June Y. Chu appointed to be next dean of Pierson College

June Y. Chu will be the next dean of Pierson College, announced Yale College Dean Jonathan Holloway in the Pierson dining hall on May 6.

June Y. Chu with Dartmouth fraternity Gamma Delta Chi's husky Riggins.
June Y. Chu with Dartmouth fraternity Gamma Delta Chi’s husky Riggins.

“I am confident that Ms. Chu will make many significant and positive contributions to the life of the col­lege,” said Holloway.

Chu earned her B.A. in psychology from Bryn Mawr College; her Ed.M., with a concentration in human development and psychology, from Harvard University; and her M.A. and Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of California-Davis. She has taught courses in psychology at the University of California-Davis; at the University of Pennsylvania she has taught in both the Asian American Studies Program and the Graduate School of Education.

Prior to coming to Yale, Chu was the director of the Pan Asian American Community House at the University of Pennsylvania for seven years and most recently served as assistant dean of undergraduate students at Dartmouth College.

“In these various teaching and administrative roles she has sought to help students not only succeed academically but to expand their understanding of themselves within and beyond their campus environment,” said Holloway. “She is eager to combine her enthusiasm for academic administration and her love of teaching in the role of residential college dean.”

Chu has published articles and presented papers on a range of topics, from the advising of first-year college students to family, cultural, and psychological dimensions of the experiences of Asian American and Asian adolescents. Her extensive research background has involved work with ethnic families, autistic youth, and best practices in higher education advising. The University of Pennsylvania honored her with a Distinguished Service Award. At Dartmouth College she turned her talents to a wide array of liaison work with other college constituencies, including the First Year College Writing Program, the Office of Visa and Immigration Services, the athletics program, the crisis management team, and the Title IX Coordinator.

In an email to YaleNews, Chu wrote she is “honored” to have been chosen to serve as dean of Pierson and to be part of a “vibrant, intellectually engaging, and dynamic community.” She explained she is looking forward to supporting students in their academic endeavors, advising them on a “whole host of variables that affect student success,” and the opportunity to teach again as an advisor and instructor.

Chu also commented on the role Pierson head of college played in convincing her to come, writing, “In all of my conversations with head of college Stephen Davis, I found myself valuing his views on diversity, equity, partnerships, and academic success. I look forward to a great collaborative relationship with him.”

Originally from Cheshire, Connecticut, Chu has lived in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and northern California. As a child and teenager, she spent summers in Taipei and Taiwan, and is bilingual in Mandarin Chinese. She has visited Belgium, Russia, France, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and China, and hopes to add Bali and the Galapagos Islands to her international travel CV, said Holloway.

Chu will move into the Dean’s Suite in Pierson this summer, and said she looks forward to bringing her talents and enthusiasm as an instructor of spinning classes and body combat, a non-contact mixed martial art, to Pierson and to Yale.

Holloway also thanked outgoing dean, Amerigo Fabbri, for his service to Pierson and Yale. Fabbri had announced his intention in September to step down from the deanship — a position he has held since 2005 — at the end of this academic year.