Indian students represent the second largest international student population in the US. According to the US Open Doors report, in the year 2013-2014, more than a hundred thousand Indian students were enrolled in US universities, indicating an increase of 6.1 percent over 2012.
Many US universities have formed student associations that serve the Indian student population. They help students foster Indian culture and values and a sense of belonging in their community. The following universities boast the top 5 Indian Students Associations (ISAs):
1. Indian Students Association at Auburn University
Operational for over 25 years, it is one of the largest and most active student organisations in USA. It aims to spread awareness of Indian traditions and culture but primarily works to help Indian students. It organises social and cultural activities, community service gatherings and general body meetings to promote cultural exchange and diversity among students and communities. It has hosted several programmes in collaboration with Indian Cultural Association of East Alabama (ICAEA).
2. Indian Students Association at the Ohio State University
It is a nonprofit, voluntary organisation that connects Indian community to the OSU. It works to promote Indian culture and heritage throughout the city of Columbus. It aims to lay a strong foundation of Indian culture, morals, and traditions, and unite it with the Buckeye spirit. It organises cultural shows, dance competitions, movie screenings, sports competitions, Indian festival celebrations etc. ISA also helps new students by providing pick up service from the airport and arrange for temporary housing accommodations. It also arranges for cool deals (discounts and gift vouchers) for members of ISA throughout the year.
3. Indian Students Association at the University of Oklahoma
ISA helps new students to deal with educational and social issues, at University of Oklahoma. To provide them a home away from home”, they encourage interactions among students and the local community. It works with International Advisory Committee, International Student Services and Hindu Student Council, to host many cultural and recreational events. ISA consistently represents Indian students in talent shows and various competitions.
4.Indian Students Association at the University of Texas at El Paso
The ISA at UT seeks to promote the Indian culture through on-campus activities and media, academic excellence and to encourage social service in the community. Students with a minimum GPA of 3.0 are eligible to work for the association. The team comprises of a president, vice president, general secretary and volunteers. They strive to promote friendship and unity among the students and community members.
5. Indian Students Association at the University of Georgia
The primary objective of the ISA is to promote, advance, and spread awareness about India and its cultural heritage. They have committed to foster international understanding among the students and community through interchange of views, customs and cultural exchange. Their foremost goal is to provide new students with a sense of belonging to a community and to help them adjust to their new life at UGA. They help new students by arranging for temporary and permanent housing accommodations.
The membership is open to all the students of UGA, regardless of their age, color, race, religion, sex, language, sexual orientation, or political views. They have hosted several events including India Nite, Independence Day, Diwali Night, Fall Fling etc.
These student associations work tirelessly to solve the problems of their fellow countrymen and to provide a hassle-free study term for them. The best thing about them is that they are non-profit organisations, who do all the work voluntarily. The students who faced diverse challenges during the initial stage of their life in the US and on the campus, are now working to make the lives of new students easier.
Charles Beckman is a college student studying Psychology, who struggles with writing difficulties and feels a bit skeptical about the education system. Charles likes all sorts of challenges and adores Steve Jobs. Currently he exercises his writing skills working as a guest writer at DoMyPapers.com.