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    Top 10 Journalism Summer Programs

    By Cece Gilmore

    Cece Gilmore is a Content Writer at Scholarships360. Cece earned her undergraduate degree in Journalism and Mass Communications from Arizona State University. While at ASU, she was the education editor as well as a published staff reporter at Downtown Devil. Cece was also the co-host of her own radio show on Blaze Radio ASU.

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    Edited by Maria Geiger

    Maria Geiger is Director of Content at Scholarships360. She is a former online educational technology instructor and adjunct writing instructor. In addition to education reform, Maria’s interests include viewpoint diversity, blended/flipped learning, digital communication, and integrating media/web tools into the curriculum to better facilitate student engagement. Maria earned both a B.A. and an M.A. in English Literature from Monmouth University, an M. Ed. in Education from Monmouth University, and a Virtual Online Teaching Certificate (VOLT) from the University of Pennsylvania.

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    Updated: February 8th, 2024
    Top 10 Journalism Summer Programs

    Are you an aspiring journalist who has always been curious about working in a real-life newsroom? If you answered “yes” to both of these questions, then a summer journalism program sounds like the ideal way to spend part of your summer. Keep reading to learn more about the top journalism summer programs available. 

    What exactly is a journalism summer program? 

    Summer journalism programs are an opportunity for high school students to gain real-life experience working as a journalist. Typically, these programs take place at colleges and universities known for their top-notch journalism schools. 

    Journalism camps allow students to immerse themselves in exploring current events through workshops with other students who are passionate about journalism. Workshops and classes are usually taught by top journalism professors, so enrollees are learning from experts in the field. 

    Why we selected the following summer journalism programs

    We searched for reputable summer journalism programs from schools that are on the Scholarships360 top colleges for students in 2024 list and that are transparent about sharing information on their websites (especially in regard to costs involved). We are happy to share that there are fully funded programs for those who qualify. Keep in mind that students are usually responsible for the cost of traveling to and from the various programs. 

    We organized the programs alphabetically, without endorsement for one program over another. Make sure you check early (start on January 1st to be safe!) so you know when program applications open. Keep on reading to find the right journalism camp for next summer! 

    1. AAJA’s JCamp

    • Eligibility: High school sophomores and juniors
    • Location: A different school and city each year (this year: The University of Texas at Austin
    • Cost: Free! (if accepted into program) 
    • Application deadline: March 1, 2024
    • Camp dates: August 3-9, 2024

    “AAJA” is an acronym for the Asian American Journalists Association. The AAJA’s JCamp is a national multicultural journalism program for high school students. This 6-day training camp brings together a diverse group of students who learn about the importance of ethics, diversity, and leadership from veteran journalists. Everything involved in attending AAJA’s Camp is covered, including airfare, lodging and meals. During the camp week, all students are housed in campus dorms. The camp will take place early August in Austin, Texas. 

    2. Arizona State University Summer Journalism Institute

    The Arizona State University Summer Journalism Institute is a 6-day camp for high school students. During the program, students will gain hands-on experience in reporting, producing newscasts and creating multimedia content. Campers will be able to select their preferred elective sessions from topics like sports photography or newsroom tours. During this time, campers will sleep in the dorms and eat dining hall food. The camp will take place at the end of June.

    3. Boston University Summer Journalism Academy

    • Eligibility: Students ages 14 to 18
    • Location: Boston University campus or virtual
    • Cost: $1,500 to $6,200 for 3 weeks (depending on whether students are virtual, commuters, or live on campus)
    • Application deadline: April 19, 2024 (for on-campus) May 10, 2024 (for learn-from-home) 
    • Camp Virtual dates: 
      • A: June 17-28, 2024
      • B: July 1-12, 2024
      • C: July 15-26, 2024

    The Boston University Summer Journalism Academy offers students the opportunity to prepare for college and learn new skills by learning from a working journalist. Students learn in the classroom and the newsroom gaining hands-on experience reporting throughout the Boston area. Three different sessions are offered, starting in the third week of June through July with an on-campus and learn-from-home option. 

    4. Columbia University Summer Journalism Workshop

    • Eligibility: High school sophomores, juniors, or seniors
    • Location: Columbia University campus or virtual
    • Cost: $849 (per class)
    • Application deadline: 
    • Camp dates: 
    • On-campus date: June 23-28, 2024
    • Virtual dates: 
      • A: July 8-12, 2024
      • B: July 15-19, 2024
      • C: July 22-26, 2024

    The Columbia University Summer Journalism Workshop is a 5-day event that offers eight different classes for high school students. Students may focus on reporting, writing, editorial leadership and design. In addition to instruction, students receive feedback from their instructors. The in-person session will run from June 23 to 28 while there will be 3 distinct  virtual sessions in July. 

    5. NYU Urban Journalism Workshop

    • Eligibility: High school juniors and seniors attending schools in New York, New Jersey or Connecticut
    • Location: NYU or virtual
    • Cost: Free
    • Application deadline: March 1, 2024
    • Camp dates: July 15-24, 2024

    This 10-day camp was designed to identify and help fix the under-represnetation of African-American, Hispanic, Asian and Indigenous journalists. During the workshop, students will be taught by NYU faculty and visiting professionals. Students will live in one of the NYU dorms, produce stories to be published on NYU’s newspaper, The Spectrum’s website, visit New York newsrooms and gain valuable insight on the college admissions process from NYU admissions counselors.  

