Room 360, Third Floor Memorial Union
Phone: (530) 752-6914

The Office of External Affairs is a physical location on the third floor of the Memorial Union, housing three ASUCD units which deal with advocacy:

It was formerly the name of a consolidated unit that oversaw all ASUCD Advocacy operations, though it was unwieldy in ASUCD's flat organizational structure, and was disbanded. Details are below.


 The subject of this entry no longer exists in Davis or is a former version of something that came afterwards.All information here is for historical reference only.

The Office of External Affairs was a part of the ASUCD from 2004 to 2006. The OEA served to educate and advocate for undergraduate students on city, county, state and national issues. The OEA involved students in this advocacy through voter registration and education, grassroots organizing, lobbying elected officials, educational forums, and other out reach projects.

The unit was part of the ASUCD President's cabinet and worked with him on related special projects and issues. The OEA also worked with the University of California Student Association (UCSA) and the United States Student Association (USSA) on UC system wide, state, and federal legislative issues related to higher education.

In FY2006-2007 the office was broken up into three units; ASUCD Lobby Corps, ASUCD City/County Affairs Office, and ASUCD State and National Affairs Office (SNAO). However, the SNAO became the University Affairs Office in 2007 in reaction to an advocacy shift cause by ASUCD's pull out from UCSA. For more information, see the History section on this entry.

Offices within External Affairs



The ASUCD City/County Lobby evolved from the City Student Lobby. The City Student Lobby was established during the 1973-1974 academic year. This was in response to the need for effective student representation within the city of Davis and the county of Yolo. Students, as a distinct sector of the population, have special needs and interests which the City/County Lobby (now the City/Council Affairs Office) can meet. Because the quality of students' lives and education are affected by community decisions, students require a means of influencing the local decision-making process.

In 1993, due to the ruling by the California Supreme Court on Smith v. Regents, structural and programmatic changes were necessary for all of ASUCD's Lobby Units. The decision limited the use of mandatory student fees for advocating ideological or political causes outside the U.C. system. This ruling in effect required the cessation of all advocacy functions of this office, since the office was supported by mandatory ASUCD fees. Thus, the ASUCD City/County Lobby was renamed ASUCD City/County Affairs Office to reflect the instituted changes and the office's new role as a purely educational and outreach natured unit.

The need for a bridge between students and their local elected officials is fulfilled by the City/County Affairs Office. The Office analyzed the decisions and actions of the Davis City Council, the Yolo County Board of Supervisors, and the various commissions within the city and county. The Office researched community issues, and analyzed their potential impact on Davis students. The Office publicized pertinent information among the student population. Students educated in this way are better able to make informed decisions about the community issues which affect them. The Office then solicited student input to identify student positions, enabling the City/County Affairs Office to responsibly represent the student interest.

The Office dealt with housing issues as well as supplying apartment complex information. At one time, a specialized branch of the Housing Department in the City/County Lobby was Co-op Housing. Previously, the City/County Affairs Office sponsored the ASUCD Housing Day which is held annually in order to provide needed information to students and apartment managers.

The Office had a Community Relations Department which had two major functions: to act as Community City/County Liaison between city and the county organizations and to conduct Community Projects. The Lobby also had an Environmental Issues Coordinator. Next to Project Recycle, this is the only department which specifically dealt with environmental issues within ASUCD. This unit worked with EPPC to develop community wide environmental projects and influence environmental policy made locally.

As a distinct member of the ASUCD cabinet, the City/County Affairs Office served the students of Davis as an information source for the students within the Associated Students of the University of California at Davis.

In 1989, the ASUCD Executive Council created the ASUCD National Lobby in order to provide UCD Students with a voice on the federal government level. Similar to the ASUCD State Lobby, this advocacy unit deals with federal issues and advocates the viewpoint of UC Davis students to the US Congress, Department of Education, and other federal agencies dealing with higher education.

In 1993, again due to the ruling by the California Supreme Court on Smith v. Regents, structural and programmatic changes were necessary for all of ASUCD's Lobby units. The ASUCD National Lobby was renamed ASUCD National Affairs Office to reflect the instituted changes and the office's new role as a purely research, educational, and outreach natured unit. The ASUCD National Lobby and State Lobby coordinated extensively with both the UC Student Association and the United States Student Association to help secure the state and federal policy dreams students hold for higher education.

In spring of 2003, the ASUCD Lobby Corps was created to teach UCD undergraduates how to lobby and better represent the student body in state and local government. UCD alumni and administrators come as guest speakers to teach students how to support [then re-titled] ASUCD State and National Affairs Office as well as City/County Affairs Office at the city, state, and national level.

In 2004, the ASUCD Executive Office connected the three main advocative efforts of the association by creating the ASUCD Office of External Affairs. This new office incorporates advocacy in the city of Davis, the county of Yolo, the state of California, as well as in the Federal Government. Through research, analysis, and various lobbying tactics the External Affairs office will strive to represent UC Davis students and their concerns to the best of their abilities. A central role of the ASUCD Office of External Affairs will be to incorporate a broad base of UC Davis students not only in comprehension of these external issues, but also to empower students through lobby and direct action trainings and experience.

The ASUCD External Affairs Office is meant as a resource for UC Students and to act as that resource through the Executive Branch of ASUCD. The ASUCD Office of External Affairs is meant to be primarily directed by the Executive Branch and from APPROVED ASUCD Senate Resolution or Bills pertaining to external issues facing students at UC Davis.

In 2006, the Office of External Affairs was broken back up into its pre-2004 units, City/County Affairs and State and National Affairs as well as Lobby Corps branching off to become its own unit. The position of Director of External Affairs was moved into the Executive Office as a cabinet position. The following year, the Director of External Affairs was no longer needed.

Gossipy History

Legend tells us that the OEA was only created because Kalen Gallagher had promised both Liz Burrell and Brian McInnis the job of Director of State and National Affairs. The solution? Create a position for McInnis above SNAO Director, and make everyone happy. Not that it actually did.


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2008-09-30 07:30:00   Legend tells us? Is that how it happened? Interesting gossipy history... —EBurrell