Photos by David Ng

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Civic U is a non-credit certificate program offered by the Pat Brown Institute in partnership with the the Office of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Cal State LA’s College of Professional and Global Education.

After the successful Civic U 1.0 for neighborhood councils in 2015, the City of Los Angeles asked the Pat Brown Institute to develop a graduate program in civic engagement. In February 2016, Civic U 2.0 was held at the new Cal State LA downtown campus at 801 South Grand Avenue.

Civic U 1.0 had covered the basics of Los Angeles government, and the tools with which community members could influence it. Civic U 2.0 mixed information, guest speakers, and workshop format through which the nearly 100 participants developed policy ideas and proposals.

The four three-hour sessions were attended by approximately 80 board members of Los Angeles neighborhood councils and 20 members of the Mayor’s Youth Advisory group. Sessions were facilitated by staff from the Pat Brown Institute, the Mayor’s Office, and the Center for Nonprofit Management. Each of the five working groups developed proposals aligned with the Mayor’s five policy priorities.

Civic U 2.0, under the direction of PBI’s Executive Director Raphael Sonenshein, featured as guest speakers Los Angeles Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Miguel Santana, Los Angeles City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, and Lilian Coral, the mayor’s interim chief data officer.

At the final session, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti made a surprise visit to encourage the graduating class to use their new skills to become more engaged in their prospective communities. The evening culminated with group presentations to Cal State LA President William Covino, CAO Miguel Santana, and L.A.’s Deputy Mayor and Chief of Staff Ana Guerrero. President Covino then presented certificates of graduation to all the participants.

 Watch our workgroups present their projects

Videos provided by the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment

“Mayor Eric Garcetti Closing Remarks”

“Ensure Our Communities Are The Safest In The Nation”

“Partner With Resident & Civic Groups To Build A Greater City”

“Make Los Angeles The Best Run City In America”

“Create a More Livable and Sustainable City”

“Promote Good Jobs For All Angelenos All Across LA”