Notes from the VP External

VP External: Mark Derdzinski


Hello, and welcome from the GSA external affairs team!

Our job is to advocate for the interests of UCSD graduate and professional students to numerous off-campus organizations. These include UC Office of the President, the Board of Regents, the UC Students Association, the National Association of Graduate and Professional Students (NAGPS), Student Advocates for Graduate Education (SAGE), and local and national elected officials.

In addition to advocating on behalf of graduate and professional students, the External team also works to get grads involved in the advocacy process through lobby visits, voter registration, and informative (and fun) events.

If you have any interest in student advocacy, don't hesitate to send any of us an email.

Who We Are

Mark Derdzinski, Vice President of External Affairs

Kimberly McCabe, Legislative Liaison (LL) for National Affairs

Vladimir Jovanovic, Legislative Liaison (LL) for State and Local Affairs

Lobby Corps

Where We Are Going

The Office of External Affairs will be hosting or attending a number of venues to advocate on behalf of graduate student interests.

  • Lobby visits to local representative offices, organized by your Legislative Liaisons. These visits are an important opportunity for graduate students to meet face-to-face with California‚Äôs politicians and policymakers on issues ranging from science funding to graduate student quality of life. Lobby Corp participation is open to all UCSD Graduate Students. If you are interested in learning more about our advocacy efforts, please contact the VP of External Affairs at, or the Legislative Liason for State and Local Affairs at When: Lobby Corp training sessions and visits are scheduled throughout the year.
  • Our external team will be visiting Washington D.C. to advocate on behalf of graduate students with the Student Advocates for Graduate Education (SAGE) and National Association for Graduate-Professional Students (NAGPS). In concert with other institutions around the nation, we speak to legislators on issues from research funding and student indebtedness to open access and international student issues. When: Fall 2016, Spring 2017.