Thursday, March 15, 2012

Free slot available for a rural journalist to attend Computer-Assisted Reporting Boot Camp Mar. 25-30

Rural reporters, editors and broadcasters:

This is very short notice, but any rural journalist (see definition below) who can clear the last week of the month has a marvelous opportunity to get FREE registration at the six-day Computer-Assisted Reporting Boot Camp of Investigative Reporters and Editors to be held at the University of Missouri March 25-30. This workshop is the gold standard in computer-assisted reporting, a skill that most journalists need, but one at which few are proficient.

You have a chance to attend the IRE Boot Camp without paying the $550 registration fee because the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues funds two Boot Camp scholarships for rural journalists each year, and no one has sought a scholarship to the upcoming boot camp. The Institute and IRE are still willing to accept your application, available by clicking here. To this application you need to add three examples of your work and a statement of how you hope to use the training. All the material should be faxed or emailed as soon as possible to IRE Executive Director Mark Horvit at 573-882-5432 or If you have questions, call Mark at 573-882-2042.

This scholarship is made possible by Daniel Gilbert, a Wall Street Journal energy reporter who won the Bristol Herald Courier the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service by reporting on mismanagement of pooled natural-gas royalties in Southwest Virginia. He donated his $10,000 prize from another contest, the Scripps Howard Awards, to the endowment of the Institute so other rural journalists could gain the skills that enabled him to do the prizewinning series. The Scripps Howard Foundation matched his gift, and the state of Kentucky matched both, creating a $40,000 Fund for Rural Computer-Assisted Reporting that generates enough earnings to sponsor two rural journalists each year at a Boot Camp just like the one Daniel attended.

Under terms of the endowment agreement, “rural journalist” means one working for any news outlet based outside a Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area, or a newspaper with a daily circulation of less than 40,000 whose geographic coverage or circulation area is primarily rural, or a broadcast station that is not in the top 100 markets as defined by Nielsen Inc. and has a mainly rural coverage area, or an online publication that has demonstrated an abiding interest in covering issues in rural areas.

We apologize for the short notice but look forward to your application!

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