May 10, 2021
Puneet Kundu (MS ’22) has become the first student at a regional campus to receive Northeastern’s 2021 Graduate Student Award in Leadership. The award recognizes graduate students who have demonstrated significant leadership and a deep commitment to giving back to members of Northeastern’s community or surrounding neighborhoods. One of two students across the university to be recognized this way, Kundu joined Theresa Davenport, a PhD student in Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology at Northeastern’s Marine Science Center, in garnering this year’s honors.
Kundu was part of the first international student cohort at the Toronto campus, beginning his studies online in April 2020 in the project management program and arriving in person in the summer of 2020. Even before leaving his home country of India for Canada, Puneet had begun planning a Toronto chapter of the Northeastern Project Management Student Organization. Working with other students at the Toronto campus, as well as Professor Adel Zadeh, Puneet succeeded in establishing this group and mounting a series of successful student events. These included events focused on helping newly arriving students settle in Toronto and events helping project management students navigate the concentrations available to them in their program.
Kundu is an assistant director of the Toronto chapter of the Project Management Institute. He has also worked as a student ambassador for the College of Professional Studies, connecting with prospective project management students to provide a student’s perspective on the degree and the Toronto campus experience. He has also demonstrated leadership and commitment to the community in less formal capacities, including personally delivering groceries to newly arrived students in quarantine.
“Puneet’s accomplishments would be impressive under any circumstances,” Chief Executive Officer and Regional Dean of Northeastern University Toronto Aliza Lakhani said in a letter to the Northeastern community. “Given the unprecedented challenges created by the pandemic, however, they are even more noteworthy. Puneet and his fellow students have demonstrated remarkable initiative, creativity, and resilience under very difficult circumstances.”