To Public Policy, or Not to Public Policy

Posted by Cal-in-Sacramento Fellow Robert Nuñez 

I came in to the Cal-in-Sac program with a mission; I had the desire to figure out what I was going to do with the rest of my life. Simple right? After only 1 year as a Bear so far, I’m already entering my senior year. Naturally, I was beginning to get that “I have no skills or applicable knowledge” type of feeling, and freaking out about what was actually in store for me as a political science major with a public policy minor. My intention was to decide whether I would be spending most of my free time next year studying for law school, or begin preparing for graduate school.

While finding a definite answer is never easy, what I did discover is that my options are not as black and white as I thought, and that my future is not as bleak as I expected. One of the benefits of attending a University like Berkeley is being constantly bombarded by amazing opportunities, which could potentially give you a future. Cal-in-Sac has definitely been one of those opportunities.

Me with Senator Lara and me office colleagues.

Me with Senator Lara and my office colleagues.

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Political Diversity’s Impact on My Life

Posted by Cal-in-Sacramento Fellow Robert Nuñez 

When we talk about wanting or recognizing the benefits of a more diverse legislature, it’s not just some minority movement, or an issue of pride in which we all want our own team to win. The diversity I have seen in the Capitol is necessary for the health of a democracy in a diverse state like California. If there was a legislature composed completely of conservative white males who understood the issues that my family and I have had to endure, and created effective solutions that allowed my family and me to thrive, then I would be proud to call them my elected officials; unfortunately, as seemingly simple as it is to empathize with a person’s struggles, it’s far more difficult to truly understand what it actually feels like, and act accordingly. I have the privilege of getting to intern for Senator Ricardo Lara, a powerful man of color, and openly part of the LGBT community, who sits on some of the most powerful committees in the legislature, including chairing the Appropriations Committee. The Senator, his staff, and many of the other persons of color I have met at the Capitol truly embody a knowledge of the struggles I have had to face; If not by logic, they have been able to understand my issues by heart, by a raw emotional humanity which ads an extra dimension to politics.

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Robert with Senator Ricardo Lara

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Carli Yoro and Gaby Bermudez along with Robert grabbing a bite to eat after work to celebrate gabby birthday. Cal-in-Sac interns bring diversity to the capitol.

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