PPIA Program

“Diversity & Leadership in Public Service”

John Chu



“PPIA opened up more doors and opportunities to pursue careers I had never heard of.”

To John Chu, public service means making an impact, big or small, in order to benefit a person or a cause other than yourself. To him, public service comes in many forms and degrees, and is not necessarily limited to working in government or for a nonprofit.

John is an alum of the 2005 Junior Summer Institute at UC Berkeley. He attended Cornell University where he got his undergraduate degree in communications in 2006. He then went on to attend the Maxwell School at Syracuse University to get his Master’s of Public Administration in 2008.

Now working as a Senior Communications Specialist at the U.S. Department of Energy, John credits his JSI program with helping him understand that there are a number of ways to serve the public good. He believes it is important to pursue what makes you happy and is right for your life. In his words, “When you’re happy, you’ll do your best work.”

He says that his experiences helped propel him towards landing and completing the President Management Fellows program and moving to a senior level position in the Federal government at the age of 26.

John says that he is looking forward to “taking on more leadership roles in public service, getting involved in my community, and starting a family.”