For all fellowships, qualified applicants must have a minimum of five years of experience and be currently working in some aspect of journalism for a news organization or as an independent journalist. We are looking for a diverse range of journalists including reporters, editors, data experts, visual journalists, audio producers, engagement specialists, designers, developers, entrepreneurs and organizational change agents.
If you are not a full-time journalist, the majority of your work should be in journalism. We do not consider full-time academics, public relations writers, internal trade writers, lobbyists, public advocates, or those seeking a degree.
Applicants for the Midwest News Fellowship should be senior leaders of journalism ventures or projects that have already been launched. The Midwest News Fellowship is not an incubator for ideas that are not yet off the ground.
Choosing the Right Application
U.S. applicants – If you are a U.S. citizen, apply as a U.S. applicant even if you work in another country or for a non – U.S. journalism entity.
International applicants – If you are a not a U.S. citizen, apply as an international applicant even if you work in the United States or for an American journalism entity. A Green Card is not the same as citizenship.
If you hold dual passports from the U.S. and another country, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with details of your citizenships and name of your news organization and we will answer your questions.
Midwest News applicants – This fellowship is designed for senior leadership of new journalism organizations and projects based in the Midwest: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Ohio and Wisconsin.
- December 1, 2019 International application deadline
- Mid-January, 2020 International Phase Two invitations extended
- Late-January, 2020 Interviews for international finalists
- February 1, 2020 U.S. application deadline; Midwest News application deadline
- February 7, 2020 U.S. reference letter deadline; Midwest News reference reference letter deadline
- Mid-March, 2020 U.S. applicant finalists notified; Midwest News finalists notified
- April 3 & 4, 2020 Interviews for U.S. applicant finalists
- To be determined Fellowship offers extended
All Fellows awarded our U.S. Fellowship and International Fellowship must agree not to work, either in their current job or other paid assignments, maintain residency in Ann Arbor for the duration of the fellowship and attend all program seminars and events. Applicants working in a newsroom are encouraged to obtain employer consent granting a leave of absence with the understanding that, upon completion of the fellowship and where applicable, the fellow will return to their place of employment.
Midwest News Fellows have the flexibility to remain connected to their organizations and maintain their news operations during the eight-month fellowship.
Great care goes into assembling classes of Fellows that represent diversity of race, ethnicity, nationality, experience, journalism specialty, geographic region and type and size of news organizations. Typically, 12 Americans are joined by six to eight international colleagues. Selection is determined by a committee of distinguished journalists and University of Michigan faculty. U.S. finalists for the our traditional fellowship are interviewed at Wallace House in April. International finalists are interviewed by phone or video conference in February. Fellowships are awarded in late April or early May.
We accept up to 20 Fellows each year. U.S. applicants may be considered for our coverage area fellowships but should not direct their study plans to fit one of the categories. If you are a U.S. applicant and your work or study plan aligns with one of our dedicated fellowships, the selection committee will take that alignment into consideration.
Fellowships for U.S. applicants:
- Burton R. Benjamin Fellowship: Broadcast Journalism
- Daniel B. Burke Fellowship : General Studies
- Ford Fellowship: Transportation, Technology, Environment
- Benny Friedman Fellowship: Sports Journalism
- Knight Specialty Fellowships: Education, Medicine, Information and Technology, News Innovation
- Karsten Prager Fellowship: International Reporting
- William C. Richardson Fellowship: Public Policy, Philanthropy
- Time-Warner Fellowship: Newsroom Diversity
- Mike Wallace Fellowship: Investigative Reporting
Applications for U.S. journalists (with U.S. passports) are due February 1, 2021.
Applications for international journalists (without U.S. passports) are due December 1, 2020.
Applications for the Midwest News Fellowship are due February 1, 2021.