Ten Days Left to Apply for a 2011 Authentic Journalism Scholarship

By Al Giordano

A moment from the 2010 School of Authentic Journalism in Mérida, Yucatán, México: Jim Lawson, right-hand strategist for the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., meets legendary Mexican journalist Mario Menéndez Rodríguez and his family, prior to a plenary session of the School. DR 2010 Noah Friedman-Rudovsky.

The door is still open, but it will close on Sunday, January 23, at 11:59 p.m. (Pacific Time).

That’s when completed applications are due to be eligible for one of 40 scholarships to attend the Narco News School of Authentic Journalism, May 11-21, in Mexico City and environs. This ten-day intensive training program is open to anyone of any age (previous scholars have aged from 17 to 65), from any land, as long as you are fluent in either English or Spanish. You can read more about this unparalleled program, its faculty, and curriculum, at this link.

We have so far received requests for applications, as always, from throughout the Americas, from Canada to Cono Sur. We’re also seeing more and more this year from Africa, