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  • CAAA Virtual Diwali Festival 2020!

CAAA Virtual Diwali Festival 2020!

  • 11/13/2020
  • 7:30 PM - 10:00 PM
  • Virtual Event (Details provided to Registrants)

Join fellow Cornellians, friends, and family in celebrating the festival of lights in a massive multi-tiered event co-hosted by the Cornell Asian Alumni Association and our South Asian student groups on campus.

  • 7:30 PM - Chai Experience, Speakers, Dinner, and Student performances
  • 9:00 PM - Afterparty and Student/Alumni Mixer, led by our Cornell Students

Registration Details

  • This event is free and open to all current students, alumni, family, and friends of Cornell! 
  • Registrants can buy tea and dinner for themselves, as well as for their children on campus or their friends and family. It will be shipped directly to them. 

The Tea

Curated Tea Package: Organic Ginger Tea (20 sachets), and a custom Chai blend (4 oz) created specifically for Cornellians! (Link to company chai is for picture reference only). Generously provided by Michael Harney ’77, of Harney & Sons Fine Teas.

  • Student Price: $15.00
  • Alumni & Friend Price: $25.00
  • 100% of proceeds from tea will be donated to Cornell Promise.

The Dinner

Four vegetarian-friendly food packages, to serve two. Try Hyderabadi and Kashmiri biriyanis, as well as Dal Tadka and Rajma Masala. Generously provided by Susan Guerin ’83, of World Finer Foods.

  • Student/Alumni & Friend Price: $20.00


About the Event

The Chai Experience: After a micro lecture on the Indian Tea Industry from Dr. Sarah Besky, learn about and how to make one of the many South Asian variations of chai with tea from Harney and Sons Fine Teas (curated by Michael Harney ’77). 100% of the proceeds from the tea package will be donated to Cornell Promise.

Working with Cornell alumni, we bring you tea and drinks delivered to your homes and dorms!

In addition to chai, experience authentic Indian cuisine developed by the Master Chefs at ITC hotels, brought to you by Kitchens of India (organized by Susan Guerin ’83 of World Finer Foods).

Learn about our alumni in India, and how they celebrate Diwali with their Cornell family.

Watch our students, as they educate us about regional differences in Diwali celebrations and stretch their performing muscles as they provide us with singing and dancing, social distancing style.

We’ll cap off the night with a student-alumni mixer to connect our students with alumni from around the world. Mingle in small discussion groups centered around Cornell and Diwali. Share your favorite campus activities and learn about Diwali and how our students celebrate the holidays. Moderated by the students of Society for India.


  • Dr. Sarah Besky, Associate Professor at the ILR school
  • Susan Guerin ’83, President and CEO of World Finer Foods
  • Rishabh Gupta ’06, President of the Cornell Club of Mumbai
  • Michael Harney ’77, Vice President of Harney & Sons Fine Teas
  • Dr. Ryan Lombardi, Vice President for Student & Campus life at Cornell
  • Bhavani Parameswar, President of Indivate Inc. (an ITC group company)
  • Samir Somaiya ’90, MEng ’92, MBA ’93, Chairman of Godavari Biorefineries and President of Somaiya Vidyavihar

Involved Student Groups and Performers: 

  • Cornell Society for India 
  • Cornell South Asian Council
  • Cornell Hindu Student Council
  • Cornell Tarana
  • Cornell Anjali
  • Cornell Spicmacay
  • Cornell Bhangra
  • Asha Cornell
  • and more!

Dress Code: Your favorite Zoom-meeting outfit.

If you want to get dressed up for Diwali please do! Not sure what to wear? If in doubt, wear Cornell Red.


CAAA collaborated with Society for India and students on campus to bring this program to you, with the support of the A3C and South Asian Council.

Event Questions? Email Moyouri Bhattacharjee at

Registration Questions? Email Brendan West at

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