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The Next Generation Radio Project

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Credit Next Generation Radio

What is the Next Generation Radio project?

The Next Generation Radio project is a full-scale, digital-first multimedia training project with an emphasis on “radio storytelling.” We are committed to the professional development of undergraduate and graduate students who are focused on journalism.

This project is a collaboration between select journalism schools around the U.S., NPR and NPR member stations. For this project, six students will be competitively selected and get the opportunity to learn from professional multimedia journalists during a week-long program held at NPR station KUT in Austin. This project begins Sunday August 16 and concludes by 6 p.m., Friday, August 21. APPLICATION HERE; more essential information below; check out previous year's reporting projects here and here.

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Previous mentors.

Who are the professional journalists on this project?

Lead Staff: Project Manager, Doug Mitchell (NPR), Adjunct Instructor, Georgetown University; Project Managing Editor, Traci Tong, Senior Producer, PRI's "The World"; Project Technical Adviser, Tom Krymkowski (Independent)

Mentors: Charla Bear, Reporter, KQED San Francisco, Adjunct, San Francisco State University; LaToya Dennis, Reporter, Milwaukee Public Radio; Art Levy, Music Producer, KUTX; Tina Pamintuan, Director Radio/Special Projects, CUNY Graduate School of Journalism; Kelsey Proud, Senior Digital Producer, Saint Louis Public Radio; Jennifer Stayton, ME Host/Reporter, KUT

Next Generation Radio FAQs

When is the deadline? To be considered for this project, you need to apply. Go here to find the application for and to and upload all your materials. The deadline for applications is no later than midnight, Monday, June 1, 2015. That week, a committee will review all completed applications and select students. Students who are selected will be notified by the 5 p.m., Friday, June 5, 2015.

What are the project dates? This project will begin officially Sunday August at 5 p.m. with an informal dinner/meet and greet. Location TBD. Our workspace will be the Belo Center for Media Studies and in the “community room” at NPR station KUT. We will start each day at 9 a.m. We will conclude each day with a debrief at 5:30 p.m. with the goal of leaving our workspace by 6 p.m. This will change as we get through the week, but we will not expect anyone to be working past 7 p.m. We believe it unnecessary to work past 7 p.m. and each team will be encouraged to organize its day accordingly.

Who is eligible? We are looking for graduate or undergraduate students from colleges and universities of Central Texas. Selected students will need to house themselves during the week of the boot camp which takes place the week before classes begin at UT-Austin. Broadly, we want students who have developed an interest in media and storytelling as well as having a fairly strong digital presence. We are partial to but not strictly looking for journalism/broadcast majors. We will be selecting a total of six students for this project.

Who is the target audience for this project? We are committed to the professional development of undergraduate and graduate students who are focused on Journalism and Broadcast Media. “Broadcast” means traditional and/or via the Internet. It’s ok if you have a video background.

But, be ready to produce audio. Mentoring teams will focus on finding one person doing something interesting and building a multimedia project around that person. For this project, we are going to focus on a theme. The plan: In 2014, Austin went from a City Council form of government to one with representatives from Districts. For this project, we’re planning on having each of the six teams pick a district and develop a narrative about that district through the use of audio, video, photos and data. 

Who is a successful applicant? We have an expectation that successful applicants will have demonstrable experiences with digital media, audio storytelling as well as written and/or visual media. We’d like to see applicants who have worked successfully with each form. We have an expectation that successful applicants will have demonstrable experiences in uses of the popular social media content distribution platforms. We have the expectation that successful applicants will be active on social media and demonstrate a level of savvy in how to use it, appropriately. We have an expectation that this project will be diverse. We'll have a diverse leadership/mentoring team and hence we'll expect a diverse collection of selected students. Racial, ethnic, cultural, gender, LGBT, education and economic diversity are areas we consider during our mentor and student selection process. As we create partnerships with public media stations and national media and journalism entities, we are looking to have our training projects represented by students from communities and colleges that are not well represented in our industry.

How should a successful applicant prepare for this project? Selected students need to be ready to work in a way they may never have. They will have a professional journalist seated next to them and out in the field with them, the entire duration of the project. They will need to be ready to learn more in a week than they might during a full semester. We have the expectation that each student will conduct him/herself as a professional journalist who is highly collaborative and respectfully eager to learn and to prove themselves to a strong collection of well-connected people who could be a strong advocate for their future media careers. We will not hesitate to remove a student from this project if his/her conduct is does not comply with accepted professional standards.