Courtesy of University of California
Courtesy of University of California

On Feb. 18, University of California President Janet Napolitano announced the creation of the Presidential Public Service Fellowship program with the intent to spark UC undergraduate interest in pursuing public service careers. This program will provide $2,500 in need-based financial support to students who apply and are accepted into either the UC Washington Program (UCDC) or the UC Center Sacramento (UCCS).

A combined total of 1,000 students take part in either program each school year and are immersed in the workings of the American political process.

The first cohort of students will be selected to receive this fellowship for the fall 2016 program. A total of 27 fellows will be chosen, with three students from each of the undergraduate campuses —  two for the UCDC program and one for the UCCS program. Fellows will be chosen on the basis of financial need, service for the public good and commitment to civic engagement.

Although most of the program expenses are covered by regular tuition and fees, each fellow will receive $2,500 to assist in offsetting internship-related costs, as well as helping to tackle incidental expenses that students may be subject to such as those for travel and purchase of proper business attire.

Estimated costs for participating in the UCDC program are approximately $11,572 based on an 11-week quarter. For the UCSS program, costs range from around $10,961 – $11,579.

“I think that the fellowship program will be extremely helpful. Ucdc (sic) is expensive,” voiced Nicole Lynn Martin, a fourth-year sociology law and society major who participated in UCDC last summer interning for the U.S. Department of Commerce for the Minority Business Development Agency and now currently works for UCDC program as a peer coordinator.

April 8 is the deadline for UCR students to apply for the fall 2016 UCDC program and May 5 will mark the cut-off for the fall 2016 UCCS program applications.

Both programs are open to students of all majors at each of the undergraduate UC campuses and include an internship paired with academic coursework. Students who are interested in the UCDC program are required to possess a cumulative 3.0 GPA or above and must submit an application, two letters of recommendation, personal statement, resume and an official transcript. For the UCCS program, applicants need to submit an application, resume, transcript, faculty endorsement form, two letters of recommendation and an essay.