Aspiring politicians lurking among the UC student body may now garner fresh material for their résumés.

University of California undergraduates interested in public policy now have the opportunity to participate in a research and internship program at the UC Center in Sacramento (UCCS). The UC Board of Regents created the UCCS program in 2003 to give students the opportunity to intern and research on state policy issues. This winter is the first internship program.

“We are really excited to have the program up and running,” UCCS Internship Director Erika Peters said. “It has been an idea that the University’s had for a while to make a greater presence in Sacramento.”

The UCCS program provides students of all majors from each UC campus with the opportunity to take part in internships suitable to their interests, Peters said. Students in the program intern at the state capital in the offices of senators, legislative committees and other related positions.

“The program offers students the opportunity to build professional skills while enhancing their academic skills,” UCCS Director Gary Dymski said. “The program provides a professional environment for students, showing them how to succeed and helping them to flourish in the field.”

According to the UCCS website, students must have a 3.0 GPA and junior standing to be eligible. Participants will intern between 24 and 32 hours a week, and they will enroll in 12 to 16 units consisting of the internship and a required seminar course and/or elective courses. This quarter’s elective courses focus on California’s current political and economic standing. The courses are taught at the UC Sacramento Center.

“We are open-minded when viewing applications,” Dymski said. “We do not want to overlook students who can function well in a work environment, and who will benefit in Sacramento.”

Each UC campus selected three applications and sent them on to the UCCS, Dymski said. From that pool, 17 students were accepted to the inaugural program.

“We are anticipating more students to enter the program next quarter,” Peters said.

Jessica Pliner, a UCSB senior law and society major, was accepted to the Winter 2004 program and is currently working in a government office in Sacramento.

“A lot is going on during this first week – it is very exciting to be around it all and having the opportunity to learn more about the industry,” she said.

Students interested in the program can visit the UCCS website at or contact Coordinator of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities Nancy Anderson for information packets and applications forms.