2016/2017 Knight Science Journalism Fellowship at MIT, USA ( $USD 70,000 Stipend)

Application Deadline: February 29, 2016, at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time

The Knight Science Journalism (KSJ) program, founded at MIT in 1982 with a generous endowment from the James S. and John L. Knight Foundation, has hosted more than outstanding 300 mid-career journalists, specializing in coverage of science, medicine, technology, and the environment, since its inception.

Every year, the Knight Science Journalism Program (KSJ) offers ten science journalists a 9-month fellowship — geared to the September-to-May academic year — designed to enable them to explore science, technology, and the craft of journalism in depth, concentrate on a specialty in science, and to learn at some of the top research universities in the world.

Each Fellow largely designs his or her own course of study, with consultation offered by the director and the KSJ staff. Fellows are required to audit at least one science course per semester but are other wise encouraged to explore the  wide range of offerings at  MIT, Harvard, or other institutions in Cambridge and Greater Boston.  The program is designed to offer a rich and varied mix of coursework, attendance at departmental colloquia, research trips, lab visits, interviews, reading, and writing.

Eligibility Requirements:

To be eligible for a Knight Fellowship, applicants must:

• Be full-time journalists, whether on staff or freelance. Part-time writers or producers are not eligible.
• Have at least three full years of experience covering science, technology, the environment, or medicine.
• Be reporters, writers, editors, producers, illustrators, filmmakers, or photojournalists. They may work for newspapers, magazines, television, radio, and digital media.

Benefits:

  • Fellows receive a $70,000 stipend, spend an academic year in Cambridge, Massachusetts, studying at both MIT and Harvard University, and enjoy a rich offering of science seminars, training workshops and field trips offered by KSJ.
  • Each Fellow largely designs his or her own course of study, with consultation offered by the director and the KSJ staff. Fellows are required to audit at least one science course per semester but are other wise encouraged to explore the  wide range of offerings at  MIT, Harvard, or other institutions in Cambridge and Greater Boston.
  •  The program is designed to offer a rich and varied mix of coursework, attendance at departmental colloquia, research trips, lab visits, interviews, reading, and writing.

Among the many Knight Fellowship programs and activities:

• Seminars: Fellows meet regularly for seminars with top researchers and media professionals.

• Field Trips: The program organizes several trips each year to locations of special interest to science and technology writers. Past destinations have included the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA, the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, ME, and the Harvard Forest in Petersham, MA.

• Digital Media Training: The number of storytelling channels open to journalists is multiplying, and we want our Fellows to return to the workforce with more technical skills than they had coming in. MIT offer workshops in various technologies, including video and audio capture, still photography, digital editing, animation, data journalism and podcasting.

• Workshops: Occasionally the program organizes special 1- or 2-day workshops on science, technology, and journalism issues. These have ranged from policy-based questions, such as a focus on food security, to basic science backgrounders, such as a series of lectures from leading nanotechnology researchers. The Knight Fellows gain automatic admission to these workshops.

Application Process:

Required Documents:

In the course of completing the online application form, you will be asked to submit several supporting documents. For each required document, you can either upload a PDF file, or type (or copy/paste) the document’s contents into the text area provided. File formats other than PDF are not accepted.

The following documents are required for 9-Month Fellowship applications:

  • Professional Autobiography: Provide a brief statement (1 page maximum) about why you want to participate in the Knight Science Journalism fellowship program and how it would fit with your professional goals.
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae: Be sure to include your education and work history. (Freelancers should include a list of freelance jobs in the last 12 months. Include each story, venue, and date of publication or broadcast.)
  • Undark proposal: Each semester, Knight fellows will be required to develop and produce, in consultation with the publication’s editor(s), an essay, feature story, multimedia package, or other contribution to the program’s forthcoming science magazine, UndarkDescribe one story or project you might like to pursue during your time in Cambridge. Information on the magazine’s format and editorial mission can be found here.
  • Work samples: Five work samples are required. Choose samples that best illustrate your interest and abilities. If work samples are not in English, a translation must also be submitted.
  • Recommendations: Three letters of recommendation are required. Letters should come from individuals familiar with your work and should comment on your abilities and your commitment to journalism.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the 2016/2017 Knight Science Journalism Fellowship 

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