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2017 California Fellows

Matthew Bajko, Bay Area Reporter:  An exploration of the possible ramifications of the state’s request to residents to provide details about their gender identities when signing up for state programs

Harvey Barkin, FilAm Star: An examination of how the ACA benefitted Filipino American children in the Bay Area and what the likely changes may mean for their continuing care

Antonia Cereijido, Latino USA: An hour-long radio documentary on the struggle to bring safe drinking water to a mobile home park in the Eastern Coachella Valley, where high levels of arsenic have been found in the well water

Sandra Cervantes, Univision, Sacramento:  Two stories on the likely impact of the dismantling of healthcare reform on Latinos and an investigative piece about possible health hazards for installers of artificial turf

Kelly Davis, Voice of San Diego: An investigation of how well San Diego’s “housing first” program has worked

Merdies Hayes, Our Weekly, Los Angeles: An exploration of how the likely dismantling of Obamacare will affect Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital’s care of residents of Watts

Suzanne Hurt, Press-Enterprise, Riverside: The challenges that the public employees who survived the San Bernardino terrorist attack face getting needed care

Kerry Klein, Valley Public Radio, Fresno: The effects on health of the doctor shortage in the San Joaquin Valley and promising solutions

Mackenzie Mays, Fresno Bee and Vida en al Valle: The ramifications of a controversy over sex ed in Fresno and two adjoining counties

Jeff Mitchell, The Salinas Californian and El Sol: How low wages to farmworkers in the Salinas Valley contribute to poor nutrition, health problems and lack of social mobility

Padma Nagappan, The Cancer Newsletter and New America Media: The multiple barriers that prevent immigrants from getting cancer screening, care and access to trials

Marissa Ortega-WelchKALW, Oakland: The health impacts of crude oil extraction, transportion and refining oil

Molly Peterson, High Country News, KCRW: The health effects of climate change-related urban heat in the LA area

Harold Pierce, Bakersfield Californian: A hidden epidemic in Kern County: toxic stress

Jeremy Raff, The A video documentary on the concerns in the disabled community about proposed cuts to Medicaid

Denisse Salazar, Orange County Register and Excelsior:  A three-part series on the direct and indirect effects of gang violence on children

Liliana Sunn, KFPK, Los Angeles: A three-part series on how Obamacare has benefitted Latinos in Los Angeles and the possible impacts of likely changes

Monica Velez, Merced Sun-Star: An examination of the systemic barriers that prevent Medi-Cal clients in Merced County from getting timely care

Nick Welsh, Santa Barbara Independent: Three stories on community clinics, recuperative care for the homeless and the shortage of psychiatric beds in Santa Barbara County


Domestic violence affects tens of millions of Americans every year. Yet media outlets mostly treat incidents as "cops" items, if they cover them at all, as opposed to treating domestic violence as a public health problem. Our free two-day symposium will help journalists understand the root causes and promising prevention, intervention and treatment approaches.  Plus participants will be able to apply for grants to report California-focused projects.

The pandemic has unleashed a tsunami of misinformation, lies and half-truths capable of proliferating faster than the virus itself. In our next webinar, we’ll delve into what one of our speakers has termed “the natural ecology of bullshit” — how to spot it, how it spreads, who is most impacted, and how to counter it. And we’ll discuss reporting examples, strategies and story ideas that incorporate these insights and effectively communicate to diverse audiences. Sign-up here!

Are you passionate about helping journalists understand and illuminate the social factors that contribute to health and health disparities at a time when COVID-19 has highlighted the costs of such inequities? Looking to play a big role in shaping journalism today in the United States? The USC Center for Health Journalism seeks an enterprising and experienced journalism leader for our new position of “Manager of Projects.” 



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