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Internships are among the best avenues for students to gain work experience, develop the skills necessary for success, and move smoothly through the college-to-career transition.

Below you will find information related to internship programs within and connected to the Department of Political Science that our students partake in throughout the academic year.

If you are interested in internships focused on law and politics, review the opportunitites posted here

Local Internship Research Program in Political Science

The Political Science Department invites talented students to participate in the Political Science Local Internship - Research Program, where you will receive advanced training in research methodologies and academic credit while working at a local internship. Dr. Peter Galderisi is the faculty adviser in charge of this program and is the Local Internship Director, and can be contacted at Please use the email subject: "Local Internship Research Program" when contacting Dr. Galderisi about the opportunity. 

Students will participate in a local (San Diego/Southern Orange County area) internship. Internships may be with local state legislative or congressional district offices, city or county offices (non-zonal or planning activities), or non-government agencies/interest groups (NGOs). A student may seek out his/her own internship opportunity or the Internship Director will attempt to find a suitable placement.


Applicants must have:
  • passed at least 90 units;
  • a 2.5 minimum cumulative GPA overall;
  • a GPA of 3.0 or higher in political science;
  • taken POLI 30; and
  • taken at least two upper-division political science courses.

How it Counts Toward the Political Science Major:

Participants will enroll in the Local Internship in Political Science, POLI 197SD and, in a subsequent quarter, may also enroll in the Local Internship Research Seminar, POLI 194SD, where you will write a research paper or complete an equivalent project under the direction of Professor Galderisi. The topic of the research seminar will be individualized for each student and coordinated among the internship granting office, the student, and the local internship director.

  • Research Seminar (POLI 194SD) will count as one upper-division elective for the major (taken for letter grade).
  • Internship (POLI 197SD) will not count towards the Political Science major (taken as Pass/No Pass) but may be counted as credits towards graduation. Please check with your College to inquire how the internship units will apply to your overall graduation requirements.

How to Apply:

[1] Speak with Dr. Galderisi about your internship to verify that it is acceptable for POLI 197SD.
[2] Complete the Local Internship Research Program Form.
[3] Prepare a cover letter and resume
[4] E-mail the cover letter and resume to: 

Types of Internships include:
Local congressional and state legislative field offices; local governments, including mayoral, city council, and county commission offices; and interest groups and other NGOs (non-governmental organizations), locally based.

Examples of recent internships:

- U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein's district office
- U.S. House Representative Duncan Hunter's district office
- U.S. House Representative Scott Peters' district office
- California State Senator Joel Anderson's office
- Sarah Boot for City Council Campaign
- Allen Theweny for El Cajon Mayoral campaign
- San Diego County Taxpayers' Association
- United Nations Association of San Diego
- United States Attorney's Office--Southern California District
- San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce

UCDC Program

The UCDC Program is an academic internship program providing UCSD students with the opportunity to intern for a quarter in Washington D.C. while enrolling in UC courses and living in the UC Washington Center. Students who participate in the UCDC program must enroll in the Internship Seminar, POLI 197I, and a Research Seminar. Students may also enroll in an elective if they wish. Political Science majors or minors who participate in the UCDC program earn credit for the major or minor with the Research Seminar, POLI 194. The Internship Seminar, POLI 197I, does not fulfill major or minor requirements. A UCDC elective may fulfill Political Science major or minor requirements, depending on which electives are being offered in a particular quarter.

UC Center Sacramento Program

The UC Center Sacramento Program is an opportunity for students, especially those interested in public policy or journalism, to intern for a quarter in Sacramento while enrolling in specific courses through UC Davis. Students who participate in the UC Center Sacremento program enroll in the Political Science Internship (POLI 192A), Internship and Research course (POLI 193), The California Policy Seminar (POLI 195), and Research Design & Methods (POLI 196E).  Political Science majors or minors who participate in the UC Center Sacramento program can earn credit for the major or minor with The California Policy Seminar (POLI 195), and Research Design & Methods (POLI 196E). For more information related to coursework, please visit the Program's website here.