Sep 12, 2023|2 minutes
Alumni groups are essential to any institution, adding value and enriching the overall experience. These groups play a vital role in fostering community and connection among former students. They provide a platform for networking, mentorship, and collaboration, allowing alumni to stay connected with each other and their alma mater. Alumni groups also contribute to the institution's reputation and success by showcasing the achievements and contributions of its graduates. Over 150+ NIT Rourkela alumni in the US, Canada, UK, and India converged in the beautiful Pacific Northwest city of Seattle, Washington State, for the 9th annual NITROAA convention.
National Institute of Technology Rourkela Overseas Alumni Association, abbreviated as NITROAA, is the umbrella organisation of all NITR alumni living in the USA and Canada. NITROAA is a social and educational-based non-profit organisation, focussing on special programs to benefit NIT Rourkela, students, faculty and alums. Alumni spanning the seniormost 1965 batch to the youngest 2023 batch met over a 3-day event from Sep 1-3 and bonded over entertaining events like the inaugural NITROAA Cricket tournament, a desi standup comedy cruise over Seattle waters and thought-provoking keynote sessions.
They bonded over entertaining events like the inaugural NITROAA Cricket tournament, a desi standup comedy cruise over Seattle waters and thought-provoking keynote sessions. It was the first Land and Water Convention. The event connected Alumini to world-class shopping, dining, entertainment, and primary corporate headquarters. Also appealing to alums were the surrounding natural beauty, scenic views, and abundant outdoor activities.
The Seattle Convention team consisted of:
With support from the NITROAA Executives, Jit Goel (NIT Rourkela '1995), Manas Panda (NIT Rourkela '1992), Susant Jena (NIT Rourkela '1996), Nirakar Jena (NIT Rourkela ’2000), Gary Krishnan (NIT Rourkela '1972).
The three-day convention from September 1st to September 3rd began with the registration process followed by a cocktail reception. The cocktail party brightened the atmosphere; alums and their families were having a fantastic time at the celebration, full of excitement, amusing anecdotes, and pleasure. Overall, it was an excellent opportunity for them to bond.
As the second day of the convention got underway, the alums gathered for breakfast, followed by a fun game of cricket in which they all participated with much excitement and zeal. The opening ceremony and welcoming address by the distinguished alum speakers marked the conclusion of the general body meeting and the beginning of the evening. Dr Rukmini Iyer, Microsoft Corporate VP, was the featured keynote speaker with a thought-provoking talk on her career progression in the field of AI. A panel of NITR alumni consisting of Seema Sundara (‘91), Oracle, Samir Kumar (‘93), Amazon, and Akhil Ramesh (‘06), discussed the impact of AI on society, moderated by Ram Dutt (‘89). Featured guest Chaitra Vedullapalli, President, Women in Cloud, conducted an inspiring session on giving back to the alma mater, along with Omi Vaidya and Rukmini Iyer. Hon'ble Director Prof. K. Umammaheshwar Rao marked the event with a video address, as did Prof. Himanshu Sahu, Dean Alumni Relations, followed by an update on NITR & NITROAA collaboration on energy technology by Giridhar V Iyer (‘87).
The live desi rock band Rim Jhim (founded by Joydeep Tripathy) ensured that the audience danced throughout the entire night following the alum speeches. Subsequently, additional cultural and entertainment events took place. Omi Vaidya was the featured celebrity guest who entertained the audience in his inimitable style, mixed with life lessons from his experience.
The last day of the conference was devoted to activities on a leisurely cruise through Seattle's lakes and water, with Indian standup comedians providing infectious laughter the entire time. The first-ever land and water convention was a resounding success. Overall, the annual reunion offered a venue for networking and engaging with alums while promising an incredible time filled with fun, food, friends, and memories.
Regarding the convention's success, Joydeep Tripathy, Convenor, expressed the following sentiments;
"It was heartwarming to see so many NITR alumni gathered together. Many travelled from far away, many planned well in advance, and yet, many made last-minute decisions to attend and not miss the chance to spend the weekend with old friends. The 3-day event passed with clockwork precision with no disruptions or unplanned issues. NITROAA Cricket was a big hit with great teamwork and competitive spirit. The audience was fully immersed and engaged with our esteemed speakers. Live desi rock band Rim Jhim (founded by yours truly) kept the audience dancing through the night. The event ended with a pleasant cruise on Seattle lakes and sea with desi standup comedians providing joyful laughter. Outside of the programmed events, alums also enjoyed their bonding in different groups. I can proudly say that the goal of this convention to reignite friendships and celebrate NITR legacy was fully achieved."
Team MM extends its heartiest congratulations to the Seattle Convention Team for conducting the 9th annual convention of NITROAA successfully and wishes luck in their future endeavours.
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