey, you'll love it. I know I did. Gave sister Matiniah and Dr Jones a little bit of trouble, but such is life, we were just making sure they were doing their job :)

All the best, - Wafa Summer 2008


The Al-Ameen program is an outstanding opportunity. As with any language program, you get out of it what you put into it. With the Al-Ameen program, the opportunities for benefit are extensive, and are all the more impressive considering the affordability of the course. The classes are not only small, but tailored to suit your skill level. The homework assignments are thorough and relevant.

The accommodations are excellent, considering the choices otherwise available in Cairo. And, in terms of personal relationships, the organizers are wonderful, humble people, and I became great friends with my colleagues on the trip. If your goal is to connect more closely with the Qur'an, then this program is well-suited for you. I am thankful to have had this opportunity. - Omer M. Mozaffar SUMMER 2007
This program is for the serious student . If you are in need of an opportunity to devote your time to advancement in the arabic language, this is the way to go. We were provided with quality teachers who took their tasks seriously and a caring staff. Come prepared to learn and you will, inshallah. — Anita Summer 2007
I reverted to Islam in 1991 and since that time I have participated in numerous classes in Qur'an and Arabic language. Alhumdullilah, during that time my knowledge has increased but what we accomplished in one month at Al-Ameen's 2007 Intensive Arabic and Qur'an Program at Al Azhar University was monumental. Immersed for 30 days in historic Egypt, provided the environment for learning and the practical application thereof in the streets of Cairo, which can not be duplicated anywhere in the U.S.

After completing the intensive program my capacity for reading and understanding the Holy Qur'an was increased so much so that for the first time in my life I was able to complete the entire Qur'an in Arabic language during this Ramadhan with proper tajweed. I strongly encourage all students of Islam and Arabic language to invest their time and resources into the Al Ameen program, the rewards, Insha Allah, will be enormous. — Wayne (Abu Bakr) Summer 2007
I joined this program last summer as a graduate student in Islamic Studies with advanced language skills. I found the teaching staff to be excellent and the coursework to be challenging. The Qur'an (tajweed) instruction is impeccable. I would encourage more advanced learners to apply. If you have any interest in long-term study in Cairo or at Al-Azhar this program is the perfect introduction. — Ibrahim Summer 2007
Alhamdulillah, it is a good concept and should be supported. I found myself conflicted with my time b/c yes I was there to study arabic but it was also my first time in Cairo and there was so much to experience. The scheduling was excellent for the purpose of the course (ie to focus on and learn arabic). I had been considering coming again in July but we are expecting that month so it is not possible... Sister Matiniah, If there is any help I can offer please don't hesistate to contact me. Allah (swt) knows best. Hope all is well with all. — Khalid Summer 2007


The Al-Ameen program is ideal for those who have a limited span of time yet want an intensive Arabic learning experience. Our instructors were truly top-notch and very dedicated to accommodating student needs, and it's nice to have the Al-Azhar certificate. The organizers' arrangements for housing, transportation, and access to food and other provisions provide peace of mind to travelers in a foreign country. Of course, it was great to be in Cairo, where so many layers of history and culture can be appreciated. It was a wonderful experience overall. — Munir Summer 2006
The best part for me about the class was the opportunity to get away from the everyday routine, make that commitment to study, and work with some wonderfully talented young people. I would love to return and bring a couple of students. The Tajweed class was my favorite. It really explained why we pronounce Arabic the way we do and it gets you to reflect on our deen from an educational perspective. I enjoyed the living accommodations because they were away from the hussle and bussle of the city, yet a cab ride away from the fun. I would have liked to have some field trips that combined language development and sight seeing. — Basimah Summer 2006
I chose the Intensive Arabic Immersion Program because I have a Ph.D. that is now old-1989-and decided to see if I could get jump started back into Arabic. It worked! I stayed up all night reading and studying once a week for the first two weeks. In our small class of six people, at least three of us worked this hard and all had satisfying results. The instructor interspersed the grammar instruction with aspects of Qur'anic balagha (rhetoric) that helped us to understand why the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) both loved and understood the Quran with much more depth than many of us Muslims do today. I really hope that Allah allows me to attend again next year; indeed, if the program were stretched to eight weeks, I hope Allah would allow me to be a part of it. — Mukhtar Summer 2006
The trip to Cairo through the Al-Ameen program was the best thing that happened to me. Alhamdulillah, I had a blast. I fell in love with everything there, including their food, their shops, and even their people. Egypt is THE PLACE to go for learning Arabic language and Arab culture. What I liked about this program is that there is something in it for everyone. For example, if your sole purpose is to learn Arabic, the teachers were not only excellent, but patient, hard-working and dedicated. They seemed more like friends than teachers. At the same time, there is plenty of time for those who want to do sight-seeing and experience the Egyptian lifestyle. Going to class every morning was tough at times, but in the end, it is only the good times that you remember and cherish forever. I would be more than happy to answer any questions from potential students. — Sarah Summer 2006
My trip with Al-Ameen Associates to Cairo was a great experience that I will never forget. The program provided a excellent opportunity for me, as a non-Arab, to immerse myself in the Arabic language, Quran, and the culture. The Arabic lessons are intense, but the teachers care a lot about your progress and will become good friends, making the learning process much easier. On the weekends, there is still plenty of time to go sightseeing and shopping. Last year our group went to Alexandria, the Pyramids, the Old City, a rural farm, and on a cruise. I probably went to Kon Al-kolehee Market near Al-Azhar Mosque ten times. — James Summer 2006
My experience with the program was for the most part positive. I learned a lot of Arabic that I use in classes and with friends. I made friends in Egypt that I still talk to at least weekly. I got a chance to go overseas and learn about a culture very different than what I know. Everyone should do that at least once in their life. — Krysta Summer 2006
I feel that the Arabic program was just what the doctor ordered. Not only was the program excellent, so was the stay. Congratulations to all the students and may Allah shower all of us with his blessing. Mas muka (smile). — Faruq Summer 2006


