CAUSE Leadership Academy
Since its inception in 1991, the CAUSE Leadership Academy (formerly called CASIC, California Asian American Student Internship Coalition) has prepared elite student leaders to be in the forefront of California’s legislative arena. This program is especially dedicated to developing the leadership skills of college students who are interested in exploring a career in public office, public service or community advocacy.
Previous students have been selected from Ivy League schools, the University of California system, community colleges and local high schools. Graduates of the program have gone on to run for elected office, work as legislative staff or work in the nonprofit sector. Students with an interest in Asian Pacific American (APA) affairs, leadership development, community service or politics are encouraged to apply.
This nine-week leadership academy will develop:
- Political awareness and civic engagement
- Understanding of the legislative process
- Insight on issues related to the APA community
- Professional and leadership qualities
- Public speaking and presentation skills
- Interview and social etiquette
- Organizational and cooperative working skills
As part of this intensive nine-week leadership academy, CAUSE interns will:
- Receive internship placement in the offices of elected officials.
- This opportunity affords interns a unique hands-on experience in the legislative process, policy knowledge and constituent outreach.
- Gain access to and insight from civic leaders through leadership workshops and seminars.
- Interns receive leadership training from elected officials and community leaders; meet and learn from assemblymembers and state senators in Sacramento, and get a firsthand, inside perspective of how the government functions.
- Participate in local APA community events.
- Interns act as liaisons between community and government, and gain a deeper understanding of the issues that affect their communities and the APA community.
The nine-week internship program consists of four components:
I. Internship Experience – Interns will be placed in a legislative office, a public agency office, or a city government office. In addition to internship experience, interns will gain a new perspective of government and public service. Interns will closely interact with staff as they represent the legislator at public events, conduct policy research, and write policy briefings. Overall, the internship experience allows interns to develop a stronger understanding of how government operates.
II. 2014 Annual Legislative Leadership Conference – The Annual Legislative Leadership Conference is a 2-day conference held in the state capitol, Sacramento. In its 23rd year, CAUSE holds close relationships with legislators, staff members, and lobbyists that provide the Conference participants with lessons from their legislative experience.
III. Weekly Issues Forum – Each week, interns will gather to hear an invited guest speak about the APA community, leadership development or current policy issues. The speakers consist of community leaders, elected officials, legislative staff, political consultants and more. Weekly meetings take place at the CAUSE office in Pasadena, CA.
IV. Public Affairs Mentorship Week – Interns will be given the unique opportunity to shadow an individual currently working in Public Affairs, a field that builds bridges and relationships between the public and private sector. This component of the internship allows interns to explore job opportunities in corporate and various other public service settings.
V. Group Research Project – Interns collaborate to work on a comprehensive group project that will be presented to the CAUSE Board of Directors, community members, media, and other distinguished guests. The project topic will be proposed by the interns and approved by the CAUSE Internship Coordinator and Advisor. The Coordinator and Advisor will assist the interns in carrying out their research, guiding them to sources and providing them with other necessary resources to complete their project. The group project presentation will occur at the CAUSE Graduation Ceremony at the conclusion of the program.
Applications for the 2014 Leadership Academy Internship are now open!
The CAUSE Leadership Academy Internship program is generously sponsored by:
Mr. Nelson Tan
Mr. Peter Woo
Thank you to Southwest Airlines, the exclusive and official airline of the CAUSE Leadership Academy, for their support of our program.
*This program is organized and supervised by the CASIC Coalition, organized and led by Center for Asian Americans United for Self Empowerment (CAUSE), and includes support from various organizations such as Chinese American Citizens Alliance and generous contributions from private and corporate sponsors.