Over the past academic year, I have worked as a member of the Legislative Affairs Committee (LAC); a GSA committee that works to track federal and state policy that may impact UC students as it is proposed and progresses through the legislature. The reviews that the committee performs eventually help inform the positions of the UC Graduate and Professional Council who’s members advocate for graduate and professional students to the UC Regents and in state and federal legislatures.
My focus as part of the committee was to improve the efficiency of the review and tracking of State legislative items. After learning how legislative tracking is done within the committee I identified monotonous tasks like navigating the California legislative website, searching for keywords, and summarizing bills and built a program to automate these tasks, which is freely available for anyone to use.
Through my experience with the LAC, I became more familiar with GSA processes and its membership, and I am now looking for a way to represent more directly the interests of our graduate group using what I have learned. While the commitment to the position is only monthly; I hope to look for creative and alternative ways to improve aspects of the position as I did in the LAC, and provide active, high-quality representation of our graduate group at the GSA.