Last year's trip to Cairo with Al-Ameen Associates was by far one of the best investments I have ever made. After finishing the course, I felt my Arabic was really on another level. The living quarters, food, shopping, and departure were well organized. Studying and class-room experiences were very intensive, yet there was still plenty of time to visit cultural and historical sites on the weekends. Al-Azhar was very beautiful and the teachers were second to none. For anyone who is serious about improving their classical Arabic skills, the Al-Ameen Associates trip to Cairo is a must. — K. Jahed Summer 2005
This experience in Egypt with Al-Ameen Associates was truly a blessing. It was my first experience in a Muslim country attending an Islamic university. The teachers were very helpful and very modest it made me proud to be a Muslimah. Even though the classes were intensive it was a great experience to be able to concentrate on our studies without the pressures of everyday life. A wonderful program and a unique opportunity to experience the culture, history, and the language of Allah's perfect Deen. — M. Abdullah Summer 2005
Alhamdulillah, you have only to concentrate on your Arabic and Quranic studies. The teachers help you learn and they are interested in you as a person, a student, a friend. If you're thinking of taking this program, do it, just do it!!! I will be forever thankful for this program. — W. Jihad Summer 2005
The Al-Ameen Associates Arabic Language immersion program was an excellent experience for me. It propelled me to hear the language spoken (the first stage of learning language), to begin to recognize, read and write some of the Arabic words that I already knew, to expand my Arabic vocabulary, and it motivated me to want to learn more. I had the opportunity to see a culture that I have only read about in books. The accommodations were comfortable, the company was exceptional and the teachers were excellent and engaging. — S. Hasaan Summer 2005
I had a nice time. I extended my knowledge of Arabic. I increased my knowledge of Tajweed, my accommodations were wonderful, my teachers were very learned, my fellow students were respectful, and calm in their demeanor. — Imam A. Hameed Summer 2005
The Intensive Arabic Program held at Al-Azhar University in cooperation with Al-Ameen Associates and The Graduate School of Islamic and Social Sciences was definitely one of the most comprehensive Arabic learning experiences I've had. The focus on modern standard Arabic in conjunction with the Quran class (focus on tajweed and memorization) allowed me to experience two different styles of Arabic while being constantly surrounded by individuals whose English was limited at best. Like any other program, you get out of it what you put in, but definitely the potential is there for you to benefit greatly by applying what you are learning in the classroom. The methodology of learning Arabic using Arabic is definitely useful for those who have some basic familiarity and/or understanding of the language when they enter the program — and provided for some amusing combinations of charades and use of the limited vocabulary we had! I will always appreciate the patience and skill of the teachers who were guiding us through this new experience and am grateful that I was able to benefit as much as I did within such a short period of time. — F. Mirza Summer 2005
The Intensive Arabic Immersion Program at Al Azhar University was an enriching experience to say the least — both on an academic and personal level. The program's concentration on personal development supplemented with a rigid course syllabus and small class sizes provided for an ideal study environment. Classes were designed and modified to cater to students' needs and ensure that each student got the most out of the course. The religious aspect of the program took it to a different level and was crucial in building up student confidence to read and pronounce Arabic aloud as well as comprehend chapters from the Quran. From the improvement in language, to the study of religion and the opportunity to meet the head sheikh at Al-Azhar mosque, right down to the experience of living in Egypt and forming friendships, the Intensive Arabic Immersion Program was both profound and unforgettable. — N. Elshami Summer 2005
We both enjoyed our studies at Al-Ahzar. The program was indeed intense, but we survived and learned the rudiments of Arabic. We wish we could go this year. We have never felt so at peace. Cairo, with its multitudes of people, poverty and the language barriers was a place where you felt love and kinship. We did not want to leave. — J. & I. Muhammad Summer 2005

Program Details

  • $3000 fee includes roundtrip airfare from New York City, ground transportation in Cairo, lodging and tuition waiver.
  • Classes for beginners, intermediate and advanced levels.
  • Classes meet five days a week, six hours per day with extensive homework and rote memorization.
  • CEUs and college credit available for additional fees.