Each of City Bureau’s three Chicago-based Fellowship teams consist of one Team Leader and two Reporters. The reporting teams will pursue a big-picture story idea or investigation, with guidance from City Bureau editors, throughout a 10-week cycle.

This is an excellent opportunity to tackle a complex and/or investigative story that is time- and labor-intensive, with the benefit of a team structure and editorial resources. Reporting groups will conduct research and create an editorial plan that could include producing multiple pieces (text, audio, video, graphic, interactive, etc.) to fully tackle the issue—fellows are encouraged to develop innovative ways to bring the issue to light. City Bureau is committed to community engagement, and fellows may choose to work closely with local groups, host events, or use other techniques in order to maximize input from residents affected by the story topic.

City Bureau fellows will work collaboratively within teams while sharing information, sources and research, etc. All three teams will meet once a week (Wednesdays 6-9 p.m.) for training sessions and to workshop ideas together. Your team will have access to the many resources provided through City Bureau’s staff and professional network, including staff at the Invisible Institute, KnightLab, Smart Chicago Collaborative and various other industry partners. (City Bureau develops training sessions based on the needs of fellows during each cycle.) At the end of each cycle, City Bureau hosts a “Reporting in the Open” open house event where fellows can present their stories to community members with interactive presentations.

In addition to working on stories, each City Bureau team will spend 3 hours per week mentoring young people who are involved in media learning programs. This summer, our youth media partner is Free Spirit Media.

 

Important dates for the Summer 2017 cycle:

May 31 – Applications due at noon (CST)

June 28 – Orientation

July 3 – Cycle begins

July 5 – First fellowship newsroom session

September 6 – Final fellowship newsroom session

TBD (early September) – Summer 2017 Open House

 

Learn more about our Reporter and Team Leader positions below.

If you would like to apply but need an extension due to extenuating circumstances, please contact us ASAP at info@citybureau.org.


REPORTERS

City Bureau Reporters typically have a demonstrated interest in journalism (either through personal projects, previous training/school, internships, etc.), though no professional journalism experience is required. Reporters should be proficient in writing skills, and, more importantly, be chronically inquisitive. Successful City Bureau Reporters are collaborative workers who know how to take the initiative in tackling new reporting challenges. Special consideration will be given to applicants who have worked closely with South and West Side communities.

Reporters are expected to work 12 hours per week and are paid a $1,800 stipend (remitted biweekly) for the following time commitment:

  • one 3-hour day each Wednesday from 6-9 at our Woodlawn newsroom

  • one 3-hour day at a location decided on by your reporting team

  • one 3-hour day mentoring young people at Free Spirit Media

  • 3 hours allotted for additional reporting/work

In addition to the above, Reporters are expected to stay in regular contact with City Bureau staff and fellows via Slack, a group messaging app.

Why should I apply to be a City Bureau Reporter?

The reporting fellowship is a unique opportunity to develop one’s reporting and writing skills, especially for people who are looking to pursue journalism as a professional career. Reporters will leave the fellowship with a better understanding of the industry, improved skills, and published clips (text or other types of stories). We also invite people who are interested in becoming more civically engaged via journalism work to apply to our fellowship.

Click HERE to apply to be a Reporter. (Due May 31)

*If your application advances to the second stage, you will be asked to complete a Writing Test within a few weeks of application.*


TEAM LEADERS

Team Leaders are typically freelance journalists with about five years of reporting experience. Not only are they great reporters and writers, successful Team Leaders must be extremely organized, self-directed, hard-working, with collaborative leadership skills. Special consideration will be given to applicants who have worked closely with South and West Side communities.

Team Leaders will work approximately 15-20 hours per week for the 10-week cycle, and be paid a $3,300 stipend (remitted biweekly) for the following time commitment:

  • one 3-hour day each Wednesday from 6-9 p.m. at our Woodlawn newsroom

  • one 3-hour day at a location decided on by your reporting team

  • one 3-hour day mentoring young people at Free Spirit Media

  • 6-11 hours allotted for additional reporting/work each week

Team Leaders will be expected to assign duties and monitor team progress, as well as stay in regular contact with City Bureau staff and fellows via Slack, a group messaging app.

Why should I apply to be a City Bureau Team Leader?

The City Bureau Team Leader position is a unique opportunity for an experienced freelance journalist to tackle a long-term reporting project, work directly within Chicago communities to report it, and develop editorial management skills.

How do I apply?

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, and City Bureau staff will contact Team Leaders ahead of time to confirm dates. Cycles start in March, July, and October. Team Leaders must pitch an investigation or story package to work on over 10 weeks. City Bureau editors may select an applicant and ask him/her to work on a different story than originally pitched.

What kind of pitches are you looking for?

We cover topics that affect the South and West Sides of Chicago, including but not limited to policing and the criminal justice system, economic and environmental justice, and public health. The pitch should be weighty enough to necessitate 10 weeks of intensive reporting, but narrow enough to produce a final package within that time frame.

We accept pitches for investigations, features/news analyses, service packages, or other content that is relevant to the communities that we serve; we value innovative use of various forms of media. We're accepting pitches and ideas on a wide range of topics (of your choosing) but we're especially interested in local politics, public transportation, water security in the Midwest, environmental health and restorative justice topics for the Summer 2017 reporting cycle.

Click HERE to apply to be a Team Leader. (Due May 31)


 

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