Apply to the SAO

Apply to the SAO

Applications for Fall 2015 will be available at the beginning of the semester! Fill out our interest form here.

(1) What is the Student Advocate’s Office?

The Student Advocate’s Office (SAO) is an executive office of the ASUC. We offer advice and representation to any student or student group involved in a dispute with the University, effectively making us the campus public defender. We provide assistance for a broad variety of problems, including disciplinary allegations and violations, grade disputes, enrollment issues, financial aid problems, establishment of residency, discrimination, and harassment. All assistance is free and confidential.

(2) What does a caseworker do?

SAO caseworkers work with students on an individual, case-by-case basis, providing advice, support, and representation and helping students navigate the various administrative processes. Caseworkers also work with the University to improve policies and services.

After selection, caseworkers are assigned to one of four divisions: Financial Aid & Residency, Academic, Conduct, or Grievance. Caseworkers are then provided with training and casework practice with senior staff members. As soon as they feel comfortable, new caseworkers may begin to handle cases on their own.

Because our services are free to students, caseworker positions are unpaid.

(3) Why should I join the SAO?

SAO caseworkers gain invaluable experience applying their communication and critical analysis skills to real student cases, while helping students to resolve their conflicts with the University. In particular, caseworkers are able to develop strong relationships with various members of the University’s administration, while working in an office with some of the most interesting and talented students on campus.

(4) What is the time commitment?

All applicants must be free on Monday evenings at 7:30PM for our bimonthly office meetings.

Each caseworker is required to fulfill 5 office hours per week. Because casework sometimes involves work outside of the office, working in the SAO generally requires about 5-8 hours per week. Additionally, all members of the SAO must participate in occasional events to publicize the office’s services.

(5) How do I apply?

Applicants should possess strong analytical skills, a high level of motivation, and excellent communication skills. Our most important concern is that applicants will be committed to the work that we do. We encourage all majors and ages to apply.

The application for Fall 2015 is not yet available.

If you have any questions, feel free to stop by our office, or email us at recruit@berkeleysao.org.

We look forward to reading your application!