Hijab-wearing Muslim student voted best-dressed at US school

Published: June 30, 2015


A hijab-wearing Muslim  girl of Palestinian origin has been voted the best dressed student at Clifton High School in New Jersey.

Abrar Shahin’s yearbook photo shows her in a black skirt and skinny jeans, with ankle-high boots and a white blazer.

Along with this, she is seen wearing a hijab or headscarf.

“There are always cheerleaders who win and popular girls, so I was very surprised it was me, being a hijabi,” Shahin said.

“It was a dream come true,” she added.

Read: Muslim students struggle for ‘prayer room’ in Belfast university

Shahin who works at a clothing store in Paramus has been shattering long-held views about Muslims but still remains true to her religious traditions.

The “best dressed” vote also shows how tolerance and acceptance has increased at the school which boasts a diverse population of students including 52 percent Hispanic, 35 percent white, 8 percent Asian and 5 percent black, according to state records.

Lindsey Cinque, a French teacher who is yearbook and senior class adviser, said, “Shahin’s award showed that students can look beyond labels to honor someone’s accomplishment.”

Read: Danish culinary school fined $6,000 for forcing Muslim student to eat pork

Cinque announced the news to Shahin in class, adding, “In a class of 800 people, it’s definitely a huge honor that they picked her.”

Also of interest is that the best dressed male, Abraham Zeidan, also happens to be Muslim. Although Shahin was surprised at being picked for the award, Cinque said that she would always get complemented on her clothes by other students.

Shahin blends traditional style with modern clothes perfectly well, wearing long sleeves and pants with trendy teenage clothes from stores like Forever 21.

This article originally appeared on NorthJersey

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Reader Comments (27)

  • Jun 30, 2015 - 4:30PM

    Congratulations young lady! Mabrook! You do us proud. Also, congratulations to the US school for presenting an unbiased outlook. SalamsRecommend

  • Brar
    Jun 30, 2015 - 8:54PM

    She deserved it,congratulations.Recommend

  • Oats
    Jun 30, 2015 - 9:16PM

    If she is supposed to be modest and religious, why should she be worried about doing fashion and being stylish? This is not right – either you be consistent and be religious or you be into fashion but you can’t do both.Recommend

  • Jun 30, 2015 - 9:44PM

    Diversity and equal opportunity is very part of the American fabric. It is a county made up of immigrants and every one who becomes the part of the system has the opportunity to succeed. No one should be surprised by this news. This is the real United States of America.

    Abdul Quddus
    DET – U.S. Central CommandRecommend

  • Allah Rukha
    Jun 30, 2015 - 10:24PM

    The particular high school in question has already a sizable Arab student population, since there are Arab neighborhoods surrounding the high school. Also, this is not in the line of top high schools in the state as well.
    Just trying to present a comprehensive view. Recommend

  • Iftikhar Ali (@alimola)
    Jun 30, 2015 - 11:32PM

    Its not the hijab that made her beautiful rather she herself is gorgeous and beautiful, so what ever she wears she will look pretty. Love youRecommend

  • ShamelessPakistanis
    Jun 30, 2015 - 11:41PM

    Ask the African-Americans. They will tell you.

    Its a sad day for those Pakistanis who don’t believe in Religion. Recommend

  • Dani
    Jun 30, 2015 - 11:50PM

    Bro, are you on drugs, seriously?Recommend

  • jiyala
    Jun 30, 2015 - 11:51PM

    It’s just one high school out of a thousand others. No need to act like she won an award or something.Recommend

  • Mirza
    Jul 1, 2015 - 12:07AM

    This is what makes the US what it is today! God helps those who help themselves. Today’s America is a melting pot of various religions, races, and ideas that make this country proud and great. No other country would vote or select president, senators, or cheerleaders of totally different from the mainstream. Diversity and open-mindedness is the real beauty and strength of America. Way to go girl more power to you! You are the real face of America.. Recommend

  • Anon
    Jul 1, 2015 - 12:11AM

    A vote on best dressed students in a high school in the US is front page news in Pakistan?!

