Capital Fellows Programs

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Applications for the 2019-20 Capital Fellows Programs are now CLOSED.  Applications for the 2020-2021 fellowship year will be available late fall.  

The Center administers four fellowship programs, known collectively as the Capital Fellows Programs. These nationally recognized public policy fellowships offer unique experiences in policy-making and development in each branch of government.

Capital Fellows are placed at some of the highest levels of California state government and assist state legislators, senior-level executive staff, and court administrators with a broad range of public policy issues and projects and are typically given assignments with a significant amount of responsibility and challenges.

Information about the fellowship programs

Jesse M. Unruh Assembly Fellowship

Executive Fellowship

Judicial Fellowship Program   (Judicial Fellowship Blog)

California Senate Fellows

2,000 alumni have participated in the Capital Fellows Programs, and the ranks of former fellows include judges; members of the United States Congress and the State Legislature; state and local government officials; corporate executives; community and non-profit leaders; and university professors, administration and staff.

View notable former fellows in elected and judicial office


Fellowship applications

The 2019-20 deadline is Monday, February 11, 2019 at 5:00PM PST

2019-20 program application prompts

2019-20 Letters of Recommendation requirements

No previous legislative or political experience is required.

 Capital Fellows Receive

  •   $2,698 monthly stipend
  •   Health, dental and vision benefits
  •   Student loan deferments
  •   Graduate units from Sacramento State in Government or Public Policy
  •   Upon successful completion of the Fellowship: Capital Fellows Graduate Certificate in Applied Policy and Government

 Minimum Qualifications

1.   Have a bachelor's degree by September 1st of the fellowship year and either a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.5 or higher or a GPA of 2.5 or higher in the last 60 (semester) or 90 (quarter) units. 

2.   20 years of age or older by Sept. 1 of the fellowship year

3.   Non-U.S. citizens must provide proof of appropriate immigration status. The Capital Fellows Programs do not meet the requirements for F-1 or J-1 visas, nor any work permits requiring participation in the E-verify system.

PLEASE NOTE: Fellows are prohibited from outside academic studies during the fellowship year (i.e. graduate work outside the fellowship seminar, law school, etc.).  Applicants must be prepared for full-time employment, Monday through Friday, 8:00am - 5:00pm. 


Frequently Asked Questions

Fellowship Poster

The Center also administers the Federal-State Relations Fellowship which places a Capital Fellow with the California Institute for Federal Policy Research in Washington, DC

Below are links to some recent articles about the Capital Fellows Programs that highlight individual experiences of several fellows in their placements.