J-students, apply for $1,500 newsroom fellowship for Summer 2019

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Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation
and Society of Professional Journalists, Virginia Pro Chapter

$1,500 FELLOWSHIPS SUPPORT
SUMMER 2019 NEWSROOM INTERNSHIPS

Two $1,500 cash fellowships that support summer journalism internships are available to rising sophomores, juniors or seniors at an accredited Virginia college or university.  The internships must be at least six weeks’ full-time work at a bona fide news organization approved by the Foundation board of trustees.

The responsibility of securing a summer internship rests entirely with the student. Applicants are not required to have an internship pre-arranged in order to apply. The Foundation may help students arrange an internship, but it cannot guarantee one can be found. Payment of the fellowship stipend to the student (or internship provider, if required) can be made in advance, upon formal confirmation of the internship by the host news organization and approval of the internship by the Foundation trustees. The stipend will be paid regardless of any salary offered by the host news organization, and it can be used for living and travel expenses or any other purpose related to the summer internship.

Applicants are not required to be journalism majors, but they must demonstrate intent to pursue a career in journalism (print, broadcast and/or online media). Both 2019 fellowship winners will be recognized at SPJ’s annual George Mason banquet, held annually to honor a Virginian who has supported freedom of the press and contributed significantly to journalism.

Applications are now being accepted and must be submitted postmarked by April 15, 2019. Here is the fellowship application form — a fillable PDF that can be saved and emailed to Brian Eckert, executive director of the Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation. In addition to the application form, applicants must submit:

  • A list of professional (not college- or university-sponsored) publication/broadcast of your work and print/broadcasting/online experience (paid or unpaid, including internships), if any.
  • Activities and memberships (college and other).
  • A personal biography (no more than two pages, double-spaced).
  • Explanation of why you believe you are suited for a journalism career, describing your short- and long-term career goals (no more than one page, double-spaced).
  • Your estimated summer living costs.
  • Three (maximum) samples of your original journalism work that have been published/broadcast anywhere, including college media. Please scan tear sheets and photocopies and submit as attached files. Broadcast samples should be submitted as attached files or links to an online source. Indicate date/place of each publication/broadcast.
  • Two letters of recommendation from professors and/or journalism professionals submitted directly to Brian Eckert, executive director, Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation, at eckertbh@gmail.com.
  • A resume.

Fellowships will be announced in early May 2019.

Internships must meet the following requirements:

  • Internship experience should include writing for publication/broadcast.
  • The internship must be offered by a bona fide news organization and last at least six weeks.
  • The internship must be approved by the Virginia SPJ/SDX Educational Foundation board of trustees before payment of the fellowship stipend will be made.

Additional information from Brian Eckert, executive director of the Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation:

The Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation offers two $1,500 cash fellowships in support of summer 2019 newsroom internships to current sophomores, juniors and seniors attending accredited Virginia colleges and universities. The internships must be at least six weeks’ full-time work focused on writing for publication or broadcast at a bona fide news organization approved by the foundation. Each $1,500 stipend can be used for any purposes related to the summer internship, such as living expenses, travel, supplies, career clothing and others.

Recognizing the importance of liberal arts education in preparation for a journalism career, applicants need not be journalism majors. They must, however, demonstrate clear intent to pursue a career in the profession (print, broadcast and/or online news media) as shown by their applications.

The 2019 fellowship winners will be recognized at SPJ Virginia Pro Chapter’s annual George Mason Banquet, traditionally held each year to honor a person who has made a significant and lasting contribution to Virginia journalism.

Students need not have an internship pre-arranged in order to apply. The responsibility of securing a summer internship rests entirely with the student. The foundation, upon request, may utilize its contacts throughout SPJ to help fellowship recipients find summer internship opportunities, but it cannot guarantee the availability of its assistance.

Payment of fellowship stipends is made upon formal confirmation of internship offers by host news organizations and their approval by the foundation board of trustees. Each stipend is paid regardless of any salary offered by the host news organization. The foundation will request evaluations of each fellow’s summer internship.

Applications are now being accepted. The application form and instructions are available online at www.spjva.com. The form and all supporting materials must be submitted online by April 15, 2019. Results will be announced May 1, 2019.

For more information, email Brian Eckert, executive director of the Virginia SPJ,SDX Educational Foundation (eckertbh@gmail.com).