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Passage to India:
Student group active at Trent

India, with its rich history, culture and traditions, conjures up many images… the Taj Mahal, the Himalayas, excellent food, exotic wildlife, spiritual quests.

For approximately 80 Trent students - members of the Indian Subcontinent Students At Trent (ISSAT) group - the region of India and its surrounding neighbours is home. And, through a number of events organized by these students, the rest of the Trent community can catch glimpses of this part of the world.

"The group was started last year by Asha Jalan, who is on an exchange to England this year," explains fourth-year computer studies/economics student Varugis George, who is president of the Indian Subcontinent Students’ Group this year. He adds that members of the group come from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

A major aim of the group is to organize festivals related to major religious days that occur during the academic year. As well, a "Spicing for Charity" food event was held on November 29, 2002, involving approximately 130 attendees, and an Indian literary event is in the works for 2003.

"We meet as needed throughout the year, more often when we’re organizing a festival," says Mr. George. "As well, we will work with the Trent International Students’ Association for Cultural Outreach in early March."

Mr. George came to Trent because of the recommendation of his high school headmaster, who had sent his own children to study at the University. Mr. George completed his high school years in Norway, after winning a scholarship to the United World College there.

Originally from the city of Cochin along the south-west coast of India, Mr. George may pursue employment or graduate studies in Canada after he finishes his Trent studies this spring.

For more information about ISSAT, please e-mail

Posted February 7, 2003

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