Rocky and Me: Puja Devi ’19 Senior Reflection

In the Rocky & Me series, Seniors reflect on their experiences during their time at Dartmouth.

Puja Devi, a member of the class of 2019, initially found her way to the Rockefeller Center during her sophomore year when she started to think more about how to improve her own professional development. She decided to take the Management and Leadership Development Program (MLDP), which became an invaluable learning experience about what it means to be a leader. 

Throughout her time at Dartmouth, Puja found herself becoming more aware of her own strengths and weakness and how to differentiate a leader and a manager. Puja began to feel more comfortable in shared spaces, whether it be academic, casual, or professional settings, as well as learning how to find her voice as a leader.

Puja studied abroad in India her sophomore year, an experience that opened her mind to a new culture and way of thinking. When she returned to campus, she wanted to find a way to reflect more about the experience. The Rockefeller Global Leadership Program (RGLP) offered her that opportunity. Through RGLP, Puja found that she learned the most by sharing perspectives with other participants. Something that stood out to her during the program was the role of body language in communication, and how important non-verbal communication is in leadership settings.

As a Government major, Puja credits Government 5: International Relations with sparking her interest in government and public policy, as well as her desire to pursue a career as a foreign diplomat. Puja’s experiences abroad also helped frame her passions and time here at Dartmouth. Puja studied abroad both in India and Barcelona, Spain, and participated in a volunteer service project in the Dominican Republic her senior year. Being immersed in a new culture allowed Puja to realize just how much one can learn from exploration and from cross-cultural connections. She plans on continuing learning through travel.

One of the most rewarding aspects of her time at Dartmouth was the mentorship she gained from students in classes ahead of her, who encouraged Puja to follow through on goals and try new things. Now as the upperclassman, Puja also finds it rewarding to be a mentor to younger students by actively sharing her experiences. 

“Do something challenging and set goals for yourself,” says Puja. “Follow your goals diligently and know that the sky is the limit.” 

As told to Bethany Malzman '19, Rockefeller Center Student Program Assistant for Communication