The New York Times began its summer internship programwith 13 interns on June 1, but none is African American.
"We have several people of color this year but no African Americans, unfortunately," Senior Editor Dana Canedy told Journal-isms. "One we wanted had already accepted another internship and another had just graduated and was offered a fulltime job. What we really need is a deeper pool of candidates. Of about 600 applications for this summer I estimate that we had only about two dozen African American candidates. I intend to reach out to HBCUs for next summer to try to increase the numbers who apply," she said in a reference to historically black colleges and universities.
The Times' 10-week internship program is offered to college seniors and graduate students who have decided on careers in journalism. The reporting interns in New York are called theJames Reston Reporting Fellows, after the late columnist and Washington correspondent.
(A program intended to advance diversity, its 1998 class included fabricator Jayson Blair and a colleague whose work he later plagiarized, Macarena Hernandez.)
"Interns are assigned to various news departments, typically, metro, education, business and sports. They get reporting assignments and bylines on their stories. The internship includes four days in Washington, D.C., on a behind-the-scenes tour of the capital and the Washington bureau," the Times says.
The visual journalism program, covering graphics, art design, page design and photography, is called the Thomas Morgan Internship, named after the former New York Times reporter who was 1989-91 president of the National Association of Black Journalists.
The copy editing internship program is coordinated through the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund Copy Editing program.
In another flagging indicator of African American participation in competitive journalism programs, only two black journalists were picked among the fellowship programs for mid-career journalists this year at Harvard, Stanford and the University of Michigan. The number of African American applicants declined by five.
The John S. Knight Fellowship Program at Stanford University saw nine African American applicants of 133 total, or 6.7 percent, Program Director James Bettinger said; last year there were 14 African American applicants out of 166, or 8.5 percent. The applicants to the Nieman program at Harvard and the Knight-Wallace program at Michigan were about the same as last year, their directors said. (Sixteen vs. 15 at Nieman and 10 vs.
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