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Data Fellowship - How to Apply

Application period for 2022 now open!  

Ready to apply? 

Applications Materials

  • Personal Statement and Project Proposal: Tell us about yourself and why you want to participate in the program (250 words). Provide a description of the project you’re pursuing. Consider these questions: What is your goal for this project? How would it have an impact for a community or for policy? What makes this reporting new or important? (500 words)

  • Deliverables Statement: Number of stories you’ll be reporting, and tentative story themes or focus, including any multimedia elements you plan to incorporate (photos, video, audio, graphics, etc) (750-1,000 words)

  • Impact Statement: How you believe your proposed project will make an impact.
  • Three samples of your most recent or relevant work

  • Editor reference letter and completed Editor Checklist form 

  • Resume

Who is eligible to apply?

  • Professional journalists (including freelancers). We have accepted reporters in the past across all skill and experience levels, from journalists at the smallest rural newspapers to Pulitzer prize winners at national outlets. Just come with a willingness to learn!

  • Reporters with varying degrees of experience with data analysis, however applicants should have, at minimum, a basic understanding of Excel. We cater our program to the skillsets of admitted Fellows. 

We give preference to: 

  • Applicants who have a minimum of three years of professional journalism experience

  • Reporters pursuing collaborative projects between mainstream and ethnic news outlets

Reporting themes we support

We embrace a broad view of health, which doesn’t just happen at doctor’s offices and hospitals. Health is shaped by our environment — our schools, our neighborhoods and our communities. We strive to admit Fellows whose Fellowship proposals reflects that. 

Here are a few broad reporting themes we support in Fellowship proposals: 

For California Journalists:

Topics to consider include mental health and access to mental health care; maternal health, health care access and quality of care for underserved populations; health and homelessness, systemic racism and root causes of health inequities; School-to-prison pipeline as a health issue; how where you live and the environment in which you life influences health and well-being; systemic barriers to health tied to race, poverty, and economic opportunity; ongoing health care, community and public health challenges related to COVID-19; and innovative solutions to the state's public health and health care challenges.

For Journalists Nationally: 

Topics to consider include child, youth and family well-being; the role of intergenerational trauma and chronic stress on health, well-being and child development; explorations of families and communities that experience historic and systemic inequities, including youth involved with the foster system; juvenile justice and child health and well-being issues, accountability and solutions journalism focused on improving prospects for children, youth and families; the intersection of race/ethnicity and/or class in child and family outcomes; strengths-based approaches to improving outcomes for vulnerable children and families; creative financing and cross-agency strategies to treat and prevent the impacts of child maltreatment on children and families; and innovative solutions; and community and public health challenges related to COVID-19.

Click here to read our Frequently Asked Questions. Don’t see your question answered there? Reach out to us directly:


The pandemic has thrown into brutal relief the extent to which the U.S. health care system produces worse outcomes for patients of color. And yet there has been scant focus on one of the biggest drivers of structural racism in health care: How doctors and hospitals are paid. In this webinar, we’ll highlight the ways in which the health care system’s focus on money and good grades is shortchanging the health of communities of color. Sign-up here!

U.S. children and teens have struggled with increasing rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal behavior for much of the past decade. Join us as we explore the systemic causes and policy failures that have accelerated the crisis and its inequitable impact, as well as promising community-driven approaches and evidence-based practices. The webinar will provide fresh ideas for reporting on the mental health of youth and investigating the systems and services. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors and a social media consultant to join its team. Learn more about the positions and apply.


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