GOPIO Manhattan Organizes ‘Meet & Greet’ For Students From India At The New York Indian Consulate

The GOPIO-Manhattan (NYC) in cooperation with Consulate General of India in New York organized the ‘Annual Day for Students- New & Existing from India’ studying in the Northeast to connect them to the community and providing mentoring opportunities as well as to raise awareness of Consular services to students from the Indian Consulate. The program was held at the Indian Consulate in New York on October 21st. Students from many universities across the Northeast participated in person or virtually.

The program started with a welcome by GOPIO Manhattan Co Secretary and Chair for the event and emcee Ms. Bhavya Gupta. She welcomed Consul General of India at New York Mr. Randhir Kumar Jaiswal to begin the evening’s proceedings.

The host for the evening Ambassador Randhir Kumar Jaiswal, commented, “Welcome to all the students from India with open heart as you pursue your future studies here in the North-East region and help in the growth of economy here in USA and back home in India.”
He further highlighted this year Indian Students were the highest among the international community in USA, and the goal to expand this program to include more students, from the pool of 200,000 students that come to the USA for further studies, to attend in person more interactive sessions and gain exposure to various services offered by the Consulate for the benefit of the students from registration at the Consular Portal, to cultural events to mental health support initiatives.

This was followed by GOPIO International Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham’s address, who also serves as an advisor to GOPIO-Manhattan encouraged the speakers to mentor, motivate and guide the students.

Dr. Abraham said, “In the 1960s and ‘70s when a foreign student joined a university, he/she was given host family, now with connected world and social media, the host family concept went away and the 4.5 million Indian Americans could serve as the host family to the new students.”
Ms. Bhavya Gupta than introduced and invited the chief guest for the evening Ms. Chandrika Tandon and moderator Mr. Gautam Mukunda for a fireside chat. Ms. Tandon who is a Philanthropist, Grammy-nominated artist and humanitarian commented, “Students can succeed whether here in USA or in India, as long as they put in their work with honesty combined with hard work and dedication.”

Picture: TheUNN

She further added that there is a merit-based admissions process at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering and the incoming class has a very promising future with emphasis that new and existing students today have many more choices of majors to pursue such as computational biology not offered couple decades ago….

Ms. Tandon has donated $100 million to Tandon School of Engineering at New York University.
Mr. Gautam Mukunda, Research Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership, host of Nasdaq’s podcast “World Reimagined” engaged in a fireside chat with Ms. Tandon. His questions varied from her journey starting with her professional career to music to philanthropy.
GOPIO-Manhattan Executive Vice President Professor Rajasekhar Vangapaty introduced the Panel discussion moderated by Mr. Rajeev Kumar Goyle. There were seven panelists in this session who are asked to comment on several questions.

Mr. Rajeev Kumar Goyle, attorney and a lecturer at Wichita State University, shared his experiences with the students and moderated the panel. He indulged the panel to assist students in formulating their choices of major and career path. He further implored the Panel to reflect on the fireside chat and share their thoughts.

Mr. Srikanth Jagabathula, Robert Stansky Research Faculty Fellow and Associate Professor of Tech, Ops, and Stats at the NYU Stern School of Business, shared his experiences with the students and said, “wear different hats, multi-task, go out of your comfort zone, explore and discover.”

Mr. Raj Pandey, CEO of SaaS and Services startup ZopSmart added “students should immerse within the system, learn and connect with the people.”

Mr. Gagan Gujral, Director in the Financial Services Group added “that students should not be afraid to ask for help from teachers and peers as he reflected the cultural differences between homeland and USA.”

Mr. Shobhit Kumar, Senior Tech leader at a major Life & Annuity Company provided insights to Existing and New Students, “Students should be willing to raise their hands and ask for help. It is a sign of commitment.”

Mr. Sridhar Ramasubbu, CFO at Trianz, added, “leadership is not given, leadership is taken.” He further added students should take initiative, be ambitious but without adding stress.

Ms. Monica Arora, a partner and co-head of the Private Funds Group at Proskauer brought her experience with Students and added that “Students focus on the idea that is most important is building real relationships.”

Mr. Dilli Bhatta, commented about his personal journey from F1 to OPT to H1-B to Green Card and suggested students “ask your employer whether they will sponsor your visa or not, but you give your best services.”

He further shared personal views to the students as part of the panel said, “Now that you are here, outside of your studies, you need to network with your professors, peers, everyone & communication is the key, ask for things.”
Mr. Shivender Sofat, President GOPIO-Manhattan, who joined virtually told the importance of mentoring to the students, discussed chapter activities and motivated everyone to volunteer and become members at future events held by GOPIO Manhattan.

Mr. Siddharth Jain, GOPIO Manhattan Board Member & Program Coordinator; started with a condolence prayer for Late Dr Krishnan Goyle, life member of GOPIO Manhattan, husband of Ms. Vimal Goyle, VP and Founding life member of GOPIO Manhattan.

Mr. Jain called on Dr. Abraham to present Chief Guest Ms. Chandrika Tandon and Host Ambassador Randhir Kumar Jaiswal with a memento that included a First-Day Cover from GOPIO Foundation Day and a sheet of 20-Deepawali Stamps.
Mr. Jain concluded with vote of thanks to Chief Guest Ms. Chandrika Tandon, Host Ambassador Shri Randhir Kumar Jaiswal, Dy. Consul Shri Varun Jeph, Panelists the consulate staff. Other GOPIO-Manhattan officials present at the meeting included President Shivender Sofat (attended virtually), EVP Professor Rajsekhar Vangapaty, Treasurer Braj Aggarwal, Co-Secretaries Dr. Lisa George and Bhavya Gupta and Raj Punjabi.

Mr. Jain concluded with vote of thanks to Chief Guest Ms. Chandrika Tandon, Host Ambassador Shri Randhir Kumar Jaiswal, Dy. Consul Shri Varun Jeph, Panelists the consulate staff. Other GOPIO-Manhattan officials present at the meeting included President Shivender Sofat (attended virtually), EVP Professor Rajsekhar Vangapaty, Treasurer Braj Aggarwal, Co-Secretaries Dr. Lisa George and Bhavya Gupta and Raj Punjabi.
“The students had an excellent time networking with students from different universities as well as with speakers and the Consulate and GOPIO officials and we plan to do a much bigger event next year,’ Dr. Abraham added.

In accordance with its mission to serve the larger society and those in need, GOPIO-Manhattan Chapter has taken several initiatives in the recent past. A Community Feeding is organized by the Chapter providing ​vegan or​vegetarian lunch for the homeless and needy at Tomkins Square Park in Manhattan on the last Monday of every month. The chapter appeals to the community to support the initiative by being a volunteer and/or a sponsor.

For more info on GOPIO Manhattan, call President Shivender Sofat at 731-988-6969, e-mail: [email protected] or visit here: https://gopiomanhattan.org/

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