mccarthy center students standing together at washington dc

2022-23 Annual Impact Report

Over the past year, we’ve embraced innovation with programs like our Equity Interns, Engage San Francisco Literacy, and our local, state, and national fellows programs as a commitment to pushing boundaries and exploring new frontiers in public service. This spring, we successfully created the inaugural McCarthy Center Friendraiser Celebration, lifting our community partners and laying the foundation for a brighter, more inclusive future.

None of our achievements would be possible without the unwavering support of our partners, collaborators, local public leaders, and co-educators. We express our heartfelt gratitude to each who has joined hands with us in collectively making a difference in the lives we touch.

Our journey doesn't end here; it's a continuous evolution, and the best is yet to come. Thank you for being an integral part of our journey, and let’s keep crushing it!

derick brown
Derick Brown

Senior Director, Leo T. McCarthy Center


Leadership and Professional Development Workshops/Sessions

McCarthy Fellows

Our McCarthy Fellows programs in San Francisco, Sacramento, and Washington, D.C., offered opportunities for undergraduates to explore the intersection of justice, politics, and public policy at city, state, and national levels through community-engaged learning courses and internships.

We revamped our outreach efforts, making 175 classroom visits, delivering 86 student organization pitches, and collaborating with campus departments to ensure program accessibility and relevance to undergraduates. This led to an increase in applicants across majors such as politics, international studies, civil engineering, environmental studies, and business administration, with a 50.7 percent increase in applications compared with the previous year.

McCarthy Fellow in San Francisco Placements

  • District 10 Supervisor Shamann Walton
  • San Francisco Public Library, Racial Equity Office
  • SF Environment—Urban Forestry
  • Office of the Assessor Recorder
  • District 3 Supervisor Aaron Peskin
  • Office of the City Administrator
  • District 8 Supervisor Rafael Mandelman
  • District 5 Supervisor Dean Preston
  • San Francisco Recreation and Parks, Requity Program
  • SF Environment—Communications and Public Affairs
  • San Francisco Planning
  • Public Defender’s Office
  • San Francisco Human Rights Commission
  • Department of Early Childhood Education
36 Fellows

in Washington, D.C., Sacramento, and San Francisco


This year’s student campus team held 46 election pop-ups and collaborated with the SF Department of Elections for National Voter Registration Day and National Voter Education Week, ensuring community readiness for the 2022 midterms.

Our partnership with the School of Law fostered a student dialogue on the 26th Amendment’s significance for Constitution Day. Prior to the election, we implemented the Youth Poll Worker Project, partnering with Power to the Polls, enlisting a new generation of poll workers, including students from Raoul Wallenberg High School, to safeguard the election process.

The National Study on Learning, Voting and Engagement data guided our outreach and recruitment efforts, which were shared via our Making It Political podcast. These endeavors earned us recognition with an All-In Voter Friendly Campus Award and a spot on the 2022 Washington Monthly Student Voting Honor Roll, celebrating institutions.


Election Pop-ups

Equity Interns

Now in its third year, the Equity Interns program — a partnership among the University of Delaware’s Biden Institute, the University of San Francisco’s Leo T. McCarthy Center, and the YMCA of San Francisco — brought together 14 students to participate in an eight-week paid internship supporting the YMCA of San Francisco’s Power Scholars Academy’s K–8 youth to eliminate summer learning loss and pandemic-related slide in math, literacy, and overall social-emotional development at three neighborhood elementary schools: John Muir Elementary School, KIPP Bayview Academy, and Monroe Elementary School.


K-8 Students Served

Engage San Francisco

In the ninth year of this campus community partnership, Engage San Francisco has maintained its goal of guiding the university students, faculty, and collaborators in achieving community-identified outcomes through collective partnerships and programming that support children, youth, and families in The Fillmore/Western Addition neighborhood.

  • Lighting the Path—Letters from Black Men to Young Black Men and Boys, a vision from Thomas Simspon of Afrosolo, is being made a reality through a collaboration with fellow community leaders, faculty, staff, and students in USF’s Marshall Reilly Living Learning Community with the goal of being published in 2024.

  • This initiative offered by the School of Education’s Dr. Colette Cann and her co-educators from RISE for Racial Justice, is designed to prepare, support, and empower community activists to conduct research that addresses anti-Black racism. Last year, 30 new participants learned the significance of community storytelling, documenting their discoveries through data collection methods and interviews.

  • The Changemakers book and website, researched and written by the Martin-Baro Scholars and Esther Madriz Diversity Scholars from 2015–2019, documents the legacy of African American heroes who are part of San Francisco history. In the fall, Engage San Francisco partnered with San Francisco Public Library in celebrating and making hardbound copies available at each SFPL branch.

ESF Literacy

Engage San Francisco Literacy develops literacy informed, anti-racist, and equity-minded student tutors to grades K–5 children in five public elementary schools and community-based afterschool programs.

An ongoing ESF Literacy research project continues to gather data on the web of influences impacting literacy to create a counter-story compiled of the experiences of Black children in the Western Addition. This research uplifts the knowledge and work of community partners so that their critical perspective informs the work of our program and increases our collective impact on the learning of Western Addition children.


Literacy Tutors


Hours Tutored per Week


K-5 Students Reached

Community Empowerment Activists

The Community Empowerment Activists (CEA) is a yearlong community-engaged learning (CEL) program where students build, learn, grow, and contribute to grassroots organizing and advocacy building efforts through paid internships with frontline organizations in San Francisco. CEA is in its fifth year since its inception in August 2019 and has welcomed over 30 co-educators who are prominent local, national, and international community leaders, activists, artists, and educators.

Community-Engaged Learning

In 2022–23, we celebrated two decades of offering the Community Partner Co-Educator fellowship (CPCE), which brings together staff from local nonprofits, government agencies, and grassroots organizations to learn about CEL, exchange professional knowledge, and build relationships to enhance their work and support community-engaged learning.

Faculty developed and enhanced community-engaged courses to build students' capacities as civic participants and changemakers. Additionally, we convened USF's Council on Community Engagement to provide critical insights informing USF's enactment of the new strategic plan and meet with the provost to share successes and challenges in our community-engaged work.


Community-Engaged Learning Courses


Community Partner Co-educator Organizations


Students in Community-Engaged Learning Courses

2022-23 Financials


68% Gifts, Grants, and Contributions

14% Foundations

18% Endowment


85% McCarthy Center Programs

11% Administration

4% Other Restricted Activity

2022-23 Report (Full Edition)

View the full edition of the Leo T. McCarthy Center for Public Service and the Common Good 2022-23 Annual Impact Report.