Ambassadors and Assembly member Cervantes

Credit: Courtesy of Mark Sebarrotin

From left to right, UC Riverside student ambassadors Ashley Ponce and Samuel Roberts, Assembly member Sabrina Cervantes and Mark Sebarrotin. Cervantes is a UC Riverside alumna whose district includes UC Riverside.

Become a UC student ambassador

Applications open September 23. Visit our Become a UCAN student ambassador page to learn more.

Students from across the University of California are a potent force in Sacramento and Washington D.C, helping shape policies that directly impact students.

Student ambassadors helped keep tuition flat for the 2019-20 school year, secured additional funding for financial aid and mental health services, and advanced protections for undocumented members of the UC community. Together, ambassadors create real change by being a strong, united force for UC students.

Join us! Apply now.

There is even more on the line this year – and we need more students to stand up, speak out and share their stories to get lawmakers to listen.

That’s where you come in. The UC Advocacy Network (UCAN), a vibrant community that works to build public and legislative support for UC and its students, is seeking new student ambassadors. Ambassadors work alongside the university to ensure that state and federal legislators prioritize funding and advance beneficial policies for UC and its students. They help students on campus stay informed and get involved in timely political issues that will affect their UC experience. This past year, ambassadors mobilized over 500 students to call, email and tweet at legislators to put UC first.

Are you a University of California student and want to advocate for UC, but don’t know how? Mark Sebarrotin (UC Riverside '19) shares how you can get involved by becoming a UC Advocacy Network (UCAN) student ambassador!
Credit: University of California

“As a first-generation, low-income college student, I thought my voice didn’t matter. I had a lot I wanted to say to our legislators, but I didn’t know how,” said recent UC Riverside graduate Mark Sebarrotin, who was a UCAN ambassador last year.

“Through UCAN, I learned how to be an effective advocate and I was able to speak directly to our legislators either on our campus or up in Sacramento,” he said. His participation in UCAN was so rewarding that Sebarrotin decided to join Coro’s public service fellowship program after he graduated.

The UCAN program is a great opportunity for students who want to influence state and federal policies on higher education, share the student point of view with lawmakers and develop resume-building experience in public affairs and political advocacy.

Anyone can apply

The program is open to undergraduate, graduate and professional students. Students must be able to devote 10 hours per month and be willing to engage in student outreach at their campus.

“We’re looking for students who are passionate about UC and excited to help build a strong, unified network of students who want to speak out in support of the university and its mission,” said Jennifer Brice, a 2018 UCLA alumna who is now the advocacy and communications manager in UC’s State Governmental Relations office in Sacramento.

Applications are due October 20 and the program runs from December 2019 through June 2020.

Selected ambassadors will join a fast-growing community of more than 20,000 people, including students, staff, faculty, alumni and other UC allies who are united in wanting to represent student and university interests to elected officials.

In addition to helping boost student participation in UCAN, student ambassadors learn about how UC is affected by state and federal legislative and budget processes. Student ambassadors will have opportunities to attend advocacy events on and near campus, connect with UC alumni and learn from experts across the UC system. Ambassadors who demonstrate a strong commitment to UCAN will travel to Sacramento to testify at state budget hearings to urge more state funding for UC, and meet with legislators and staff directly to share their UC story.

“This is a really exciting time to get involved,” Brice said. “Students can feel the pulse of politics on campus, especially when affordability and access to critical services are at stake. Students do not need prior political experience to be an ambassador — just a genuine interest in making a difference for their fellow students and UC.”