Love Letter to BASHA: BASHA Recap Part 1

Category Student Voices


Samia Afrose Class of '25
Authored on April 15, 2024



I cannot fathom the growth, strength, love, and comfort I feel in this community. Every day it is because of you, the Bengali Association of Students at Harvard (BASHA), that I am grateful to have taken on the role of being the leader of this organization, and a member of this family.

Not only am I grateful for the BASHA community, but I cannot thank the BASHA board enough for putting on so many successful events and creating an environment that welcomes all identities. I want to take the time to look back at some of the amazing events we all spent so much time and effort on.

1. Adda Night - Cha and Board games

Our first-ever event as BASHA Board 2024 - Cha and Board Games. I don’t know about you all, but I was definitely nervous - Will we have enough cha? Will a lot of people come? Will they enjoy our event? Without a doubt, this was a strong start to 2024. Everyone was catching up after winter break, sipping on their cha, eating cake rusks on the side, and getting competitive over our many games: Ludo, Uno, Pictionary, Jeopardy, and more!

2.Sip and Cinema

Photo of Namira Mehedi and Samia Afrose at BASHA movie night

Of course, we had to stream the iconic movie featuring our fellow Bengali Bollywood actress, Kajol Mukherjee, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge. It was so nice to be able to converse and watch this amazing romance movie while sipping on mocktails, made by our amazing BASHA board members, and munching on snacks and candy.

3.Bangla Table

What is a better way to learn the various dialects of Bangla than talking to each other in the language at dinner and playing Bangla telephone? It is so nice to be able to come together and teach and learn the language from each other whether we start from the basics, or we are fluent. I could sit and speak in Bangla with you all for hours.

4.Ekushey February Speaker Event

Our first Academic-Political event of the year. Thanks to hours of dedication by our lovely academic-political chairs, we were able to host a panel discussion with Assistant Professor Reshmaan Hussam at the Harvard Business School and Associate Professor Nafisa Tanjim at Worcester State University. This panel discussion centered around Ekushey February, to recognize the sacrifices and protests to defend Bangla as the national language of Bangladesh in 1952.

5.Khana and Karaoke
Our first collaboration of the 2024 calendar year with the Harvard College Pakistani Student Association. It was truly entertaining to be able to sing to our heart's desire and off the top of our lungs while eating warm shingara and piaju.

6.Mai Soli x Women's Week Event

Speaker Aria Mustary speaking about the Mai Soli Foundation

Our second Academic-Political event of 2024 was a collaboration with the Harvard College Women’s Center during Women’s Week where we highlighted the Mai Soli Foundation by having one of the founders Aria Mustary come and speak to us about her story and her work. This was truly inspiring and touching, and to top it all off with iftar/dinner and conversation.
7.Giving with BASHA - Three Week Fundraiser

Two students participating in Pie-in-the-Face Fundraiser

One of the last events I will highlight this time is our Giving with BASHA Fundraising event where every week we fundraise for a different country - Bangladesh, Sudan, and Palestine. We fundraised by hosting small events such as Pie-Board-in-the-Face, Fundraiser Bingo, and fundraising at our biggest event of the year, Boishakhi Mela. We raised hundreds of dollars for each country and we are extremely grateful to be able to help give to those in need.

These are only half of the events that we have organized and executed. This truly shows how motivated the BASHA Board is and how strong the BASHA community is. Thank you for making this my BASHA, my home.

Samia Afrose


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Samia Afrose Class of '25

Hi! My name is Samia Afrose.