Punnya Kalapurakkel is a graduated senior who will be attending Boston College in the fall. Born in Brighton, MA. in 2002, Punnya spent much of her early childhood glued to her television screen, watching the evening news with her father. She believes that it was this early exposure to the happenings of the world that would inspire her future inclination to public service
It was only after her sophomore year however, when she became a fellow at the climate justice organization Our Climate, that she began to take a specific interest in public service. As a fellow, she published side-by-side op-eds on the importance of equitable carbon pricing legislation along with her representative, Rep. Kevin Honan, in the local newspaper. After working as an advocate for climate justice, she wanted to continue learning about other issues that impacted her community. This interest led her to pursue an internship at the grassroots organization Community Labor United, where she worked on a child care campaign. Her role was primarily centered around interviewing community child care providers,whose businesses were struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and drafting their narratives for a storytelling project. The rawness and urgency that the activity introduced left her incredibly energized, and she ended the internship with a better understanding of the child care infrastructure in Massachusetts and the challenges facing her fellow community members.
After these enriching internships, Punnya has identified policy as being one area that she wants to delve deeper into, and so she is incredibly excited to be partnered with the Honorable Judge Patti Saris for the summer. She is eager to gain an understanding of how policy is interpreted in a court of law, and how the court system is integrated into the larger framework of government operations. Outside of these particular topics, Punnya hopes to refine and develop professional skills that she will take with her to college and beyond.