Application Deadline: January 15th, 2023.
Every year, the Knight Science Journalism Program at MIT offers academic-year fellowships to 10 science journalists, to give them an opportunity to explore science, technology, and the craft of journalism; to 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, in consultation with the director and Knight Science Journalism Program staff. Fellows are required to audit at least one science course per semester but are otherwise encouraged to explore the wide range of offerings at MIT, Harvard, and other institutions in Cambridge and Greater Boston. The program is designed to offer a rich and varied mix of coursework, colloquia, research trips, lab visits, interviews, reading, and writing.
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. This includes work for newspapers, magazines, television, radio, and digital media.
Applicants must not have completed a fellowship of four months or longer during the two years prior to applying for the Knight Science Journalism Fellowship.
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. We offer workshops in various technologies, including mobile video, still photography, digital editing, data journalism, and podcasting.
- Fellows are required to reside full-time in the Boston/Cambridge area for the MIT academic year, from mid-August to late May.
- Fellows receive a $70,000 stipend, a $2,500 relocation allowance, and other benefits, including basic health insurance for each fellow and their family.
- Under the terms of MIT residency, fellows must refrain from paid professional work during the course of the 9-month program, unless written permission has been granted by the director.
The following documents are required for 9-Month Fellowship applications:
- Professional Autobiography: Describe, in 500 words or less, why you want to participate in the Knight Science Journalism Fellowship Program and how it fits with your professional goals.
- Résumé or Curriculum Vitae: Provide a brief overview of your education and work history. (Freelancers should include a list of freelance jobs completed in the past 12 months. Include each story, venue, and date of publication or broadcast.)
- Research Project Proposal: Describe, in 500 words or less, a project you intend to develop during the fellowship year. The goal is for fellows to create a Cambridge, Massachusetts based project, something that uniquely leverages their time and experiences at MIT, using the resources and connections available to them while they are here. Some element of the research project must be journalistic in nature, but it can expand beyond traditional parameters and be created in any format: long-form, story series, multimedia, video, audio, installation, etc. Fellows deliver formal presentations about their projects at the end of the academic year and are expected to successfully pitch a component for publication within the fellowship year or shortly thereafter.
- Work samples: Please provide five relevant work samples. Choose samples that best illustrate your interest and abilities. Please include a translation for any work not produced in English.
- Professional references: Please provide three letters of recommendation. Letters should come from individuals familiar with your work and should comment on your abilities and your commitment to journalism.
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