Southern California Government-to-University Initiative


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About the Initiative

SCAG, in partnership with the Pardee RAND Graduate School, launched the Southern California Government-to-University (SoCal G2U) initiative in February 2020. It is one of five such initiatives around the country (the others are in Pittsburgh, Kansas, Chicago, and North Carolina) that are addressing critical governance challenges by building regional networks of governments and universities. Initiated by the non-profit Volcker Alliance, founded by former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, G2Us sustainably connect government’s hiring and research needs with local university capacity and is premised on the notion that bringing government and university leaders together is a powerful approach to strengthening government’s ability to deliver on its mission. At the core of the G2U Initiative is a growing group of vibrant, regional networks connecting local, state, and federal government leaders with key faculty and administrators from surrounding colleges and universities.

The SoCal G2U recently launched a project to address barriers to talent and diversity in public sector careers and supports SCAG’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and the steering committee includes member cities, as well as state, federal, and other local and university partners.

Project Objectives

  • Document challenges to attracting talented and diverse college and university students in public sector careers in the Los Angeles region.
  • Produce videos to support recruiting efforts.
  • Support the SoCal G2U team in formulating action plans to address challenges and messaging for future communication campaigns.

Additional Information

For more information, please refer to the Volcker Alliance website.


Debbie Dillon
Chief Strategy Officer
Tel: (213) 236-1870

Sandy Buchan
Executive Director of Career Services
Pardee RAND Graduate School
Tel: (310) 367-0204


Public Sector Career Exploration Series

In partnership with the Volcker Alliance, the SoCal G2U Initiative, is hosting a Public Sector Career Exploration Series for faculty, students, and alumni from higher education institutions located throughout the Greater Los Angeles Area.

These webinars are scheduled to be held on the second Wednesday of the month, beginning May 12, 2021 and running through November 10, 2021. They will take place from 9 – 11 am. 

The sessions will all be offered via Zoom and include representatives from local, state, and federal government.


SoCal G2U: Events

Addressing Barriers to Talent and Diversity in Southern California Region Public Sector Careers

You are invited to attend a webinar that will introduce the objectives and approach of a new research study. The study seeks to document the challenges to attracting talented and diverse college and university students into public sector careers in the Southern California region. Please note that registration is required in order to participate in the webinar.

Date: Thursday, March 25, 2021
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. (PDT)


This study, conducted by RAND and SCAG, has multiple parts including analysis of the literature regarding barriers, characterization of workforce data, and interviews and focus groups with students, career services professionals, and representatives of public sector agencies. The study is also preparing a series of short videos that will showcase diverse public sector employees who speak about their careers and pathways through the public sector. The study intends to make the videos publicly available to help increase awareness of the range and value of public sector careers in our region.

During the webinar, you will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide input to the study team.

When the study is completed (expected later in 2021), you will be invited to attend a webinar where the study team will present the findings. The study will also produce a report, which will be available online at no cost.