California Education Policy Fellowship Program

The California Education Policy Fellowship Program (EPFP) is a professional development initiative that aims to strengthen education policymaking in California.

National EPFP

The California EPFP is part of an established national program sponsored by the Institute for Educational Leadership (IEL), a Washington, DC-based non-profit. The three curricular pillars of the national program are:

PolicyFellows learn about specific policy issues; policymaking and implementation processes; the interface of local, state, and national policies; and the practices effective leaders use to function in the policy environment.

LeadershipFellows develop familiarity with different types of leadership, explore their potential as leaders, and learn from interactions with proven leaders.

Networking. Fellows learn to establish mutually beneficial relationships with colleagues, expand their range of strategies for developing and using influence, and build a larger, more diverse range of professional resources and contacts.

California EPFP

California EPFP is jointly administered by the Education Insights Center and the Center for California Studies at Sacramento State to support the development of a new generation of skilled, informed education leaders who can develop and implement effective policy. The program brings together approximately 20 professionals over the course of an academic year to explore critical topics related to the national program’s three pillars: policy, leadership, and networking. California EPFP is tailored to address particular challenges in the state through its focus on 1) connecting K-12 and postsecondary education and 2) connecting state policy development and local implementation needs. These connections will be supported through the selection of Fellows, networking opportunities, the curriculum and speaker series, and the applied projects that Fellows complete.

California EPFP is supported by generous grants from The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and College Futures Foundation.

Chris Shearer, a program officer with The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, recently blogged about cross-boundary leadership, policy, his experience as an EPFP alumnus, and why Hewlett is investing in California EPFP:

“We’re advocating for identification and support of folks to learn within their own career path, encouraging networking them with one another and creating a vanguard of leaders on diversity and equity in deeper learning. I am convinced investing in people will help the state achieve a tipping point for better student outcomes. That’s why we invested in California EPFP.”

At a Glance

California EPFP 2017–18

Seminar 1: October 20-22, 2017, Asilomar, Pacific Grove
Speakers: Martha Kanter, Michael Kirst, Kent McGuire

Seminar 2: February 2-4, 2018, Kellogg West, Pomona
Speakers: Jorge Aguilar, Carl Cohn, Paul Danczyk, Jeff Gold, Katie Hern, Lynn Mahoney, Laura Metune

Washington Policy Seminar: March 18-21, 2018, Washington, DC

Seminar 3: June 1-3, 2018, Granlibakken, Tahoe

For more information:
Terra ThorneCalifornia EPFP Director

Applications for the 2018-19 cohort will be available here in spring 2018. If you're interested in receiving a note when the applications are available, please send an email to

Current Fellows