NPR Reflect America Fellowship Application and Program Information Strengthen your journalistic skills while bringing new, diverse sources to NPR during this 12-month fellowship.
NPR logo Help Shape the Sound of NPR: Apply for the 'Reflect America' Fellowship

Help Shape the Sound of NPR: Apply for the 'Reflect America' Fellowship

Come learn and grow with award-winning journalists at NPR as a 'Reflect America' Fellow. Jeannie Phan for NPR hide caption

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Jeannie Phan for NPR

Come learn and grow with award-winning journalists at NPR as a 'Reflect America' Fellow.

Jeannie Phan for NPR

The Reflect America Fellowship will bring a tenacious journalist to NPR for 12 months to help our journalism look and sound like America by finding new, diverse sources.

The fellowship is designed for an early- or mid-career journalist who wants to work and grow in one of the nation's most dynamic newsrooms. The Fellow will have the opportunity to gain critical skills in reporting, writing and producing on audio and digital platforms while working with some of the country's best journalists.

Read the FAQ below for more information.

Background

Why did you create the Reflect America Fellowship?
This fellowship builds on six years of work to increase the diversity of NPR's sources. In 2013, the network began tracking the race/ethnicity, gender and geographic location of its news sources on its two largest shows, Morning Edition and All Things Considered. NPR found that its sources were overwhelmingly white, male and located on the East and West coasts. A 2016 study of digital sources and a more recent radio study found similar challenges. This fellowship will boost newsroom efforts to bring more voices into our journalism.

What does the fellowship involve?
The fellowship is a series of three-month rotations spent with various shows and coverage teams at NPR's headquarters in Washington, D.C. The Fellow will be embedded with producers, reporters, editors and other staff, working to find, vet and book a diversity of experts and everyday people for stories and interviews on the radio, online and in podcasts. The final rotation will be spent reporting for one of NPR's news desks. The Fellow will also support the efforts of NPR and Member stations to build a public media workforce that reflects America.

Will I be on the air and get bylines on NPR.org?
Yes. We expect the Reflect America Fellow to do research and develop sources in partnership with reporters, producers and editors. But part of the fellowship will include opportunities to report on air and online.

Do you have to be an American citizen to take part in the program?
No, but foreign nationals must have appropriate employment authorizations.

Who should apply?
Journalists with at least two years' experience (including internships and other fellowships) in any journalism medium. A full job description and application can be found here.

The Reflect America Fellowship is currently not accepting applications.

Application Details and Deadlines

What do I need in order to apply?
1. In lieu of a cover letter, each completed application must include answers to the following questions:

  • Where would you look for more diverse sources?
  • What news stories do you think will be most important in 2020?
  • What are your favorite accounts to follow on social media when it comes to staying informed?
  • Tell us about a time when you pitched a story or a source that was rejected. What did you learn from that?
  • Tell us about an NPR story you think would have been enhanced by more diverse sources. Who would you have interviewed instead? Why?

2. Up to five links to your best journalistic work

3. The names and contact information for two people who can speak to your work ethic, journalistic skills and passion for diversity

4. Resume

How do I apply?
Submit your application here.

When is the application deadline?
Applications close at 11:59 p.m. EST on Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019.

Selection Process

How many Reflect America Fellows will be selected?
We will choose one fellow.

Who chooses the Reflect America Fellow?
The Reflect America Fellowship Committee is made up of newsroom managers and staff (including the previous Fellow) and members of the NPR Training team.

What is the timeline for selecting the Reflect America Fellow?

  • Nov. 12, 2019: Applications open.
  • Dec. 15, 2019: Applications close.
  • December 2019: Applications are reviewed by NPR staff. Top-ranking applications are referred to the Reflect America Fellowship Committee.
  • January 2020: Three finalists are selected by the Fellowship Committee and invited to NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., for interviews.
  • Jan. 21, 2020: The selected Fellow is notified.
  • March 2, 2020: The fellowship begins in Washington, D.C.

Is the Reflect America Fellowship paid?
Yes. The Fellow receives $70,000 a year, plus benefits, which include health insurance and paid vacation.

Is housing paid for?
No. Fellows are expected to secure their own lodging in the Washington, D.C. area.

After The Fellowship

What happens when the fellowship is over?
Completion of the fellowship does not guarantee a job at NPR. We'll do all we can to help you make connections at NPR or at one of the hundreds of NPR Member stations around the country.

Still have questions?
Send additional questions to reflectamerica@npr.org during the application period (Nov. 12-Dec. 15, 2019).