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Davis United World College Scholars


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Tuning Her Campus In to the World

Aside from her academic work as a mechanical engineering major, Brishti Mandal (India, Mahindra UWC, Bucknell ’20) has devoted her campus years to sharing international student perspectives, and to focusing all of her peers on the world scene and global events.

“Whatever opportunity I have to voice my opinion, or participate in a conversation that brings into perspective the voice of a non-American, of an immigrant American, or an international student, I try to go,” Brishti says. “I go to speakers, I go to focus groups. I’m just constantly present.”

She has been director of Common Ground, an annual, student-run diversity retreat; co-chair of the International Student Advisory Board; and co-creator of the board’s series of “Fireside Chat” discussions of crises like the Hong Kong protests. As an RA, she has sought to raise global awareness within her dorm through emails, talks, and a news-focused bulletin board.

“I bring that kind of challenge to class,” she adds, “where I’m questioning not just my peers but also professors and staff members. ‘How can we change this? How can we push the boundary?’”

For her efforts, last spring Brishti received one of Bucknell’s coveted Diversity Awards, whose nominations come from students and other members of the campus community.

“How do we keep ourselves in tune with what’s happening in this moment out in the real world? That’s been my focus,” she sums up. “A human-rights crisis in any part of the world is a human-rights threat to every part of the world.”