Do you have the knowledge and context to bring your news audience accurate, science-based stories about hurricanes, hazardous drought conditions, coastal storms, flooding and other extreme impacts caused by climate change? Would you like the tools, resources and understanding to investigate and break stories on important environmental issues?
Call for Applications
The University of Rhode Island’s Metcalf Institute for Marine & Environmental Reporting is accepting applications for its 20th Annual Science Immersion Workshop for Journalists, June 10-15, 2018. Ten journalists will be awarded fellowships, which include tuition, room and board, and travel support, thanks to the generosity of private donors and Metcalf Institute’s endowment. The application deadline is February 12, 2018.
About the Workshop
The Metcalf Institute Workshop provides journalists with hands-on experience and expertise from leading scientists and policymakers who are working to project the impacts of climate change, identifying adaptation measures, and investigating the most effective ways to communicate these challenges. While focusing on local and regional U.S. examples, the Workshop addresses topics of global significance.
Held at the URI Graduate School of Oceanography, one of the nation’s premier oceanographic research institutions, the workshop provides an intense week of learning in the field, classroom and lecture hall.
The Metcalf Fellowship includes double-occupancy rooming at a nearby Hampton Inn, tuition, and all ground transportation and meals. Travel support paid after the program in the amount of up to US$500 for U.S.-based journalists and up to US$1,000 for internationally-based journalists. Journalists applying from outside the U.S. must provide written assurance that they have full travel funds and can obtain the appropriate visa.
Metcalf Fellows will:
- Receive a comprehensive overview of climate science and global change
- Gain a deeper understanding of how scientists conduct research and handle scientific uncertainty
- Develop the skills and confidence to translate the language of scientific journals for news audiences
- Build confidence in their abilities to discern the credibility of scientific sources
- Board a research vessel to study the impact of rising water temperatures on ecosystems and fish populations
- Visit wetlands, shorelines, and coastal communities to better understand adaptive management efforts and solutions in response to sea level rise and coastal storms
- Gain scientific background on the science of “attribution,” or how extreme weather events are tied to climate change
- Discover new ways to write about climate change to build audience understanding and engagement
- Cultivate new sources by interacting with leading researchers and policy experts in an informal, off-deadline atmosphere
- Network and develop lasting relationships with journalists from around the globe
Metcalf Fellows represent all media types and a wide variety of large and small news organizations ranging from local and regional newspapers and broadcast outlets to online and national/international outlets such as The New York Times, The Verge, Reuters, National Geographic, PRI’s The World, Marketplace, The Associated Press and CNN. Metcalf Institute alumni hail from the U.S. and around the world, including Europe, Latin America, Egypt, India, South Africa, Israel, Pakistan, and China.
Metcalf Institute held its first Workshop in 1999. Over the past twenty years, the Institute has held more than 50 training programs for journalists, helping nearly 800 journalists cover the environment with greater accuracy and nuance.
“I didn’t know how much I didn’t know! From reviewing the basics of climate science to learning about the uncertainty of hurricane prediction models – Metcalf has greatly enhanced my ability to break down complex issues for my audience,” said 2017 Annual Workshop alumna Tegan Wendland, New Orleans Public Radio.
“Not only am I headed back home with a bunch of great story ideas, but the ability to set them against an international background and draw broader connections between issues in my region and the rest of the world.”
“My employer has an array of publications with very different audiences,” said 2017 Workshop alum Daniel Woolfolk of Sightline Media Group. “All of our audience is affected by the environment and I’ve learned to reach each segment in a different way.”
Note for internationally-based journalists
The Workshop focuses on the science and policies underlying globally significant issues from a U.S. perspective. Metcalf Institute receives applications from journalists worldwide. However, due to funding limitations, only two of the ten fellowships will be awarded to journalists based outside of the U.S.
Eligibility (details here)
The Fellowship is designed for early- to mid-career, full-time journalists from all media who are looking to start or expand their coverage of the environment. Applicants must demonstrate a need for training in topics relating to climate change and extreme weather in coastal environments.
Applications for the 2018 Annual Science Immersion Workshop for Journalists must be submitted by February 12, 2018.