Report for America has picked 30 additional host newsrooms and opened applications for dozens of new reporting and photojournalism positions — with a wide variety of beats, including rural issues.
“We were blown away by the breadth of applications we received, and only wish we had the ability to bring on even more newsrooms this year,” said Kim Kleman, RFA’s senior vice president.
Among newsrooms selected were the twice-weekly Uvalde Leader-News, serving a Texas town still recovering from a school massacre; the Texas Tribune, for coverage of communities in the Permian Basin, a leading oil and gas field; the Acadiana Advocate, for coverage of rural communities in southern Louisiana; the Mississippi Free Press, for coverage of “educational equity across Mississippi;” The People Sentinel of Barnwell, S.C., for coverage of rural communities in the Low Country; WVIA, the public TV station in Scranton, Pa., for coverage of rural governments; WRMA and Virginia Public Media for coverage of rural health care; and the Cape Gazette of Lewes, Del., for coverage of the town of Milford.
With the newsroom selections made, RFA says it is seeking “talented, service-minded reporters and photographers” for a two-year program (with an option for three years) with a wide range of benefits, including training and mentoring. RFA pays half the salary and gives the newsroom three to six candidates to choose from.
RFA President Steven Waldman told the New England Newspaper and Press Association Thursday that a fourth of all slots in the last round went to rural newsrooms. “That is a high
priority for Report for America,” he said, adding that rural America needs more philanthropic interest to back such efforts.