Internships and Fellowships
Internships can be a great way to get clips (published writing), connect with editors, and experience what it’s like to be a science journalist. Summer positions at newspaper and some radio internships are usually posted in the fall, while internships at magazines, nonprofits, and research institutions typically go up between January and March, though these are rough estimates. We recommend getting in touch early with editors at publications you’re interested in working at. The National Association of Science Writers also hosts an internship fair meet-and-greet at the AAAS conference each February, which is a great way to find internships. It may also be helpful to look for positions directly through publications’ websites.
Fellowships vary widely in duration, funding, and program structure. Some provide funding for more established journalists to pursue long-term projects and coursework while others resemble internships. Below, we’ve compiled some internship and fellowship resources for both early career and mid-career journalists.
- The AAAS Diverse Voices in Science Journalism Internship. This is a paid, 10-week summer internship at Science magazine for undergraduate students. Applicants should have a strong commitment to diversity and be considering science journalism as a career.
- Science News Internship. Science News offers three full-time internships per year (spring, summer, and fall). Interns pitch, report, and write news stories and features. All internships last a minimum of three months, and interns are paid $16/hour. Applicants studying science writing at the graduate level will be given preference.
- AAAS Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellowship. This paid ($7,000 + travel), 10-week summer fellowship pairs STEM students and scientists (advanced undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate) with media outlets. Fellows work with media professionals to strengthen science media coverage and develop fellows’ own science communication skills.
- Fulbright-National Geographic Storytelling Fellowship. This fellowship funds a yearlong storytelling project on a “globally significant theme.” Fellows receive all Fulbright benefits as well as instruction in storytelling.
- The Open Notebook Early-Career Science Journalism Fellowship. This is a part-time, eight-month fellowship for people with less than two years of professional science writing experience. Fellows write six articles for The Open Notebook and work closely with a mentor and participate in a professional discussion group. Fellows receive a $4,200 stipend.
- Mother Jones Ben Bagdikian Fellowship Program. Mother Jones offers full-time, yearlong Digital Media, Editorial, and Strategic Communications fellowships. Responsibilities vary across offices and roles. Editorial fellows gain experience in investigative journalism and get a behind-the-scenes view of working at a nonprofit news outlet. Fellows receive a $3,250 monthly stipend.
- University of Toronto, Dalla Lana Fellowship in Global Journalism. If you are an expert in your field and would like to cover it as a journalist, the Dalla Lana Fellowship can help you develop the skills you need to do that. The program kicks off with a five-week bootcamp, and then fellows report stories in their field for the fellowship program’s media partners.
- Google News Initiative Fellowship. This program matches journalism and technology students with news organizations around the world for paid summer fellowships.
- Grist Fellowship. Grist offers paid, six-month fellowships (three spring, three fall) for early-career journalists with interest in covering environmental issues. Fellows report, write, and develop essential journalism skills.
- High Country News Internships. Each year, High Country News offers six, six-month editorial internships for people interested in covering the American West. Interns develop, report, and write stories and receive a $679.85 bi-weekly stipend. HCN sometimes offers fellowships for early-career journalists as well. Fellows receive a $1,187.5 bi-weekly stipend.
- The Economist, Richard Casement internship. The Economist has a three-month summer internship for an aspiring journalist to write about science and technology. The intern will be paid €2,000 per month.
- Scripps Howard Foundation Fellowships and Internships. The Scripps Howard Foundation funds journalism internships and offers fellowships with placements at Scripps/Newsy and ProPublica.
- Marine Biological Laboratory Logan Science Journalism Program. For science journalists with limited experience in the field or lab, this fellowship provides an opportunity to learn what it’s like to conduct research. Participants choose between biomedical and environmental research tracks for the weeklong program in Woods Hole, MA.
- AHCJ Reporting Fellowships. The Association of Health Care Journalists provides limited funding for major reporting projects related to the US health care system.
- Cissy Patterson Endowment for Science and Environmental Writers. The Alicia Patterson Foundation awards a $40,000 fellowship to one science or environmental journalist each year for work on an independent project.
- The Eugene C. Pulliam Fellowship for Editorial Writing. Each year, the Society of Professional Journalists awards one mid-career editorial writer or columnist $75,000 to take a break from the daily beat and spend their time studying, traveling, or conducting research.
- International Center for Journalism Knight Fellowships. These fellowships fund innovative communicators to introduce new modes of reporting and storytelling to newsrooms around the world. Fellowships last at least a year.
- John S. Knight Fellowship. The JSK fellowship program at Stanford provides a diverse group of journalists with professional and financial support. Typically, fellows study at Stanford, but during the pandemic, the program has shifted to remote Community Impact Fellowships.
- Knight Science Journalism. The KSJ fellowship program at MIT offers mid-career science journalists an opportunity to take classes at MIT and neighboring universities during the academic year, and pursue an independently led journalism project. The position includes a $70,000 stipend and a $2,500 relocation allowance.
- Knight-Wallace Fellowship. This fellowship, based out of the University of Michigan, provides journalists who have least five years of experience the opportunity to live and take classes at the university. Like many other residential programs, the Knight-Wallace Fellowship has transitioned to a project-based, remote model during the pandemic.
- Nieman Fellowship. The Nieman Foundation awards up to 24 journalists with at least five years of experience the opportunity to spend a year auditing courses at Harvard and developing professional and leadership skills. The fellowship includes $75,000 awarded over nine months.
- The Reuters Institute, Journalist Fellowship. The fellowship brings roughly 30 mid-career journalists from around the world to Oxford University for a funded, several-month program. Fellows conduct research, attend seminars and events, and work on an independent project.
- University of Colorado Boulder, Scripps Fellowships. This is a paid ($71,000), yearlong environmental journalism fellowship program at the University of Colorado, Boulder, funded by the Scripps Howard Foundation.
- Finding and Landing the Right Internship in Science Writing. In this helpful guide from The Open Notebook, you’ll find tips about what to look for in and expect from science writing internships.
- The Intern’s Survival Guide. Also from The Open Notebook, this article offers tips on how to make the most of your science writing internships.
- Global Investigative Journalism Network, Grants & Fellowships. GIJN maintains a list of grants and fellowships that fund investigative journalism.
- The Society of Environmental Journalists, Non-SEJ Environmental Journalism Fellowships and Workshops. SEJ maintains a list of fellowships and workshops for environmental journalists.