If you’re given the privilege of going back home for a weekend, you probably spend your time catching up with family and friends, shopping for things you need for school, and maybe even doing some leftover schoolwork. I, on the other hand, was given an opportunity this past weekend to attend a formal dinner put together by India Forum Inc(IFI). This annual dinner celebrates the role that the Indian-American community plays in building Maryland, and therefore the United States as a whole. The dinner allows for the acknowledgement of the help the community has received from elected government officials, businesses, and media. In addition to the speeches given by the awardees, there were several cultural performances including the a cappella group at the University of Maryland and a dance group from Virginia.
It was an honor to be seated at the same table as Ben Cardin, the junior United States Senator of Maryland as well as Kumar Barve, a member of the Maryland House of Delegates. Also, I was able to meet Maryland Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown, who was elected on a ticket with the current Maryland governor Martin O’Malley. The former Attorney General of Maryland, Joseph Curran, Jr., was also present at this dinner and I had the opportunity to meet him as well.
Being in this atmosphere really gave me the chance to get to know our state officials better and I learned about their contributions to Maryland and the nation. As an added bonus, I met several alumni from Loyola and was able to speak to them about their college experiences. One lady, who completed her MBA from Loyola, was delighted to meet me, a current Loyola student. This just goes to show how much influence this school has on Maryland and how much of an impact our education here can make.