The UNITY Reporting Fellowship was launched in 2014 with a grant from The Ford Foundation.
This is a rare opportunity for college students to develop immersive multimedia and reporting skills from all over the country. The fellowship is designed to simulate convergence journalism, technology and cross-cultural communications.
Each year, one UNITY fellow will be selected to cover the AAJA, NABJ, NAHJ, NAJA and NLGJA conventions, with travel and hotel accommodations provided.
The student fellow will participate in convention training that will include interactive online courses in interviewing, multimedia, ethics, and visual and audio techniques.
The student fellow will also be given convention assignments to cover issues related to the journalism industry as well as the AAPI, LGBTQ and the Native communities today.
A group of skilled journalists and media professionals will also be selected to act as mentors and guide the UNITY fellow as they report on the convention.
The Application Deadline of March 10, 2017, has passed.
What Former UNITY Fellows Are Saying
The UNITY fellowship was an incredible opportunity to attend and connect with every organization for journalists of color in one summer. I learned more about the industry, its future and job prospects in two months than in four years of schooling. The experience also helped me grow professionally and build a network of contacts and journalism friends around the country. I was able to connect with recruiters from major media outlets, and secure a job after completing the fellowship. I’m grateful for this experience, and grateful to belong to a community who believe in the diverse and innovation future of journalism.Charlie Kadado
If you are seriously considering going into the journalism industry, there is no better opportunity than UNITY’s Summer Fellowship. UNITY provided me with the most incredible opportunities, mentors, and friends that were all made within one summer.
As a wide-eyed college graduate, I wanted to have fun in my first summer out of college but I also wanted to make it worth-while. Looking back, the UNITY Fellowship was all that and more. Not only does the Fellow get to attend all the different minority-affiliate journalism conferences, everything is paid for by UNITY. From meals to airfare to conference admission fees, everything is covered so the Fellow needs to only do the duty of learning and gaining different experiences.
For me, each conference taught me different things. NAJA taught me a lot about the Native American culture and traditions. NABJ taught me about NABJ’s legacy in the journalism industry and how African Americans are portrayed by the media. AAJA taught me about Asian American journalists and personal branding. NLGJA taught me about how journalists should approach sensitive topics about the LGBTQ community. Overall, it not only made a well-rounded person, it also made me a stronger journalist.
Working with the student newsroom was a fabulous experience. Each conference brought in a different group of students so it was very interesting to have the opportunity to work with like-minded journalists. The mentors were equally amazing so much so that I still reach out to them now if I need any advice.
I am so grateful to have been picked for this wonderful opportunity. This is an once-in-a-lifetime experience because it’s tough to pay and attend all the different conferences. But UNITY makes it possible for young students to explore and understand their options. It’s a great way to learn about diversity and the journalism industry. Thank you, UNITY!Raji Ramanathan
Before arriving at the NAHJ Convention on behalf of UNITY, I was intrigued by the possibility of reporting in Latin America. I still am, but I realized that you don’t need to travel thousands of miles to write unique stories of international importance; many are right under your nose. During my week as a UNITY fellow, I received guidance on how to find and tell these underreported stories, many of which impact people of color. I’m indebted to UNITY for offering this professional and personal development. I consider UNITY’s mission a good litmus test for my own work, and I look forward to sharing it with colleagues and readers. I highly recommend journalists get involved with UNITY. We are stronger as one.Ben Bartenstein
The UNITY Fellowship program was a unique blend of intense networking, learning and storytelling.
The student newsrooms were full of the most passionate journalistsI had ever met. Mentors provided one-on-one career guidance and precision editing. Students published portfolio-worthy clips, including clips with alternative story formats, like maps and video.
I gained major industry insight. I expanded my journalism network. I even landed my first full-time reporting job because of my UNITY connections.
Most of all, I feel privileged to have spent time with different minority journalism groups. The people I met, the stories I heard – all of it reinforced the importance of having minority journalists in the industry.Melanie Balakit