Puja Kumar

Hometown: Boston, MA

Focus: Public Policy and Analysis; International Development

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

Bio: I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, but left all the Skyline Chili as a one year old to settle outside of Boston, Massachusetts. I attended University of Pittsburgh, where I graduated in 2014 with a B.S. in Psychology (with minors in Economics and French). My undergraduate internship at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, which focused on improving patient-care related outcomes, led me to pursue consulting in the life sciences following graduation. I moved back to Boston and worked in management consulting for 4 years prior to attending Evans. I enjoyed the exposure to a variety of cases, the technical skills, and the strategic thinking, but I was not entirely fulfilled by the work itself. Having always been inspired by my grandfather’s story of survival from the India-Pakistan Partition in 1947, I sought to transfer my skills to the international policy sector with a long-term goal of uplifting forced migrants from conflict or poverty. I am now back on that student grind at The Evans School, where I am focusing on policy analysis & evaluation in the context of international development. When I am not studying, I am checking out local parks (particularly dog parks), exploring different neighborhoods in Seattle, stuffing my face with tacos (or food in general), looking for random street art, and listening to a range of podcasts.

Why did you choose Evans? Aside from the strong academic component and the emphasis on technical skills in the curriculum, The Evans community is what swayed my decision to attend this program. The people at The Evans School have always been supportive, approachable, and engaging. Ever since student orientation, I have always felt a strong sense of community. The collaborative nature of Evans is best exemplified when working group projects -- everyone is willing to help each other out. I could not have picked a better fit with the amount of support I get from this community!  

Ask me about: Transition from professional to student life; East Coast v. West Coast; policy analysis & evaluation; food suggestions; exploring Seattle; how to keep plants alive during grad school.

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