Panetta Congressional Internship


Panetta Congressional Internship

Each fall semester, the Panetta Institute for Public Policy, located in Monterey, provides select CSU students with an intensive two-week training course on the workings of the U.S. Congress, then sends them to Washington, DC, all expenses paid, for 11 weeks to serve for a California member in the House of Representatives. In Washington, interns will attend special seminars with government leaders, journalists, and policy experts. Students majoring in any subject are eligible to apply. The internship covers all expenses, including air travel, and food and lodging while in Monterey and in Washington, DC. Each intern also will receive a stipend to help cover other expenses. Interns may earn up to 20 semester credits through CSU Monterey for a semester.

                                                                                               EMAIL ME ABOUT THIS PROGRAM!

Tigran Agdaian - SF State's 2017 Panetta Congressional Intern for U.S. Representative John Gramendi (D-CA 3rd District)


Tigran Agdaian is a junior pursuing a major in Environmental Studies and a minor in Urban Studies and Planning. Mr. Agdaian was raised in Thousand Oaks, CA by immigrant parents from Armenia who instilled in him the importance of perseverance and dedication to achieving his goals. His initial interest and exposure to politics began at a young age while canvassing for local candidates in Los Angeles County with his father, a twenty-year employee of the Service Employees International Union. Interacting with constituents during precinct walks, marches, and in picket lines allowed Mr. Agdaian to experience the importance of political activism first-hand and, he now seeks to learn more

Mr. Agdaian has continued to pursue his interest in politics at SF State and plans to apply to law school following the completion of his Bachelors of Science degree in 2018. He is in excellent academic standing having been on the Dean's List of Honors for four semesters since beginning his education at SF State. Currently, Mr. Agdaian is an intern for the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) District 8 office. During his tenure there, he has participated in research on multiple projects including the future of BART development as well as an introduction of a "Sanctuary in Transit" policy. Through the Panetta Institute, Mr. Agdaian plans to gain knowledge regarding the principals of policymaking and the effects of journalism on politics.  Additionally, he is looking forward to interacting with government leaders, learning from their expertise, and contributing his efforts to begin making a positive impact on a national level.

Panetta Congressional Interns - Past and Present

Application Information (Due: Wednesday, February 14th, 2018)

Apply Here!

Each Fall semester, the Panetta Institute for Public Policy provides select CSU students:

  • Two-week training courses on the working for the U.S. Congress, then sends them to Washington, D.C.
  • All expenses paid – 11 weeks/college units
  • Attendance during special seminars with government leaders, journalists, and policy experts.

Student Eligibility:

  • Students majoring in any subject are eligible to apply
  • U.S. citizen and State of California resident
  • Upper division undergraduate: Junior or Senior status during internship (120 units maximum)
  • Superior academic achievement (3.3+ GPA)
  • Demonstrated commitment to community and public service and leadership
  • Excellent English oral and written skills to interact with constituents appropriately
  • Willing to live in assigned group housing during the entire 11 week program
  • Never been disciplined under the CA Code of Regulations, Title 5, Article 2, Sec. 41301
  • Proof of health insurance that is compliant with the Affordable Care Act and covers the students while residing and working in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area
  • Willing to undergo a background check


  • Willingness to accept entry level work and take on assigned tasks as team player
  • Provide tours of Capitol Building
  • Draft correspondence, attend hearins, take notes and provide reports
  • Conduct issue/legislative research

Expectations if Selected:


Be willing to live in assigned group housing with other interns during the entire program:

  • Work full-time in a Congressional Office. See Congressional Internship Job Description.
  • Accept entry level work assigned to unpaid assistants (interns):
  • Take on assigned tasks and work hard:
  • Attend reqiried seminars in Washington, D.C. (arranged by the Panetta Institute):
  • Submit a brief weekly report to the Panetta Institute:
  • Maintain a journal: and
  • Write a twenty-page research paper

SF State (ICCE)

  • Document internship experience while in Washington on the SF State ePortfolio
  • Help recruit the next Panetta intern by making presentations in classrooms
  • Conduct two info sessions, one each semester (in collaboration with ICCE)
  • Participate in the Panetta selection committee to select the next intern
  • Document final research project with the ICCE archives

Students must be able to participate fully in this Congressional Internship Program and not be involved in any other employment or pursuit of employment. Further, no additional course enrollment is allowed outside of the Congressional Internship Program. That includes preparing for or scheduling of LSAT, MCAT, ORE, or other graduate school exams or preparing for other tests. And, finally, students will not be excused for family or other reasons unless there is an emergency or extenuating circumstance.

Spring 2018 Panetta Timeline:


For more information on how to apply to this program, please contact Jose R. Lopez at

Archives: Panetta Interns Policy Papers

Panetta Congressional Interns: 2008-2016

2016 Panetta Congressional Intern - Gabriel Escobedo, History and Political Science

2015 Panetta Congressional Intern – Kayla Tolentino, Health Education

2014: Caoimhe McOsker

Major: Social Work

Interned with Rep. Juan Vargas (D)

2013: Margaux Curcuru

Major: Philosophy & Law

Interned with Rep. Judy Chu (D)

2012: Aerris Hoskins

Major: Political Science

Interned with Rep. Pete Stark (D)

2011: Ashley McDougald

Major: Political Science

Interned with Rep. Barbara Lee (D)

2010: Erica Maybaum

Major: Master of Social Work

Interned with Rep.Jackie Speier (D)

2009: Marc Joseph Wirtz

Major: Business

Interned with Rep. Dan Lungren (R)

2008: Jennifer McCrea-Steele

Major: Communication Studies

Interned with Rep. Jackie Speier (D)