Thursday, Jan. 8, 2004

Abby Lunardini (510) 987-9004
cell (510) 332-7008

UC Center Welcomes First Class of Students to Capital

Sacramento, CA — The University of California Center Sacramento this week welcomes its first group of students as part of an innovative program that will provide hands-on learning and research opportunities in Sacramento's public policy arena to UC undergraduates from across the state.

The UC Center Sacramento Fellows Program for Undergraduates is an academic pilot program that combines an intensive course of study in public policy with guided internship and research opportunities within the offices of state elected officials, state agencies and other policy-making organizations in Sacramento.

"The program will give students a rare opportunity to learn about California's public policy process firsthand — not just through their coursework, but through the professional experiences they will build while living, interning and conducting research in the state capital," said Gary Dymski, director of the UC Center in Sacramento and a UC Riverside economics professor.

Dymski will begin instructing students today (Jan. 8) in a research seminar on policy-making and politics in Sacramento, as well as an elective course, 'Political Economy of the California Crisis."

Students are required to enroll in classes while working 24-32 hours per week. Internship placements have been made at various offices in Sacramento — including the governor's office. The 17 students in the inaugural class represent all eight of UC's undergraduate campuses (Berkeley, Davis, Irvine, UCLA, Riverside, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, and San Diego.)

The University of California Center Sacramento (UCCS) and the UCCS Fellows Program for Undergraduates were modeled in part on the UC's successful academic center and program in Washington, D.C., that combines student internships, class work and faculty research.

"This program is an exciting opportunity for students from across the state to learn about California's complex political and policy-making processes up close, and will no doubt help to create our next generation of leaders and policy-makers in Sacramento," said UC President Robert C. Dynes.

The UCCS was established by the UC Board of Regents in 2003 to expand the university's presence in Sacramento through a variety of public service and educational aims, including: building a systemwide student internship and academic program; increasing opportunities for faculty research on state policy issues; and providing a variety of training programs and seminars on key policy issues for policy-makers, UC students and faculty.

For more information on the University of California Center Sacramento or the UCCS Fellows Program for Undergraduates, please contact the center at (916) 445-5900.

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