Applications are now being accepted for the Early-Career Fellowship Program for the year 2024. The deadline for submitting applications is October 31, 2023.
The Open Notebook offers an annual paid, part-time fellowship program tailored for early-career science journalists. During this ten-month fellowship, participants collaborate with experienced mentors to plan, report, and craft articles for publication on The Open Notebook platform. This opportunity allows fellows to delve into their career interests, refine their skills, and become an integral part of a diverse, supportive community of past and present fellows and mentors. The program is generously supported by the Burroughs Welcome Fund, a patron of this initiative since 2012.
Key Program Details:
- Fellowship Duration: 10 months (part-time)
- Fellowship Period: March 11 to January 11
- Location: Remote
- Stipend: $6,000
- Application Deadline: October 31
Fellowship Experience: Throughout the fellowship, fellows will develop, pitch, report, and write four articles for publication on The Open Notebook, covering a mix of “story behind the story” interviews and reported features. They will engage in regular phone or video meetings with mentors, who are experienced science journalists, receiving guidance on story development, reporting, writing, and overall career development. Fellows’ articles undergo multiple rounds of substantive editing before completion. Fellows are also responsible for annotating their articles for fact-checking and gathering demographic data on sources. Fellows and mentors engage in discussions via a Slack group, fostering a sense of community and ongoing connection.
Note: Although part-time, this fellowship requires a significant weekly time commitment. Prospective fellows with full-time jobs should carefully consider their ability to allocate sufficient time to meet the fellowship’s requirements, including interviews, mentor meetings, editing, and participation in the fellowship Slack community.
Eligibility: The fellowship is open to early-career science journalists with fewer than three years of regular professional science writing experience. Relevant details include:
- Internships and student work do not fulfill the experience requirement.
- International applicants are welcome, but all application materials, including writing samples and recommendation letters, must be in English or translated into English.
Selection Criteria: Preference is given to applicants who exhibit:
- Strong commitment to a career in professional science journalism
- Some training and/or experience in writing about science for the general public
- Understanding of the science journalism profession and its common challenges
- Familiarity with The Open Notebook and its typical coverage
- Ability to generate compelling story ideas suitable for The Open Notebook
- Proficient writing skills in English
Application Materials: Applicants must provide:
- Responses to specific questions regarding their interest in the fellowship, prior experience in writing about science for a general audience, relevant skills, interests, and future plans during the fellowship period
- Short proposals for two TON features or multimedia stories suitable for publication on The Open Notebook
- Resume or CV
- One letter of reference
- Up to two writing or multimedia samples targeting the general public
- Optional: Additional information regarding the applicant’s background and membership in underrepresented groups within U.S. journalism
We encourage applications from writers with diverse backgrounds and experiences. Information provided by applicants will remain confidential.
HOW TO APPLY