Tandon Has “Engaged” Alumni (in All Senses of the Word)

students holding a balloon

On his first visit to the MetroTech Center, Raghav Ravisekar had a difficult time finding Tandon’s graduate admissions office. Wandering in front of the Dibner Building, he came across Radhika Mandra, who was similarly lost. Discovering that they shared a destination, the two eventually made their way together to Wunsch and the correct office.

student proposing on kneeThat encounter, back in 2012, was the start of a journey that found them becoming best friends, earning M.S. degrees in computer science in 2014, and finding good jobs in New York City — his at the financial firm Tradeweb and hers at the Blackstone Group. They were often sent by their respective companies to recruit at Tandon job fairs, providing them with a welcome chance to revisit their cherished alma mater.

When their friendship blossomed into something more, Raghav knew he wanted to pop the question in the exact spot where the couple had first met. He approached Director of Alumni Relations Valerie Cabral to make sure his romantic plan — to propose to Radhika in front of the Dibner Building, with a large group of friends and fellow alumni waiting in the wings to celebrate — would meet Tandon’s approval. “This school is the place that made us who we are and provided us with so much opportunity,” he explained. “So it’s the perfect place for us to begin the next phase of our lives together.”


Not only did Cabral agree, but she offered to host a champagne-and-cake reception in Dibner once Raghav had surprised Radhika with the ring. Surprise was, indeed, the operative word. “I didn’t realize he had any of this planned,” the bride-to-be marveled, “but it was really perfect. From the ring to the cake to having our friends here to rejoice with us, he thought of absolutely everything.”

The couple explained that while a proposal of this type is not common in their culture, where marriage planning often starts with both sets of parents sitting down to make the arrangements, they will follow a more traditional route for the wedding, scheduled to take place in November of this year in India, with 1,000 guests in attendance.

Might they consider coming back to the school in November 2017, to celebrate their first anniversary? “Absolutely,” they say. “We’ll always be grateful for the education we received and the friends we made here, and Tandon will always be a very special place to us.”