Advertiser disclosure

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 that are transparent about sharing information on their websites (especially in regard to costs involved). Please note that the cost of each program was for the prior year. 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 the various programs. 

We organized  programs alphabetically, without endorsement for one program over another. Please note that we tried to include rough dates of when camps ran last year, but do not know exact dates for next summer. 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! 

AAJA’s JCamp

  • Eligibility: High school freshmen, sophomores, and juniors
  • Location: University of Southern California (USC)
  • Cost: Free! (if accepted into program) 

“AAJA” is an acronym for the Asian American Journalists Association. The AAJA’s JCamp, started in 2001, 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. Camp usually runs during the last week in July. 

Arizona State University Summer Journalism Institute

  • Eligibility: High school students
  • Location: Walter Cronkite School of Mass Communication at ASU
  • Cost: Free to all who are accepted 

The Arizona State University Summer Journalism Institute is a two-week camp for high school students. During the program, students will gain hands-on experience in reporting, producing newscasts and creating multimedia content. Camp usually starts the first week in June of each year. 

Boston University Summer Journalism Academy

  • Eligibility: Students ages 14 to 18
  • Location: Boston University campus or virtual
  • Cost: $1,300 to $3,700 for 10 days (depending on whether students are virtual, commuters, or live on campus)

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. 

Columbia University Summer Journalism Workshop

  • Eligibility: High school sophomores, juniors, or seniors
  • Location: Virtual, but may be face-to face for next year
  • Cost: $849 (per class)

The Columbia University Summer Journalism Workshop is a five-week event that offers eight different classes for high school students. Students may focus on writing, editing, management, or advanced design in each one week class (and are able to take multiple workshops). In addition to instruction, students receive feedback from their instructors. Classes are offered over five weeks in June and July. 

NYU Summer Journalism

  • Eligibility: High school sophomores and juniors
  • Location: NYU or virtual
  • Cost: $7,065

During the six-week NYU Precollege Summer program, students are able to choose from more than 100 online and in-person undergraduate courses, including journalism. Students have the opportunity to earn college credits while learning from the experienced journalist. The program usually starts the first week in July and runs until mid-August. 

Northwestern University Medill-Northwestern Journalism Institute

  • Eligibility: Rising high school seniors
  • Location: Virtual, but may be face-to face for next year
  • Cost: $2,900

The MNJI (Medill-Northwestern Journalism Institute) is a five-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. 

Princeton Summer Journalism Program

  • Eligibility: Low-income high school juniors 
  • Location: Virtual, but may be face-to face for next year
  • Cost: Free (including transportation)

Started in 2002, the PSJP (Princeton Summer Journalism Program) is a 10-day virtual experience led by Princeton professors and professional journalists. The summer program allows students to publish in the Princeton Summer Journal which is Princeton’s student-run newspaper. 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 program runs from late July through the first week of August.   

The National Student Leadership Conference’s Film, Journalism & Media Arts Summer Program

  • Eligibility: High school freshmen, sophomores, juniors, or seniors
  • Location: American University or University of California, Berkeley
  • Cost: $3,600 (does not include transportation to and from program)

NSLC is the National Student Leadership Conference’s Film, Journalism & Media Arts summer program that provides students with the opportunities to learn from journalists, public relations experts, web designers, and media professionals. The program is offered at either American University or the University of California, Berkeley. Aspiring journalism students will be able to work with either schools’ journalism equipment. The camps, depending on location, run in June and July. 

Also see: Communications major overview

The New York Times NYC Summer Academy

  • Eligibility: High school sophomores, juniors, or seniors
  • Location: New York City
  • Cost: $5,325-$5,925

The New York Times NYC Summer Academy is a two-week program taught by award-winning Times journalists and journalism experts. The students have NYC as their campus and are able to attend field trips and special events. Camps usually  run throughout June and July. 

UGA Summer Academy

  • Eligibility: Students ages 13-17
  • Location: University of Georgia (Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication)
  • Cost: $440-$600 (depending on whether students attend overnight camp)

The UGA Summer Academy is a five-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 usually takes place in mid-June of each year. 

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
Next Steps

Don’t miss: Top summer programs