    6. Northwestern University Medill Cherubs Program 

    • Eligibility: Rising high school seniors
    • Location: Northwestern University
    • Cost: $5,000
    • Application deadline: March 11, 2024
    • Camp dates: June 23 to July 19, 2024

    The Institute (Medill Cherubs) is a four-week program for students seeking to experience professional journalism. During this program. students gain experience in digital journalism, editing, print, video, photojournalism, and reporting. Student reporters, known as “cherubs” (members of the journalism “Cherub Program), attend camp from late June through July. 

    7. Princeton Summer Journalism Program

    • Eligibility: Low-income high school juniors 
    • Location: Princeton University and virtual
    • Cost: Free (including transportation)
    • Application deadline: February 15, 2024
    • Camp dates: July 26 to August 5, 2024

    The PSJP (Princeton Summer Journalism Program) is a 10-day in-person experience led by Princeton professors and professional journalists along with virtual workshops and lectures throughout the year. In fact during the summer, students are matched with a personal college advisor who will help them to build a college list, revise college essays, submit applications and make a final college decision during their senior year. There are specific low-income requirements which are part of determining whether a student is accepted. If accepted, the PSJP covers all costs, including transportation to the Princeton campus if the program is held there. The on-campus portion of the program runs from late July through the first week of August.   

    8. UF Summer Media Institute

    • Eligibility: High school students
    • Location: University of Florida
    • Cost: $850 – $1,050 (depending on when students apply) 
    • Application deadline: May 1, 2024
    • Camp dates: June 23-28, 2024

    The UF Summer Media Institute is a 5-night, 6-day workshop in which high school students are immersed in journalism and communications. During this time, students will take advantage of UF’s journalism school’s equipment and learn from knowledgeable faculty. Students will have a variety of specializations to choose from such as anchoring, broadcast reporting, news writing, photojournalism and much more! 

    9. UGA Summer Academy

    • Eligibility: Students ages 13-17
    • Location: University of Georgia (Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication)
    • Cost: $500-$1,175 (depending on whether students attend overnight camp)
    • Application deadline: March 15, 2024
    • Camp dates: June 10-14, 2024

    The UGA Summer Academy is a four-day journalism camp that teaches students to become multi-skilled journalists in the age of social media. Students practice interviewing, reporting, writing, and editing. In addition, the class produces a news website by the end of their hands-on journalism experience. Camp will take place from June 10 to June 14. 

    10. Indiana University High School Journalism Institute

    • Eligibility: High school students
    • Location: Indiana University-Bloomington
    • Cost: $515 (plus $30 per night if you wish to stay on campus) 
    • Application deadline: June 15, 2024
    • Camp dates: July 8-12, 2024 & July 14-18, 2024

    The Indiana University journalism immersion summer program provides students the opportunity to visit campus and develop their journalism skills. The workshop will be taught by journalism professional and award-winning advisers. A typical day will be attending small-group classes, individualized instruction, large-group lectures and evening activities. 

    Also see: Top journalism scholarships

    Next Steps

    Next Steps

    • Sit down and reflect on what you hope to get out of a journalism summer program and what type of journalism interests you
    • If possible, talk to professionals in the field and get an idea of what type of journalism is right for you
    • Find the program that suits your academic interests, price range, and geographical constraints best
    • Start working on your applications! Remember to start them with plenty of time to spare so you can go back and review essays
    • Apply as early as possible! A lot of these summer journalism programs offer early bird specials. This means if you apply early, you will receive money off the cost of the program
    Next Steps

    Don’t miss: Top summer programs

    Frequently asked questions about journalism summer camps

    Will participating in a college’s summer journalism program help me be admitted to that school?

    Participating in a school’s summer journalism program will not guarantee that you will be admitted to their school as it is a separate entity. However, it can look good on your application and provide a great topic to write about when asked supplemental essay questions on their application.

    Do I have to major in journalism if I participate in a school’s summer journalism program?

    No! The point of the journalism summer programs is to provide students valuable knowledge and experience in the field of journalism to help them learn if this is something they truly want to pursue and love. Therefore, there is no pressure if you do not want to major in journalism! In fact, the program can reveal that journalism is not something you want to do which can help you choose a career you will love in the future by ruling out this one.

    What should I do in high school if I want to be a journalist?

    If you want to major in journalism, there is nothing special you need to do in high school besides be accepted into a journalism program! However, some great extracurriculars to boost your resume to become a journalist would be to join a student newspaper or yearbook club, enter a writing contest or scholarship competition, or enroll in a summer journalism program! 

    What type of degree do most journalists have?

    Journalism is a large field encompassing multiple fields of interest and niches; therefore, you could major in almost anything to later become a journalist! However,  journalists typically have a bachelor’s degree in journalism, English, communications or a related field. However, it is not uncommon, for example, for a business writer to have a business degree or a farm magazine editor to have a degree in agriculture. Ultimately, becoming a journalist depends on the connections you make and the skills you possess.

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