Are you a college graduate obsessed with public policy issues? Have you dreamt of running for office in a state that you know could truly grow with the help of your opinionated self? This may be the chance for you to stretch your wings a bit and learn just what it’s like to be a Senator, by working alongside one.
Senator Janet Nguyen, who represents California’s 34th Senate District announced today, Tuesday, January 20 the availability of applications for the 2015-2016 California State Fellows program, an opportunity for college graduates to become full-time Senate staff members at the state Capitol in Sacramento for 11 months, beginning in October 2015.
“Being a fellow provides an excellent opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge of the legislative process,” said Senator Janet Nguyen in a press statement. “Whether your career goals are in the public or private sector, the Senate Fellows program provides valuable training.”
Not to mention, fellows are paid a stipend of $2,550 per month, plus health, vision and dental benefits. They also earn six units of graduate credit from Sacramento State University for the academic portion of the program.
Fellows are assigned to the personal or committee staff of a Senator and also participate in academic seminars with Senators, senior staff, journalists, lobbyists and state government officials. The fellowship program is operated by both the California Senate and the Center for California Studies at Sacramento State University.
Former Senate Fellows include current members of Congress and the California Legislature, constitutional officers, judges and numerous other elected officials and community leaders. Responsibilities will include researching public policy issues, assisting in the development of legislative proposals, analyzing and staffing legislation, assisting with constituent inquiries and casework, participating in meeting as the Senator’s representative, writing press releases and speeches and performing other delegated tasks. A five-week orientation at the beginning of the program will provide background on state government, the legislative process and major policy issues.
Anyone who will be at least 20 years of age and a graduate of a four-year college or university by September 1, 2015, is eligible to apply. There is no preferred major, but applicants should have a demonstrated interest in state government and public policy. Individuals with advanced degrees and those in mid-career are encouraged to apply.
Applications and brochures are available on the Senate’s website here and the program website here. The deadline for submitting applications is February 9, 2015. 18 Fellows will be selected in May after an initial screening of applications and a subsequent panel interview of finalists.
Senator Janet Nguyen was elected to represent California’s 34th State Senate District in 2014, becoming the first woman elected to represent the District, and the first Vietnamese-American in the country to be elected to the State Senate. Senator Nguyen is the highest-ranking Vietnamese American elected official in the United States. The 34th State Senate District includes a portion of Long Beach, as well as the cities of Fountain Valley, Garden Grove, Los Alamitos, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Westminster, the unincorporated communities of Midway City and Rossmoor, and portions of Anaheim, Huntington Beach, Orange.