History

Wayne State University which was founded in 1868 consists of 13 schools and colleges offering over 400 major subject areas to more than 32,000 graduate and undergraduate students. WSU student body consists of students coming from different cultures and countries. Hundreds of Sri Lankan students (undergraduate and graduate) graduated from WSU in the past are well established in academic and industrial fields all over the world. After year 2000, there is a high demand to recruit Sri Lankan students to WSU due to the excellent performance done by past students. As a result, today there are over 50 Sri Lankan students studying in variety of fields such as Chemistry, Physics, Management, Engineering, Biology, Medical, Food Science and Pharmacy. When the student community keeps growing there was a necessity to establish a Sri Lankan student organization. In the year of 2006, Ajith Karunarathne who was a graduate student at that time took lead to establish the Sri Lankan Student Association (SLSA). The main objective was to assist new students coming to WSU to successfully adapt to the new culture and academic life. Also educate prospective graduate and undergraduate students regarding many academic opportunities available at WSU.  The SLSA-WSU constitution was prepared according to the WSU rules and regulations by the initial committee members; Nalaka Rannulu, Sanka Atapattu, Ajith Karunarathne, Gomika Udugamasooriya, Dharshan Talagala and Upul Attanayake who were graduate students at that time. The faculty support necessary to establish the SLSA were given by Dr. Punya Talagala and Dr. Rohana Talagala. They continue to give the full support and advise to organize events by SLSA even at the present. The SLSA logo was designed by Dharshan Talagala, which represent the union of WSU Sri Lankan students with rest of the Sri Lankans around the globe, to help Sri Lankan students who are in need for their education. At the time when SLSA was formed, there were limited established methods to provide web space for student associations in WSU. After several rounds of discussion and hard work, Sanka Atapattu and Ajith Karunarathne got the official approval for SLSA web space under the wayne.edu domain. Today, because of SLSA, all other student bodies are also privileged.


SLSA brings together all Sri Lankan students attending WSU via variety of social and cultural events so that we never felt alone. Also SLSA plays a major role as an ambassador to promote Sri Lankan culture at WSU. SLSA participate each year at the Global Festival organize by the office of international scholars and students with 35 other student groups. The taste of Sri Lankan cuisine is famous among WSU community as our stall is fully crowded during the global food festival. Also we celebrate Sri Lankan Independence Day, Sinhala – Hindu New Year, Vesak and Christmas annually. Even though we are thousands of miles away from our country, we haven’t forgotten our motherland as we organized charity work to support our brave soldiers and school children in need.


Further, we are blessed by having Great Lakes Buddhist Vihara few miles away from WSU. Buddhist monks lead by Bhante Sanchicha thero always welcome WSU students to Vihara and providing the sacred atmosphere of a temple. SLSA work very closely with GLBV. In 2012, annual Katina ceremony was organized by SLSA. In addition GLBV link WSU students with rest of the Sri Lankans live in Michigan.