BU and India

140 Years of History

  • Courses in Indian history, language, and literature were offered at BU as early as 1869, and Sanskrit was taught as early as the 1870s.
  • BU’s first students from India enrolled in 1873.
  • The School of Theology hired its first Indian professor, Eddy Asirvatham, in 1945.
  • Bengali poet Amiya Chakravarti, a close associate of Mahatma Gandhi and Nobel Prize-winning writer Rabindranath Tagore, became a BU professor in 1953. He was later awarded the Padma Bhushan—the third-highest civilian award in India—for service to India in literature and education.
  • During the 1980s, the Ford Foundation funded a PhD program in economics at Boston University for Indian bureaucrats. Alumni include Rahul Khullar (GRS’84, ’85), India’s secretary of commerce.

Students and Scholars from India

Indian students comprise BU’s second-largest international student population and make up 8.6% of all international students. India was also the University’s second-largest source of international scholars.

BU Centers and Institutes with India Expertise

Indian Student Clubs at BU

BU has over a dozen student social and service clubs related to India on campus. The BU India Club was founded in 1981 and serves as the umbrella organization for all India student clubs. It currently has more than 300 members and is one of the largest and most active cultural groups on campus. Their two flagship culture shows draw audiences of more than 1,000 and their annual GarbaFest is one of the largest garba dance competition in the US.

Students interested in gaining an internship in India should contact Deepti Nijhawan, Director of India Initiatives, to explore possibilities.