Tara Yarlagadda

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center (APAC)
Political Science and South Asian Studies

"My name is Tara Yarlagadda, and I am honored to be a recipient of the Fall 2013 Matsui Fellowship. I would like to give special thanks to the Matsui Center for its vital work to create a more democratically engaged nation and empower individuals to become involved in public service. I have been interested in the UCDC program since I attended an informational session during the first semester of my freshman year at Cal. I have had my heart set on being a part of the program ever since. As a Political Science and South Asian Studies double major, D.C. interests me for several reasons, not the least of which is the plethora of opportunities available to interact and network with knowledgeable professionals and similarly passionate individuals. I am excited to experience D.C. not merely as a tourist, but also as a resident by exploring its various nooks and crannies and understanding its unique culture as a melting pot of diverse peoples and visions. UCDC in particular offers such a well-structured program with much guidance and support from the staff directors, in addition to a variety of classes taught by renowned professors, that I could not pass up the opportunity to apply before I graduated from Berkeley."


Tara Yarlagadda, Matsui Washington Fellows
In the span of three days, I went from 25 degree F weather to 65 F, from craving hot chocolate in blistering D.C. cold to sipping my mother’s homemade smoothies produced with berries fresh from our humble orchard in sunny California. Talk about a jarring (yet welcome!) change of pace. This was my...