CAPAL Public Service Scholars & Interns

2023 Fall Interns

CAPAL Public Service Interns

CAPAL Public Service Interns are placed in DC and regional offices throughout the country. These internship positions provide students with public service experience in a range of topics and areas. CAPAL has partnerships with USDA APHIS, USDA NRCS-Wisconsin, USDA ARS, The Brookings Institution, U.S. Forest Service, WHIAANHPI, and the Asian American Scholars Forum.

CAPAL Public Service Interns


Ellie Hung

Ellie Hung is an outgoing freshman at Pasadena City College majoring in Political Science on track to transfer her sophomore year through the University of Southern California Trojan Transfer Program to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies & Planning/Real Estate Development. Because she grew up in a small, unincorporated, and underrepresented city, Ellie is inspired to work directly in the Public Sector and dedicate her career to finding solutions to the homelessness crisis in California. She is passionate about sustainability, social innovation, and real estate. Alongside being a full-time PCC honors student, Ellie is also pursuing her real estate license and hopes to contribute that knowledge and experience to her future involvement in the Public Sector. 

As a recent high school graduate, Ellie’s work during her senior year was dedicated to the establishment of more eco-friendly habits in her school, which included the establishment of a recycling collection program on her campus. Within the first 9 months, the program successfully collected over 300 pounds of recyclable products, which turned into donations to her school’s own Special Needs program.

UPDATED Ye_Emily Headshot

Emily Ye

Emily Ye is a rising senior at New York University majoring in Global Liberal Studies under the concentration Politics, Rights and Development. As a native New Yorker, she has always enjoyed exposure to the vibrant cultures and rich backgrounds that the city has to offer. Since highschool, she has been involved in bringing matters of diversity, equity and inclusion to the forefront of her school community. This sparked her interest to pursue a career in public service and increase AAPI community representation. Today she is involved in non-profit organizations that seek to promote impact in minority communities and create equal opportunity for historically disadvantaged groups. She aspires to contribute to reform on urgent issues regarding the lives of the everyday person alongside like-minded and passionate advocates. In her free time, she enjoys reading philosophy, exploring new cities and listening to music.


Emma Nguyen

Emma Nguyen (she/they) is a current junior at Dartmouth College. She is majoring in Quantitative Social Sciences and double-minoring in Southeast Asia Studies and Urban Studies. Their interests in public policy, data analysis, research, and social justice combine with their background as a Japanese-Vietnamese woman growing up in New York City to create data-informed policy recommendations for marginalized communities across the US. On campus, Emma is the treasurer and an active member of the Tabard, a Gender-Inclusive Greek House dedicated to promoting inclusivity and acceptance for marginalized students. She is also involved with the Dartmouth Asian American Studies Collective (DAASC), where they work with students and administration to advocate for Asian American studies and spaces on campus. Emma is also dedicated to service for others, working both as a barista on campus and as an intern with the DIFUSE project. At DIFUSE, she helps promote data science education in STEM, social science, and humanities classrooms through the creation and implementation of data science modules. In their freetime, Emma likes to cook, listen to music, thrift, dance, and explore cities.

Tong_Olivia Headshot (2)

Olivia Tong

Olivia Tong (she/they) is a recent graduate from New York University with a B.A. in Politics and a minor in Public Health. Olivia is pursuing a dual-degree program and is on track to receive her MPA-PNP in Public Policy. Born and raised in New York City, she has been heavily influenced by the diverse experiences of those around her, especially her family roots in Hong Kong. She is passionate about intersectional and equitable justice, coalition-building and community organizing, and the potential for public policy to bring about positive, visible change to current institutions to better serve underrepresented populations. Her experiences include working on political campaigns to elect leaders to New York’s government and interning at a national civil rights organization fighting for LGBTQIA+ communities and everyone living with HIV/AIDS. Olivia hopes to become one of many voices that can empower and represent AANHPI individuals and their needs. She is incredibly grateful to her role models who have shaped who she is today, and is looking forward to joining the CAPAL cohort for an opportunity to contribute to and learn more about public service.


Zoe Lee-Park

Zoe Lee-Park is a second-year Master of Environmental Science student at the Yale School of the Environment. She studies the normative theory of environmental justice, within a law and society framework; eugenics and environmental justice; and the leading roles of Asian American women in the environmental justice movement. From Fall 2023 through Summer 2024, Zoe is interning at the United States Forest Service: she is conducting interviews and authoring stories on environmental justice for the agency. In her free time, Zoe serves as the President of the Yale Asian Graduate Network. Zoe holds a B.A. in Legal Studies and a B.S. in Society and Environment from the University of California, Berkeley. After Yale, she will pursue her J.D. and Ph.D. Zoe seeks to serve her communities in all her future work.