Apply for Voices 2020

The 2020 Voices program will take place July 26 – August 1 during the week of the 2020 AAJA National Convention in Washington, DC. All selected participants must be available for travel (from within the U.S.) during those dates. The deadline to apply is Sunday, March 29 at 11:59 PM PST. 




Now in its 30th year, Voices is an all-expenses-paid student fellowship program that provides aspiring journalists with career-ready skills to succeed in the continually-evolving media landscape. At its core, the program’s mission is to help a diverse group of aspiring journalists understand how audiences engage with them, how communities view the work they produce, and how they can understand the impact their work has. By nurturing relationships between students and professional volunteers, Voices also gives students the opportunity to tap into mentors’ networks and begin their own. 

This program is open to undergraduate and graduate students interested in journalism. We are looking for students who are interested in spending the summer producing a long-form, in-depth news project over the course of the summer. We want students who are excellent storytellers and who are interested in new technologies and story forms. Reporters, social media strategists, designers, developers, data engineers, podcasters, broadcasters, bloggers are all welcome to apply.

The program this year will consist of remote summer-long training and project work that begins in May and culminates in-person in DC for the AAJA National Convention from Sunday, July 26 to Sunday, August 2. 

As a Voices fellow, students will have the opportunity to: 

  • To create meaningful editorial work by working with student groups to pitch and produce a long-form story in one of five concentrations. 
  • To attend 10 remote trainings throughout the summer led by some of our industry’s leaders.  
  • To build lasting relationships not only with their editors but other AAJA professionals
  • To be a part of the AAJA National Convention not only as attendees, but as presenters. 
  • To meet and interview with recruiters from major news companies 

The story concentrations this year will be: 

  1. Investigative reporting
  2. Features
  3. Audio
  4. Short documentary
  5. Other: If you have another idea or concentration you are dying to pitch, here is your chance. We cannot guarantee we can support this, but we want to know what you would do if you have the resources at hand. Previous pitches included a VR storytelling project, and a news app leveraging artificial intelligence. 

Our fellows from last year’s class have gone onto internships and jobs at news companies such as the New York Times, the Washington Post, Frontline, and more.  Former Voices students and editors have become Pulitzer Prize-winners, documentarians, public relations professionals, broadcast anchors and newsroom editors. Above all, Voices is a community that lasts far beyond this one summer, a community that students will be a part of for a lifetime. 



  • Applicants must have a strong commitment to AAJA’s mission.
  • Applicants do not have to identify as Asian/Asian-American to apply.
  • Applicants must be accepted into or enrolled as a part/full-time college or graduate student or recent graduate (within one year) with a serious interest in pursuing journalism as a career.
  • Applicants must be available during AAJA’s 2020 National Convention in DC the week of July 26-August 1, 2019. There will be additional preparations during the summer.
  • Applicants must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Applicants must not be a former participant in any AAJA Voices or college student projects with similar journalism organizations.
  • AAJA membership is not required to apply; however, accepted students will have to sign up for student membership.



Before you begin, please make sure you gather all of the information you will need. You will not be able to submit your application without:

  • A letter of recommendation from a supervisor at a journalism internship, a journalism publication advisor or college professor (PDF or JPG only).
  • Three short essays answering the questions below
    • What is one thing you are exceptionally good at, and how does it affect your journalism work at risk?
    • What is one thing you need to improve, and how does it put your journalism work at risk?
    • Other than diversity in hiring and coverage, what is one thing that you think our industry needs to improve or be better at?
  • Your best work samples/portfolio.
  • Your resume





Voices is a rare opportunity for college students to develop multimedia and reporting skills in the company of industry professionals from all over the world. Just as newsrooms across the country are adjusting to smaller staffing and new technology, the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) has redesigned its student convention program to simulate the convergence newsroom of tomorrow. This innovative opportunity trains students and professionals before and during AAJA’s annual convention.

Written stories, videos, podcasts and digital content will appear on the Voices website. Learn more about Voices and past participants!



Please contact AAJA Program Associate Daniel Garcia at with questions.

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