12512770_10154692707710021_4198238441035550475_nOn Saturday, March 26, over 375 Auburn students gathered on the Student Center Green Space to celebrate the yearly Indian Holi festival. In India, Holi announces the arrival of spring and the passing of winter. The event was hosted by the Auburn Indian Student Association and included organic colors from Oklahoma. Students also participated in a Zumba class taught by Recreational and Wellness Center instructors.

Viraja Khollam is an aerospace engineer graduate student from India who is currently serving as the president of the Indian Student Association. “The main objective of ISA is to help promote cultural diversity on campus by introducing Indian culture or festivals through events,” said Khollam. “Apart from that, ISA also helps incoming International students with accommodations or certain guidance in their initial few days after arrival.”

Holi week is celebrated across the world and is considered to be a festival of colors. Participants cover themselves with dry powder and colored water.

600429_10154692696515021_602386269456187948_n“We went through different departments of Auburn University for permission to play with the colors and for the physical activity of Zumba,” said Khollam. “I think it was great success. Even though we had bad weather, people danced and did Zumba in the rain. It was followed by delicious flavorful Indian food and then playing with colors by throwing at friends or family.”

The Indian Student Association has several events each semester and also recently hosted their Bollywood Night event.

“We want the student body to know and learn about different cultures, and if they are interested in Indian culture, then support our association by being part of it or attending the events,” said Khollam. “I am passionate about ISA because it gives me a different identity as leader apart from aerospace engineer – someone who has access to resources to help for different cultural experiences. Someone who helps in making student involvement eclectic and better.”

To learn more about the Indian Student Association and how to get involved, visit the AUinvolve website at https://auburn.collegiatelink.net/organization/isa.

written by Rachel Eilers

Last modified: 07/01/2016