Cal Humanities

"Part of resilience is finding joy, finding beauty, finding love."

— George Takei, Actor, Author, Director, Activist

"Part of resilience is finding joy, finding beauty, finding love."

— George Takei, Actor, Author, Director, Activist

California Humanities Announces Democracy and the Informed Citizen Emerging Journalist Fellowships

The Program provides $88,000 in support of community college student journalists. 

March 1, 2021
For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Cherie Hill, Communications Manager, 
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(Oakland & Los Angeles, CA) —California Humanities is pleased to announce the launch of the 2021 Democracy and the Informed Citizen Emerging Journalist Fellowship program. With support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation through the Federation of State Humanities Councils, this statewide initiative is designed to support and amplify student journalists’ voices and perspectives who are enrolled at California community colleges.

Through a competitive application process, $88,000 in fellowship funds were awarded to eight community colleges supporting 32 student journalists. Ranging from rural far northern California to the southern US/Mexico border region, the campuses reflect the state’s breadth of geography and diversity. Campuses awarded fellowships include:

Bakersfield College, Bakersfield
De Anza College, Cupertino
Los Angeles City College, Los Angeles
San Diego City College, San Diego
City College of San Francisco, San Francisco
Santa Rosa Junior College, Santa Rosa
Shasta College, Redding
Riverside City College, Riverside

In addition to financial support, participating fellows receive enhanced training in local and community-engaged journalism, podcasting, media literacy, and mentoring from professional journalists. As part of the fellowship, students will propose and conduct a focused reporting project on regional issues of importance shared with statewide audiences through an online portal. Throughout, the initiative’s goals are to incorporate the insight and perspective of journalists and the context and inquiry of the humanities to develop critical journalism skills and encourage media literacy and civic engagement.

“Our commitment to supporting the next generation is integral to our organization’s strategic framework, ” states California Humanities President & CEO Julie Fry. “We are proud to expand the program this year to include more community college partners and student voices in journalism.”

The statewide cohort of fellows convened virtually for a kick-off media summit in January 2021. They will meet regularly throughout the semester. The convenings offer students opportunities to make connections with peers in different regions of the state and share their work, reflect on their role as journalists and media makers, and learn practical skills from professional journalists and one another.

The Democracy and the Informed Citizen Emerging Journalist Fellowship program is presented in partnership with the Journalism Association of Community Colleges (JACC).

To learn more about the Democracy and Informed Citizen program and the CA 2020: Youth Perspective and the Future of California Initiative, click here.

About California Humanities:
California Humanities, a nonprofit partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities, promotes the humanities—focused on ideas, conversation and learning—as relevant, meaningful ways to understand the human condition and connect people to each other in order to help strengthen California. California Humanities has provided grants and programs across the state since 1975. To learn more, visit, or like and follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.



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