This summer, for 14 consecutive years, six driven and passionate students joined the 2023 Equality California-Comcast Fellowship Cohort. The program, which is now back in person after the pandemic, will take place between June 20 and July 21 of 2023.
The Equality California Institute-Comcast Legislative Fellowship is an educational opportunity for six hand-chosen students, who have completed at least their first year of undergraduate studies, to participate in a four-week in-person change-making program. The goal of this Fellowship is to provide students with hands-on experiences discussing legislative decisions regarding the equality and inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community. The voices of these students will help push a greater importance on representation within the government to ensure there is a place for everyone regarding policymaking.
Based in the heart of California, this program takes place in Sacramento’s Capitol, with all six students being placed in the legislative office and assigned mentors to overlook the fellows’ work. With their short but immersive four-weeks in office, the fellows will be presented with numerous opportunities to engage with leading state policymakers and learn about the moving parts within California’s government.
Allow us to introduce the 2023 cohort of Equality California-Comcast Fellows
Kevin Bautista, from Los Angeles, is a University of California, Berkeley student pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in Human Rights Interdisciplinary. As an aspiring professional in the Public Policy sector, he is passionate about working toward the betterment of the state of California. Through this placement in a Sacramento legislative office, he looks forward to the privilege of serving as an intern in an in-person role and witnessing firsthand the state legislative and budget process. Kevin will be working with Assemblymember Lowenthal.
Joshua Downey is majoring in Business Administration at Sacramento City College. He is a newly elected member of the State of California Department of Cannabis Control’s Disabilities Advisory Committee (DAC), which aims to create a diverse, equitable, inclusive, and accessible workplace for all. The knowledge gained through this fellowship program will be an exceptional supplement to his education and professional career, moving forward to someday work in government/politics and offer representation for the under-represented. Joshua will be working with Assemblymember Ward.
Ethan Gay, from Orange County, recently graduated with distinction from Duke University under the Program in Literature after successfully defending his honors thesis, “Qué es un hombre? The Reproduction and Regeneration of Latinx Masculinity,” an exploration of the ways in which Latinx subjects reckon with masculinity and the ways that art is able to articulate and mold it in new ways. With previous experience working with Assemblymember Cottie Petrie-Norris and Congressman Mike Levin, Ethan hopes to use the Equality California’s Comcast Legislative Fellowship to further advance his understanding of California policymaking and advocate for the interests of Queer- and Latinx-identifying communities across the state. Ethan will be working with Assemblymember Arambula.
Harjot Kaur, from Yuba City, recently finished her second year of college at UC Santa Cruz, but plans on transferring to UC Davis to finish up her degree in Political Science with a minor in Education. In 2022 she ran her first election campaign and was elected to the Yuba City Unified School District Board. She is currently the youngest elected official in Sutter County at the age of 19. Harjot will be working with Senator Laird.
Annie Koruga (they/them) is majoring in Political Science at UC Berkeley. They serve as Chair of the California Young Democrats Progressive Caucus, and Recording Secretary of the Alameda County Democratic Party (ACDP). Additionally, Annie served as a Senator of Social Sciences in student Government at Ohlone College, as well as their Region’s Legislative Affairs Director in the Student Senate for California Community Colleges, a statewide body. At their institution, Annie was proud to be the student representative on both the Curriculum Committee and Faculty Senate, collaborating to stand-up a Queer Studies Certificate Program and build processes to screen for equity when approving new curriculum. Annie will be working with Senator Eggman.
Annika Olsen, from San Diego, is a Junior at Sacramento State University studying both Political Science and History and is also the Chair of Endorsements for the Sacramento Chapter of the National Women’s Political Caucus. Annika has always had a passion for law, government, and social justice. Growing up as a queer woman in San Diego, she had an early introduction to politics and its effects on people’s lives. As she hopes to attend law school and continues to pursue a career in public service, she emphasizes integrity, passion, and kindness across her pursuits. Annika will be working with Assemblymember Low.
Comcast would like to extend a big round of applause for the 2023 Fellows; we are excited to see what good they bring the world!
To learn more about the Equality California Comcast Fellowship program visit: https://www.eqca.org/comcast-fellowship/