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India Day Sheds Light on IUP Students, Indiana Community

Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Indian Student Association hosted India Day from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 30, 2010, at the Hadley Union Building Ohio Room.

Dean Strittmatter and the India Day emcees
Eberly Assistant Dean Cynthia Strittmatter with India Day emcees Tushar Jha (far left) and Varsha Raj (far right). Photo: C. Strittmatter

MBA students from Eberly College of Business and Technology’s (ECOBIT) partnership with Peoples Education Society (PES) in Bangalore, India, and other business students were integral to organizing the event, held in celebration of the Indian festival of Diwali or “the festival of lights.”

“Diwali signifies the importance of vanquishing evil by good and dispelling the darkness of ignorance by the light of knowledge,” said Dr. Prashanth Bharadwaj, ECOBIT dean's associate.

More than 250 IUP students and Indiana community members attended. Participants enjoyed authentic Indian cuisine, watched various dance and singing performances, and watched a stand-up comedy act performed in different Indian languages.

Children from the Indiana, Pa., Indian community perform a contemporary Indian dance

At right:  MBA students from the PES, Bangalore-IUP program perform an Indian contemporary dance. Photo: P. Bharadwaj

The event’s theme was “unity in diversity,” which signifies both the multicultural and multilingual nature of Indian society and the recent increase of Indian students at ECOBIT. The business college’s Indian student population has nearly quadrupled since 2006, Bharadwaj said, which he attributes to the relationship between ECOBIT and PES, Bangalore. The college offers its MBA at PES, Bangalore, and students can opt to study at IUP in their second year, he said.

Bharadwaj also recognized twelve undergraduate students who recently returned from PES, Bangalore, on their first-ever trip to India. IUP's team won second place overall in an international business competition, wherein students competed against more than 500 students from thirty Indian business schools during the three-day event.

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