The Capital Fellows Programs are public policy fellowships in
California state government, administered by the Center for
California Studies at California State University, Sacramento.
These nationally renowned programs include the California Senate
Fellows, Executive Fellowship Program, Jesse M. Unruh Assembly
Fellowship Program and the Judicial Administrative Fellowship
64 Capital Fellows are selected annually - 18 Assembly Fellows,
18 Executive Fellows, 18 Senate Fellows, and 10 Judicial
Administration Fellows - to work 10-11 months as full-time
staff-members in the California State Assembly, California State
Senate, California Executive Branch or within the California
Judiciary. All fellowship assignments are in the Sacramento area,
with the exception of the Judicial Administration program, which
has placements throughout California, including Los Angeles, the
Bay Area, San Diego and Sacramento.
Capital Fellows are placed at some of the highest levels of
state government. They act as assistants to members of the
California Assembly and Senate, senior executive branch staff,
court administrators and other top-ranking state government
officials. They work on a broad range of public policy issues and
projects and are directly involved in the policy making process.
They help to draft and analyze legislation; coordinate projects;
work with constituents and special interest groups; write grants,
speeches and press releases; conduct policy briefings; and work
with court project development and implementation. Participants are
well prepared for government and public service careers and many
are offered positions within California state government upon
completion of the program.
The Academic Program
The programs also include academic seminars, and fellows earn
graduate credits in Government or Public Policy and Administration
from Sacramento State. Each program pays for the fees for the
graduate units earned by the fellows.
The Fellowship Year
The fellowships begin in October with an orientation that
provides a working knowledge of state government structure and the
legislative process, with key people including legislative members,
senior staff, journalists, lobbyists and state government
Fellows receive a monthly stipend of $2,550/month; medical,
dental and vision benefits; and student loan deferments.
The only prerequisite for the programs is a bachelor's degree in
any major and a demonstrated interest in state government and
public service. Applicants must be at least 20 years of age by
September 1 of the fellowship year and recent grads, graduate,
postgraduate and mid-career applicants are welcome to apply.
Fellows come from all economic, cultural, career and educational
backgrounds, and no previous legislative or political experience is
required. Applicants from outside of California are welcome to
apply. Fellows are not required to be U.S. citizens, but they must
provide proof of appropriate immigration status. The Capital
Fellows Programs do not meet the requirements for F-1 or J-1
The application deadline for the class of 2015-16 is February 9,
2015 and all applications can be obtained online at: www.csus.edu/calst/programs.
Semifinalists must be present for a personal interview in
Sacramento or Los Angeles in late April and early May, and final
selections are made in late May.
For each individual fellowship, applicants must submit an online
application (www.csus.edu/calst/programs), college
transcripts, three letters of recommendation, a policy statement on
a topic outlined in the application and a personal statement.
Applicants may apply to more than one program depending on their
interests. Each program is unique to the branch of government it
serves. Only apply to the programs that truly interest you, and
make sure you individualize each application.