In an effort to address the critical need to diversify the ranks of investigative editors in newsrooms across the country, ProPublica announced Thursday the Investigative Editor Training Program. Funded by the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, this one-year training program will support talented news editors in learning the craft of investigative editing from ProPublica’s prizewinning editors and staff.
Studies in recent years have shown that leadership in newsrooms around the country does not represent the diversity of the communities that they cover. That’s particularly acute in investigative news. Part of the reason for those low numbers is that journalists from diverse backgrounds have historically been passed over for opportunities to do investigative reporting and editing, which lessens their ability to pursue this specialty later in their careers. This program is aimed at bolstering that pipeline.
“ProPublica was founded to create journalism that spurs real-world change,” said Stephen Engelberg, ProPublica’s editor in chief. “We are incredibly excited to play a role in training the new, diverse generation of newsroom leaders. Behind almost every great story, there’s a great editor whose passion, patience and craft made all the difference. We look forward to expanding the pipeline of people who do that essential work.”
The program will launch in summer 2023 with a weeklong, all-expenses-paid boot camp in New York that will coach editors how to conceive of, produce and edit investigative projects that expose harm and create impact. The editors will learn how to guide reporters through complicated accountability stories, including challenges related to deciphering data, obtaining documents and engaging sources who have suffered trauma. Attendees will also learn how to work collaboratively with research, data and multimedia teams to elevate an investigative project and maximize impact potential.
After the boot camp, participants will gather virtually every two months until summer 2024 for seminars and career development discussions with their cohort and ProPublica journalists. Each participant will be assigned a ProPublica senior editor as a mentor for one-on-one consultation about ongoing stories, management challenges and how to most effectively pursue their own professional aspirations.
The program is open to all, but we especially encourage people from traditionally underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, LGBTQ people and people with disabilities.
The ideal participants will have:
- A minimum of five years of journalism experience, either as an editor or as a reporter primarily doing work with an investigative or accountability focus.
- A strong grasp of the basics of editing, storytelling, structure and framing.
- Experience managing a team of journalists or a complicated multipronged reporting project.
- An accountability mindset and an eye for watchdog reporting and editing.
The application period will open on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023, and close on Monday, March 13, 2023. The cohort will be announced in April 2023. Here are more details for those interested in applying.
This program is funded through the generous support of the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, which supports organizations advancing social justice by empowering world-changing work in investigative journalism, documentary film and arts and culture.