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~Bangladesh Native Wins 109th Annual Hoop-rolling Contest~

For immediate release:
April 24, 2004

CONTACT:
Mary Ann Hill,
781-283-2376


WELLESLEY, Mass. -- Nandita Ahmed, a cinema and media studies major from Dhaka, Bangladesh, is the winner of this morning's 109th annual hoop-rolling competition at Wellesley College. Ahmed, who will graduate on May 28, was met at the finish line by Wellesley College President Diana Chapman Walsh (herself the winner of the 1966 hoop-rolling contest), who presented Ahmed with a bouquet of flowers.

In keeping with tradition, Ahmed was promptly propelled by her classmates to the edge of Lake Waban and tossed into the chilly water. Traditionally, the winner of the contest, which first began in 1895, was said to be the first in her class to marry. These days, victory is seen as a sign that the winner will be the first to achieve success, however she defines it.

In another tradition, Ahmed's "little sisters," juniors Seema Rathod and Minakshi Biswas and sophomore Zafrin Rahman, arrived at the starting line early Saturday before the race began to assure Ahmed a prime spot.

At Wellesley, Ahmed has been active in the Slater International student organization and the Wellesley Association of South Asian Cultures.

Nearly 200 Wellesley College seniors, most dressed in academic gowns, made this morning's 1/4 mile dash, rolling old-fashioned wooden hoops in a race to the finish line.

Since 1875, Wellesley College has been a leader in providing an excellent liberal-arts education for women who will make a difference in the world. Its 500-acre campus near Boston is home to 2,300 undergraduate students from all 50 states and 68 countries. For more information, go to http://new.wellesley.edu/.

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  • Date Modified: April 24, 2004
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