HeritageIndia, a scholarship program, will help students connect with India. The application deadline is February 22.
For most immigrant parents, one of the only downsides of raising their kids in their adopted countries is the fear that the children will lose touch with their roots. But suppose if the part of their study program also includes a chance to get to know their ancestral land better?
Indiaspora, an Indian American non-profit aimed, in association with “360+,” a network of emerging leaders of US and Indian American leaders, has conceptualized such a program. The three-week HeritageIndia program is designed for the Indian diaspora to connect to their ancestral land.
The application deadline is February 22. Selected candidates will be announced by March 31.
WHAT: HeritageIndia, a three-week India tour
WHEN: July 21, 2019 to August 10, 2019
HOW TO APPLY: Visit the Indiaspora website
APPLICATION DEADLINE: February 22, 2019
As a part of the program, eight high school students will receive a fully funded scholarship to participate in the program, themed, “India’s Riches: History, Culture, Diversity, & Democracy.” The curriculum will include hands-on interactive exhibits, stimulating discussions, and a service project in India. The program is an effective measure that can help Indian American students growing up in the United States to make an informed and important connection with India.
“Heritage is such an integral part of someone’s identity,” said Gabrielle Trippe, Indiaspora’s Philanthropy Initiatives Manager. “We are proud to announce this program, which will give these students a potentially life-changing experience.”
Trippe said second- and third-generations from the diaspora often do not feel as close of a connection to India and the program is intended to “provide them with the opportunity to bridge this gap.”
The students will visit three areas of India that are geographically and culturally diverse and very well reflect the spirit of India. These places are New Delhi, Gujarat, and Kerala.
Sridhar Iyengar, who runs 360+ and has created youth immersion programs for a diverse group of students through the leadership collective, will oversee the project.
“There is an underserved part of our community who may not be able to experience India,” he said. “We hope this birthright program will provide them the means. Giving them the opportunity to travel to their roots should reinforce their connection to that heritage.”
The HeritageIndia program will start on July 21, 2019, and end on August 10, 2019.
Indiaspora is now accepting applications for the cohort. The program is open to high school students, who will be between ages 15 of 18 at the time of the trip and are of Indian descent. Preference will be given to those who have never been to India, Indiaspora said. Candidates will be chosen based on merit through an application process that includes short and long answer questions, it said.