Law + Government

Serve the Public Good

icon of justice scales for careers in law + government

Are you driven to improve your community? You’re not alone.

The numbers don’t lie when it comes to the amount of people who work in areas of Law + Government. Over 22 million people, or 16.7% of the U.S. workforce, work in federal, state, and local governments, over 1.3 million lawyers practice within the United States, and close to 300,000 individuals work as paralegals or legal assistants. 

With so many people working together to build society at its core, opportunities are prime for Gauchos looking to make a difference. Careers in Law + Government share some similarities and a few key differences--learn how you can join the movement of public servants and prepare yourself for a successful future.



Recent Postings

Click to view opportunities related to Law + Government in Handshake. Customize your filters and learn how to search for UCSB career success!

Line icon

Gain Experience: Department of State

For complete information on internships, student jobs, research opportunities, extracurriculars, and more, review our starter tips to Gain Experience in all careers as well as the specialized tips on this page.


After narrowing down the area(s) of the Department of State that align most with your career goals, you are ready to gain relevant experience. The Department of State focuses on 13 Dimensions for Foreign Service Officers and 12 Dimensions for Foreign Service Specialists to gain skills in, which are transferable to all roles in the Department of State. We recommend that you use this as a benchmark to guide your process.


Types of Experience

There are a number of different ways that you can begin building experience at UCSB for roles in the Department of State. Click below for initial suggestions to get started.

Participating in campus organizations, such as Model UN, Global Awareness ClubFloating Doctors at UCSB, and cultural student organizations, allows you to be around like-minded people, share experiences, and learn more about international career paths. You can learn more about the value of campus organizations on our Extracurriculars page.

Additionally, UCSB hosts programs and centers that can directly connect you with opportunities to grow your skill set. For example, the Blum Center provides research, workshops, and events that can enhance your knowledge and experience around global poverty and sustainable development. The Education Abroad Program (EAP) also offers opportunities to study abroad and grow skills in foreign language, adaptability, and understanding of diverse cultures and governments.

If you are seeking an internship, the Department of State offers multiple programs. Be sure to pay close attention to deadlines, as many federal internships hire one year in advance to account for the time it takes to complete a background check in security clearance.

Here is a list of internship programs from the Department of State:

  • Pathways Programs: Paid internships in Civil Service located in the United States, providing two different ways for United States citizens to explore federal careers.
  • Student Internship Program: Unpaid internships to experience the field of Foreign Service in Washington, D.C. or abroad.
  • Virtual Student Federal Service (VSFS): Largest virtual internship in the world, providing the opportunity to choose an unpaid project to work on remotely for nine months.
  • Other Student Programs: Available to work in Washington, D.C. or abroad.

Learn More

Review the American Foreign Service Association (AFSA) for more internships inside and outside of the Department of State.

Roles in the Department of State benefit from a background in politics or government. To help you gain experience in these areas and build your network in federal government, consider participating in UCDC or UCCS.

Envelope icon  Want Emails on This Career Path?

Subscribe to Your Future in 3 Easy Steps


Do you want to receive success tips, jobs and internships, and events for these interests? Go to your Career Interests in Handshake and check the box for Career Path emails on Law + Government!

Login to Handshake to subscribe now, or see how to Update Your Career Interests >>

View Email Archive

Login to Handshake, Go to Career Interests, Save Your Selections