1972 – National Endowment for the Humanities Journalism Fellowships Established by Ben Yablonky

November 01, 1972

Ben Yablonky (1910–1991), U-M journalism professor and former Nieman fellow (1946), receives funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a mid-career journalism fellowship program at the University of Michigan.

Yablonky, educator, labor activist, and former journalist, modeled the fellowship after his personal experience with professional fellowship programs as a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University in 1945-1946 and as a grantee of the Fund for Adult Education Leadership Training Awards in the Mass Media in 1957-1958. The journalism department at U-M administered the program.

The inaugural class consisted of 12 fellows. Fellows designed their own individual courses of study, consisting of auditing university courses, tutorials arranged with individual scholars, research in the libraries, and any combination that met the Fellows’ needs. In addition, Fellows attended special weekly seminars in the Frieze building, the early home of the fellowship.

Ben Yablonky (standing) with journalism fellows in the University of Michigan Frieze building, the first fellowship home.