A Message from the Director

Owen Holmes '93 (M.A.)

This summer, we had another great group of students, 14 total and 4 from other CSU campuses. You will see meet them in this newsletter. I have been fortunate to have Esmeralda Orozco as my program assistant this year. Esmeralda was a Spring 2018 DC Scholar where she interned with Sen. Kamala Harris’ office. I want to thank each of the internship sites for their support this summer for each of our students.

In our next and final newsletter of this year, you will meet the Cal State DC Scholars Advisory Board. Without this group of advisers and supporters, many of them DC Scholar alumni, this program would not be where it is today.

Finally, let me thank several organizations that have provided generous support to the program this year: California Foundation for Stronger Communities; Cofiroute USA and Caritas Corporation. These organizations understand the value of the Cal State DC Scholars program and the opportunities that their support provide for our students. Thank you to them and all of our supporters.

Meet the Faculty

Dr. Robert F. Castro - summer residential faculty

Rob is a Professor of political science at CSUF. He holds a BA in Criminology, Law & Society from U.C. Irvine, a Ph.D., in Political Science from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and a J.D. from the UCLA School of Law. Dr. Castro joined the Cal State DC Program last summer 2017 and returned this summer leading students in an exciting learning experience.


Summer Reception - Belle Haven Country Club , Alexandria, VA

Thanks to Vicki ‘76 and Fabrice Vasques for hosting our annual summer reception in June for current scholars, DC scholar alumni, supporters and campus representatives.

Meet the Scholars

Natalie Serrano

Tustin, CA

Office of Congressman Lou Correa (D-CA) '80

Autumn Vanderhook

Yorba Linda, CA

House Foreign Affairs Committee ( Majority staff - Congressman Ed Royce) '77

Alexandra Theodotou

San Francisco State University

Aliso Viejo, CA

National Defense University Foundation

Hasani Olalde

Riverside, CA

Kyle House Group

Elisabetta Cirrito

Brea, CA

Achieving the Dream

Helen Chavez

La Puente, CA

National Homeless Coalition

Mark Burroughs

California State University, Chico

Santa Rosa, CA

Office of Congressman Mike Thompson

Vivian Chan

Elk Grove, CA

Washington Internship Student Housing

Justin Liu

La Habra, CA

Office of Congressman Lou Correa (D-CA) '80

Alexa Flores

Twentynine Palms, CA

Office of Congressman Paul Cook

Deanna Taylor

Brea, CA

U.S Marshals Service

Ruby Robles

California State University, Dominguez Hills

Montclair, CA

Office of Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán

Marley Smith-Peters

California State University, Chico

Chico, CA

Lexington Institute

Nicole Kaylor

Fullerton, CA

Office of Congressman Mark Takano (D-CA)

Impressions of DC

"I remember visiting DC before when I was younger, and seeing the beautiful monuments and information-packed museums, but now that I am older, I am able to see and remember much more. Within the first two weeks, I witnessed more than I ever would have expected, whether that meant speeches from prominent political figures, expensive food at lavish cocktail parties, or hands-on work at my own internship. Even in my off hours, there is always something to explore. I am able to move from the many free museums here to islands within the Potomac, or even ride the metro to the very end to see nearby states." Alexandra Theodotou

I’m very blessed to be able to have the opportunity to be in the heartland of American politics and to be able to witness the rich history of American culture through monuments, buildings, and art. My experience has been unforgettable from networking with congressional offices, alumni, and fellow students. Working here in DC has helped me develop new skills that I will carry for the rest of my professional career. By being part of a very dynamic, professional, and demanding internship can hopefully open the doors to many new things for my future." Hasani Olalde

"The city is gorgeous and is so lively. I love the feeling of how busy and professional everyone is. Working at the Capitol is a dream come true, I pinch myself every day that i get to work in an environment surrounded by other young professionals working to better our country. Sitting in on meetings with the most influential leaders of our country is unreal. I feel so grateful that I get to wake up every day to come work at a place where so many other great people before me have worked. I attend briefings, meetings, answer phone calls and help out the staff in any way possible. I love attending briefings and listening to new research and information. It feels awesome to be at the epicenter of politics. This experience has given me the clarity I wanted for my career path. It has gone by so quickly, all I can say is I wish it would last longer!" Nicole Kaylor

"I intern with the U.S. Marshals in the division of Tactical Operation Special Deputations Department. The department has a small team of employees and we all work well together. I've learned about the U.S. Marshals as a governmental law enforcement agency and have been exposed to other different federal agencies and departments. I will be able to use this experience with my career choice in the criminal justice field. This has been a great learning experience, I have had the opportunity to network with professionals in my field and make new friends. I would recommend this experience to other students wanting to explore our country’s history and gain valuable work experience." Deanna Taylor

Past DC Scholars and their Internship sites

Elizabeth Rojo - Department of the Interior
Raul Gonzalez - Department of Homeland Security
Esmeralda Orozco - Office of Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Michael Guzman - U.S House of Representatives Democratic Caucus
Alyssa Ramirez - Epilepsy Foundation
For more information, visit

or e-mail dcinterns@fullerton.edu

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