Junior Fellowship: Cate Greenman


Printed with permission of Cate Greenman

Cate Greenman ’22 stands in front of a sign in Dearborn, Michigan, a city home to the largest Muslim population in the U.S.

Lucas Cohen-d'Arbeloff

Cate Greenman ’22 studied Arab and Muslim youth in Southern California and created a podcast entitled “Of Two Minds: An Exploration of Identity Among Muslim Youth” for her Junior Fellowship this summer.

Greenman recorded interviews with young people in Los Angeles and Orange County. Her project was initially geared toward adolescent participants, but she later shifted her focus to college-age interviewees after History Teacher Katherine Holmes-Chuba put her in contact with Dr. Amir Hussein, a professor of Contemporary Muslim Societies in North America at Loyola Marymount University.

Greenman said she was inspired to cover Muslim youth because she felt they had not been accurately represented in the past.

“The portrayal of Islam in the media is often negative, and in recent years there has been an increase in Islamophobic hate crimes and legislation, both domestically and globally,” Greenman said.

Greenman organized the interviews by sending surveys to Muslim college student organizations and said she was surprised at the participants’ willingness to share their personal experiences.

“The interviews were extremely insightful, and so many of the participants were friendly and willing to talk about their own experiences, which I was so appreciative of,” Greenman said. “One of my participants at first didn’t want to do a lengthy interview, but we ended up talking for over an hour about her opinions on Muslim representation in the media as well as about her own relationship with modesty and the way modesty is portrayed in the West.”

Greenman said she hopes listeners are able to deepen their understanding of the Muslim American experience through her work.

“I really hope my podcast can be used as a resource to help educate people about a group that is oftentimes not represented or misrepresented in the media, [help people] understand a little bit more about the struggles faced by Muslim Americans by hearing from Muslim Americans themselves and, most importantly, [help them] understand that no one group is monolithic,” Greenman said. “There isn’t only one way to be a Muslim living in America.”