Program Places Conservative Students in Jobs in California Politics

By Travis Dale

May 12, 2022

A new program by the Transparency Foundation is building a job pipeline for the next generation of California’s leaders, and their first graduating class has successfully joined the political workforce.

Conservative leaders and organizations often call for more youth involvement in politics, but what is actually being done to get this youth involved? A new program is aiming to do just this by laying the foundation of a job pipeline for conservative students.

The California Emerging Leaders Initiative is a new program, free to high school or college students, and is sponsored by the nonprofit Transparency Foundation. The program features evening seminars once a week on topics ranging from “What does it mean to be a Conservative?” to campaign management and activism. In addition, students are invited to social networking events and offered internships at local public policy organizations after they finish the course. 

The program is the brainchild of Carl DeMaio, a well-known conservative leader in California who also serves on the board of the Transparency Foundation.

DeMaio said the program has helped identify, recruit and train the next generation of conservative-minded leaders in California. 

“Our goal is to provide students a support structure where they can interact with like-minded peers and learn — and if they are interested we have paid jobs for them waiting once they complete the program,” said DeMaio.

Emerging Leaders completed its first graduating class last week, where students received awards and start dates for their internships. 

One student, Iliana, has already been placed in a job with non-profit organization working to promote Election Integrity in California by educating voters on how they can track their ballots and investigating reports of irregularities. 

“I’m thrilled to be working in one of the most talked about concerns on the minds of voters - which is how to improve the integrity of our electoral process,” said Iliana.

Another student, Sam, will be interning for Reform California - the largest conservative grassroots organization in the state.

“I’m going to be helping organize ballot harvesting events during the Primary election to make voting easy and I’ll also be tasked with running their online store,” said Sam. “I’m really excited about the online store because I’m interested in pursuing a career in e-commerce and business eventually,” he continued.

“This job pipeline is so needed for our students in California,” said Carl DeMaio. “It’s one thing to shout into space that you have an internship opportunity, but it’s a whole other thing to reach out to parents and students, build relationships, teach skills, mentor, and then connect them with an internship suited for them,” he continued.

“If we want these students to be truly involved in politics, it takes connecting with them personally and making the process fun and a good learning experience,” DeMaio explained.

The program will now be looking for its second class of interested students, and DeMaio anticipates that spots will fill up fast.

“We’ve been overwhelmed with the number of applicants and support for the program since it was announced in November of last year,” said DeMaio.

In addition to asking for members of the public to suggest worthy students apply for the program, DeMaio is asking for tax deductible contributions to help sponsor program spots for the students. 

Get More Information About the California Emerging Leaders Program HERE!

If you know a student that might be interested in applying for and benefitting from the program, they can sign up here.

STUDENT SIGN UP: Emerging Leaders Initiative Program

Photo Credit: Getty Images

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