    Is this what its come down to?Recommend

  • yasin
    Jul 1, 2015 - 1:00AM

    Its just the beginning. Just wait. One day soon enough a burqa clad girl will win the Miss World/Universe title. Recommend

  • Emin raja
    Jul 1, 2015 - 1:23AM

    She is so beautiful !Recommend

  • Mirza
    Jul 1, 2015 - 2:57AM

    @Allah Rukha: You write”The particular high school in question has already a sizable Arab student population, since there are Arab neighborhoods surrounding the high school. Also, this is not in the line of top high schools in the state as well.
    Just trying to present a comprehensive view.”
    If this is comp. Review then what is a negative and subjective blinded review?
    Regards, MRecommend

  • Sceptic
    Jul 1, 2015 - 3:51AM

    What an Arab in the US winning a contest has to do with Pakistan. Hijab is not a Pakistani dress piece. Let us stick to our cultural roots of the Indus Valley.Recommend

  • badr
    Jul 1, 2015 - 4:00AM

    @Oats: why can’t you be fashionable (dress nicely, wear the trends, etc) and also be modest/religious? It’s people like you who give Muslims a bad name around the world. .. according to you, a person can either dress in a burlap sack and be “religious” or wear mini skirts and be a tramp. Why can’t there be a good middle ground?Recommend

  • Raza
    Jul 1, 2015 - 4:39AM

    Congrats to the lady on such an honor, but why is this major news on the ET website? Its not as if Pakistan is short of real news; but for some reason, ET appears to be obsessed with minor US social news. And even if US news has to be covered, how abo some real/relevant/important American news? Like the Charleston shooting? Or the ongoing Presidential nominations? Something that matters? Recommend

  • Jul 1, 2015 - 4:46AM

    Why? Since when has Islam asked us to box religion and the world separately? How is it a way of life if it precludes things like a desire to look good? Should all with good faith deck themselves out in burlap sacks to suit your sanctimonious whim? Recommend

  • S
    Jul 1, 2015 - 5:12AM

    Where in Islam does it say you shouldn’t be stylish? Recommend

  • Ashraf
    Jul 1, 2015 - 5:26AM

    Another great achievement that will make the 1.5 billion Muslims proud !!Recommend

  • khalidah
    Jul 1, 2015 - 7:19AM

    Dont see why one cant be consistent, religious and fashionable. Put your mind to it you can be all 3. I cant be bothered but yes there may be some who make an effort to go along with the times and ways of today !Recommend

  • Tiger
    Jul 1, 2015 - 9:45AM

    What stupid news.

    How embaressing for ET staff that they put this on their front page as news. Recommend

  • Hassan
    Jul 1, 2015 - 11:52AM

    After all u r a tiger u better leave for jungle…Recommend

  • Stranger
    Jul 1, 2015 - 1:18PM

    Boo hoohoo . ET ate my comemnt. Recommend

  • Baba
    Jul 1, 2015 - 2:44PM

    A picture of modesty; ironic isn’t it!Recommend

  • Prof. Mahamood Abdufatah Sheikh Rahman
    Jul 1, 2015 - 4:14PM

    She is a Muslim woman, not a nun.Recommend

  • syed Aamir Adeeb
    Nov 13, 2015 - 7:26AM

    The full is sheild of women if she is girl/kid it protects her from hypnotic eyes , and effected radaitions . The full hijab gives the real beauty to women without makup . It is time to think about this the doctors advices to girls if you cover youself with hijab ur beauty will increased the hijab hv lot of background s . If every girl will hide herself they will be protected from every thing . The women are beautiful creation of ALLAH THE GREAT . We are in the garden for example there is a beautiful rose with attractive perfume every one likes it everyone tryies to cut the rose some peoole touchs it and at last the rose goes dry and fells down petel to petel . If we cover the rose it will b protected by jall. The women are just like rose. If she hides herself she will protectedRecommend

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