Mario Lopez

Participated in: Winter 2006

Major: Political Science & Education

Internship Organization: Senator Diane Feinstein

Current Position: Recent Graduate of UC Hastings Colleges of Law

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mario-ernesto-lopez-7123a558

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Samson Makonnen

Why did you decide to participate in the Washington Program?

When I was in the 8th grade, I was unable to attend the 8th Grade field trip to Washington because I could not afford it. My parents are the hardest working individuals you'll ever meet, but they just couldn't afford to pay for the trip. Well, years later when I transferred to UC Davis, I found out about the Washington Program, and it was a dream come true! I love current events, especially what happens on Capitol Hill. In addition to accepting me to the UCDC program for Fall 2007, Davis gave me a $1000 scholarship to help pay for expenses.

Not only did I finally get to visit DC, but I had the opportunity to live and go to school in DC! When I was in the fourth grade, I would help my mom, father, and grandmother study for their citizenship test. One of the questions that was asked, "Who are your two US Senators?" Well, they would always proudly respond, "Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein." I would have never imagined in my wildest dreams that just nine years later I would be interning in Senator Feinstein's Washington Office, let alone in the United States Senate. It was a dream come true, and something that has helped me throughout my career.

How have your career goals evolved since your participation in the Washington Program?

After graduating from Davis in 2007, I worked for 5 years in financial services, and began law school at Hastings this past academic year. I graduated from law school at UC Hastings in May. This past fall semester, I had the opportunity to return back to UCDC Law Program, interning at the White House in the National Economic Council.