Cal in Sacramento: A Summer with Governor Jerry Brown

-To apply for the Cal-in-Sacramento Fellowship, click here and download the application. The application deadline is Nov. 6 at 5pm. Question? Contact Camille Koué at ckoue [at] berkeley.edu.

I was very excited to spend two months during the summer of 2011 with the office of Governor Jerry Brown. I was placed in the press office where I was able to further expand the messaging and media skills I had developed over the past few years. My responsibilities included providing rapid media monitoring, coordinating press requests, and assisting in press event logistics.

Unlike Governor Schwarzenegger, Governor Brown preferred to keep a small and focused presence in the press; the vast majority of press requests for interviews and comments were declined. As a result, there were relatively few staffers in the press office. However, this was a great boon to the handful of interns in the press office because we were able to become very acquainted with some of Governor Brown's top staffers. The press office is located inside the Governor's private suite of offices known as "the Horseshoe," which meant that many of the top staffers as well as Governor Brown himself would stop by daily in the press office and chat. My favorite daily visitor would be Sutter Brown, the Governor's pet corgi, who had free reign of the Horseshoe and would wander around. Other highlights included weekly taco lunches provided by the press secretary for the entire press office and a private tour of the rotunda on top of the capitol building. My Cal-in-Sac experience was truly memorable and a great way to spend the summer before I started law school.

Alex Hirsch is currently a third-year law student at the UC Davis School of Law. Raised in the Sacramento area, he developed an early interest in California politics. Alex majored in political science at UC Berkeley, where he served as President of the Undergraduate Political Science Association and played trombone for four years in the Cal Band. After graduating from Berkeley in 2011, he went directly to law school. Alex is currently working at the Sacramento District Attorney's office and hopes to land a permanent position as a DA after he passes the bar exam.