Three University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public and International Affairs students — Megan Canfield, Adam Diedrich, and Andrew Tuznik — have advanced as finalists in the highly competitive Presidential Management Fellowship program.

They join a long list of GSPIA alumni who have launched their public service careers through the PMF program. The two-year appointment provides participants with leadership training and experience across functional areas, offices, and in some cases, different agencies in the Executive branch of government.

For Canfield, a second-year student in the Master of Public and International Affairs (MPIA) program, the guidance and determination of her classmates was invaluable.

“I was encouraged to apply to PMF by my fellow classmates. Even though the odds were long, everyone was buckling down to do the application,” said Canfield. “It inspired me. I like that we all have big dreams and aren’t afraid to chase them.”

A GSPIA Alumni Fellowship Award winner, Canfield is interested in a myriad of policy issues ranging from poverty, food security and homelessness to environmental protection and conservation. She is looking forward to the opportunities in which the PMF will enhance her leadership skills and allow her to explore the opportunities available in different government agencies.

Diedrich, another second-year MPIA student, said that participating in the Hesselbein Leadership in International Affairs Forum and his experiential learning experiences at GSPIA’s Matthew B. Ridgway Center for International Security Studies was beneficial to his application.

Before coming to GSPIA in 2018, Diedrich served as a U.S. Army paratrooper. He is currently in Washington, DC in GSPIA’s DC Semester program and is interning at the U.S. State Department.

“I am a big believer in public service and see this upcoming phase of my career as a continuation of my public service,” Diedrich said. “The PMF program will provide me with the opportunity to explore different roles within the federal government and see, not only where I fit best, but also where my talents will be of most value.”

Second-year Master of International Development (MID) program Andrew Tuznik said his future goals are to take on a managerial role in a government agency, producing positive outcomes for disadvantaged populations.

“PMF will give me vital experience and set me on a course to achieve those goals,” Tuznik said.