Application and Fellowship FAQs

Below are frequently asked questions about applying for our Knight-Wallace Fellowship.

What Covid-19 health and safety measures will be in place during the in-person fellowship?

After two years of remote fellowships, we are excited to return to our in-person Knight-Wallace Fellowship and will adhere to the University of Michigan’s Covid-19 protocol put in place for all students, staff and faculty. This currently includes Covid-19 vaccine and booster requirements and a mask policy following the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Do I have to be vaccinated to participate in the fellowship?

The University of Michigan requires all students, faculty and staff to submit proof of vaccination. All Fellows are expected to follow university guidelines in order to participate in the program and its activities.

Does Wallace House help Fellows find housing in Ann Arbor?

We recognize that relocating to a new town for the fellowship is a big consideration and are committed to assisting Fellows with finding safe and comfortable housing. Usually, in spring and early summer, local landlords, who are familiar with the program and have had good experiences renting to Fellows, contact us with information on available rental houses and apartments. We forward these offerings to the incoming class. We are also working with properties around town, including developing a relationship with an apartment complex offering a nine-month lease to accommodate the academic calendar.

When are the application deadlines for the fellowship?

Applications for U.S. journalists are due on February 1.

International applications for the 2022-23 academic year are not open. We’ve awarded these fellowships to international journalists who previously committed to the program and could not participate due to the pandemic. Applications for international journalists (without U.S. passports) are traditionally due on December 1 for the academic year starting the following September.

Should I apply for the fellowship as a U.S. applicant or apply in the future as an international applicant?

You should apply based on your citizenship.

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.

When our international applications are open, if you are 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 apply2kwf@umich.edu with details of your citizenship and name of media organization and we will answer your questions.

Why are international applications closed for the 2022-2023 academic year?

We’ve awarded our international fellowships for the 2022-2023 academic year to international journalists who previously committed to the program and could not participate due to the pandemic. We plan to open international applications for the 2023-2024 academic year next fall.

In a traditional year are international and U.S. applications for the fellowship the same? Why is the deadline earlier for international applicants? 

Typically, the fellowship deadline for international applications is earlier because of the length of the visa process for successful applicants. Also, because we require additional information from our international Fellows, the international application process is split into two parts. International applicants start by completing only phase one. We notify international applicants if they are required to submit additional information for phase two.

In the past, the Knight-Wallace Fellowship featured international news tours. Is travel planned for the 2022-2023 fellowship class?

A hallmark of the Knight-Wallace experience, our Fellows embark on international news tours designed to challenge assumptions and make better journalists. At this time, international travel is not planned for the 2022-2023 fellowship class. We’ll monitor public health developments and return to our international fellowship travel in the future.

I participated in the remote fellowship as a Knight-Wallace Reporting Fellow, am I eligible to apply for the traditional Knight-Wallace Fellowship?

Journalists selected for the Reporting Fellowship are eligible to apply for the traditional Knight-Wallace Fellowship.

 

Do I need approval from my employer to apply for the fellowship?

We encourage applicants to work with their employers to help determine a course of study that benefits both the applicant and their news organization. For employers, supporting your fellowship can be an investment in your career development. We see the fellowship as a partnership to sharpen skills, broaden perspective, unleash creativity and develop leadership. Employer approval is not, however, required for consideration. 

Do I need to tailor my application for the fellowship to one of the specialized area fellowships?

No. We have several specialized fellowships within designed to support specific areas of journalism. But applicants should not force their journalism projects to fit one of our specialized categories. If your work and/or journalism project aligns with one of the dedicated fellowships, the selection committee will take that alignment into consideration.

What do you look for in a journalism project?

For your journalism project, we want to know what you think a Knight-Wallace Fellowship could do for you at this stage in your career. In roughly 500 words, tell us what you hope to gain for yourself, your news organization or the field of journalism more broadly. Do your reporting. Spend some time familiarizing yourself with the University of Michigan and its many schools, departments and resources. We do not need to know the specific courses you would take, but rather the academic areas and subjects you wish to pursue and/or the university resources that you plan to tap into. Be creative and authentic. Select a project that speaks to your goals and passions. Journalism projects can include, but are not limited to, sharpening professional skills, addressing a challenge facing your newsroom, digging into data and research for a long-term reporting project or developing a journalism venture.

When will U.S. Fellows for the fellowship be selected?

Below is the timeline for our fellowship.

  • February 1      U.S. application due
  • Mid-March      U.S. applicant finalists notified
  • April                 Interviews for finalists held
  • Early May        Fellowship offers extended
  • Late August    Fellows move to Ann Arbor for fellowship orientation 
  • August 29       Fall Semester begins

When are the international Fellows for the fellowship typically selected?

International applications for the 2022-23 academic year are not open. Below is the international application timeline for our fellowship when offered.

  • December 1     International applications traditionally due
  • Mid-January    Phase two invitations traditionally extended to international applicants
  • Late January   Interviews for international finalists traditionally held
  • Early May        Fellowship offers traditionally extended
  • Late August    Fellows move to Ann Arbor for fellowship orientation

If I am accepted for the Knight-Wallace Fellowship, can I continue to work?

If accepted for the Knight-Wallace Fellowship, you will need to take a leave of absence from your work to focus on the fellowship and your journalism project. We understand that our Fellows may have work that is completed but not yet published when the academic year begins. That is fine. But the fellowship should be your primary professional focus and you may not accept any new assignments for the duration of the fellowship.

Also, we expect you to limit any regular or frequent professional work attached to your journalism; i.e., media commentary or analysis, blogging, speaking or promotional engagements.

 

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