April 10, 2019

The teaching partnership will bring the journalism training expertise of Poynter to the Charles Koch Institute’s established fellowship.


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (April 10, 2019) – The Poynter Institute, a global leader in journalism excellence, and the Charles Koch Institute (CKI), a champion of free speech and collaboration, announce the Poynter-Koch Media & Journalism Fellowship.

Poynter faculty joined the teaching team of the CKI fellowship during the 2018-19 program year, bringing its ethics expertise to the curriculum. Since that time, Poynter launched the Craig Newmark Center for Ethics and Leadership, a platform to expand the scope of Poynter’s work and influence. This, coupled with Poynter’s 40-plus year history as a global leader in professional journalism development and education, led to the establishment of a new partnership role with CKI’s journalism fellowship program.

“The ability of the press to inquire, investigate and freely follow the truth is a defining element of a liberal democracy,” said Charles Koch Institute’s Sarah Ruger. “Poynter’s unparalleled expertise grounds those pursuits in a richer understanding of the tenets of solid journalism. And, we’re excited to see the growth from our earlier collaborations into this new partnership.”

Approximately 45 early-career journalists will be admitted to the yearlong program designed to encourage entrepreneurial journalists and storytellers. This career accelerator focuses on the pillars of First Amendment law, foundations of a free press, media ethics, reporting/storytelling techniques and digital literacy, including best practices in social media. Faculty include NPR’s Ashley Messenger and former CNN White House correspondent Dan Lothian. Other industry experts will lead sessions.

In addition to placement in the newsroom of a participating organization, fellows will gather for in-person training as a group three times throughout the year at either CKI’s office in Arlington, VA or at the Poynter campus in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Participants will also benefit from weekly, two-hour online workshops throughout the duration of the program. Fellows will be encouraged to connect with and learn from each other through this online cohort.

“This fellowship gives us an opportunity to work closely with early-career reporters, training them to skillfully navigate ethical issues and build trust with audiences through their work online,” said Poynter Senior Vice President Kelly McBride. “It’s a great way to both help young journalists and support professional news organizations that need more reporters.”

Applications are now open for the Poynter-Koch Media & Journalism Fellowship. The deadline to apply is May 10.

The fellowship partnership builds on an earlier collaboration between the two organizations. In 2017, the pair introduced The Poynter College Media Project which was funded by the Charles Koch Foundation, the grant-making sister organization of the Charles Koch Institute. In 2018, the college media program was expanded to accommodate more college campuses and is currently serving nine universities across the United States. The program combines in-person training, online teaching and support for a campus project geared toward achieving two goals: improving student journalism and modeling civil dialogue through news coverage and related events.


About The Poynter Institute:

The Poynter Institute for Media Studies is a global leader in journalism education and a strategy center that stands for uncompromising excellence in journalism, media and 21st-century public discourse. Poynter faculty teach seminars and workshops at the Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida, and at conferences and organizations around the world. Its e-learning division, News University, offers the world’s largest online journalism curriculum, with hundreds of interactive courses and tens of thousands of registered international users. The Institute’s website, poynter.org, produces 24-hour coverage about media, ethics, technology and the business of news. Poynter is the home of the Craig Newmark Center for Ethics and Leadership, the Pulitzer Prize-winning PolitiFact, the International Fact-Checking Network and MediaWise, a teen digital information literacy project. Collectively, this work builds public awareness about journalism, media, the First Amendment and discourse that serves democracy and the public good.

Per Poynter’s Ethics Policy, Poynter maintains editorial independence regarding curriculum and content. The media and journalism fellowship relationship between Poynter and the Charles Koch Institute is a teaching partnership. A list of Poynter’s largest 2019 funders and teaching partners can be found here.


About the Charles Koch Institute

For more than five decades, Charles Koch’s philanthropy has inspired bold new ideas to improve American lives. Inspired by a recognition that free people are capable of extraordinary things, the Charles Koch Institute supports education and dialogue to advance these principles and challenge convention. We work to remove barriers to opportunity for all Americans, helping individuals transform their lives. To learn more visit charleskochinstitute.org.


Contact: Tina Dyakon
Director of Marketing and Communications
The Poynter Institute

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