Several MGCI students headed to the University of Toronto’s St. George Campus on 10 and 11 March 2018 to compete in this year’s Muslim Interscholastic Tournament (MIST).

MIST is an annual tournament where high school students compete in over thirty-five different competitions divided into six categories: arts, Quran and Islamic knowledge, writing and oratory, bracket competitions, group projects, and sports. MIST is not exclusive to Muslim students and encourages students of any faith to participate and become more educated about Islam.

There are fifteen regional tournaments that take place in fourteen U.S. cities and Toronto. MIST Toronto was established in 2008 and students from MGCI have participated every year since. MIST has a different theme each year, with 2018’s being “The Valor of Mercy.”

Students from MGCI at MIST. Photo: Areeba Asghar

Over seven hundred students across Toronto took part in this year’s MIST. Grade 12 students Maira Kabli, Azra Alavi, Zainab Alavi, Ayman Kazi, and Areeba Asghar from MGCI competed in the tournament. Ayman and Areeba advanced into finals for the Math Olympics and Spoken Word competitions, respectively.

Areeba said, “I wasn’t really expecting to make it into the finals since I have never done spoken word before and I wrote this the night before so it was a surprise. But just performing in general was such a big thrill and I honestly loved how enthusiastic the audience was!”

With only five competitors, MGCI has seen a significant decrease in MIST participation compared to previous years. Competitor and Muslim Student Association (MSA) President Maira Kabli said, “It’s usually members of the MSA that compete in MIST and in previous years the MSA has been a huge club with tons of members participating in not only MIST but every one of the MSA events. The majority of them have graduated and so this year, the club has reduced down to literally just a few people and that’s why the MIST turnout was so small.”

This year’s MIST also introduced a new feature; the “GET MISTIFIED” app provided participants with competition rules, personal schedule, map of the venue, and live updates of the competitions.

The MIST awards ceremony was held on 12 March 2018 and the winners from each region advance to the national tournament this summer in New York City.