Washington Center

Robert T. Matsui - UC Fellowship

About the Robert T. Matsui - University of California Fellowship Program

The Robert T. Matsui-U.C. Congressional Fellowships have been the Robert T. Matsui Foundation's flagship program since 2007. The fellowships are awarded on a competitive basis to undergraduate students in the University of California Washington Program engaged in term-time congressional internships. The program aims to support this public service internship by providing financial support, placement assistance, and special programming for each class of Fellows:

Financial Support

The Fellowship carries a significant stipend to defray the costs of a term in Washington.  Students in a semester program will receive a $2,000 stipend; students in a quarter program will receive a $1,500 stipend.

Placement Assistance

Students named as fellows will be required to participate in a telephone placement consultation shortly after awards are made. While students will remain free to apply for and commit to an internship in any congressional office, the University of California will provide enhanced placement counseling to ensure that every Fellow receives a strong placement opportunity.  Matsui-U.C. Fellows will also receive a letter of introduction for submission with internship applications.

Special Programming

Matsui-U.C. Fellows will be invited to an award ceremony on Capitol Hill with California Members of Congress and the staff members of Fellows’ host offices.  Fellows may also have the opportunity to participate in one or more special events, which in the past have included the opportunity to meet President Bill Clinton and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.


Recipients of the Fellowship receive the title of Robert T. Matsui-University of California Congressional Fellow in recognition of the commitment they undertake to explore public service while at the U.C. Washington Center.

Reflections From Our Alumni

Honor and Opportunity

The Robert T. Matsui—UC Congressional Fellowship gave me the opportunity to meet former President Clinton, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Congresswoman Matsui along with networking with other people. It also allowed me to use the scholarship to further my education. The Fellowship gave me the honor to become part of a network of people who motivate themselves and other members of society to be civically engaged. I am proud to say that as the first RTM congressional Fellow, many doors have opened for me and I am grateful for everything.”

--Joanna Perez, UCLA ’08, Fall 2007 Fellow, Office of Senator Dianne Feinstein

Public Service as a Future Career Path

"The Robert Matsui fellowship provided me the opportunity to explore public service as a future career path. It gave me the support and training I needed to get the most out of my internship and prepared me with the tools to seek employment upon completion. It was a privilege to be a Robert T. Matsui—UC Congressional Fellow because the Matsui family is genuine in their work to motivate and prepare students to become the future public servants of America.”

--Guillermina Garcia, UCB ’08, Fall 2008 Fellow, Office of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs

A Sense of Belonging to the World of Politics

“I have loved every moment of living and working in Washington, DC. The Fellowship was wonderful in helping me build connections and friendships. The UCDC program and the Matsui Foundation have been great resources and have mentored me in the best direction to supplement my internship at Senator Feinstein's Office. I will take away a sense of belonging to the world of politics and public service. I now how a clearer sense of my future career path, and I hope to come back to Washington and work for Congress.”

--Mohammad Naim, UCLA ’09, Winter 2009 Fellow, Office of Senator Dianne Feinstein

A New Perspective on Progress

“My quarter at UCDC and specifically as a Matsui Fellow was something that altered my undergraduate experience. The Matsui Fellowship gave me the support and resources necessary to excel in my internship and make the most of my three months in Washington DC. Because of my experience as a Matsui Fellow, I am now committed to a career in public service."

--Janou Gordon, UCLA, Fall 2009 Fellow, Office of Congressman Henry Waxman

Questions? Contact matsuifellowship@ucdc.edu or (202) 974-6345.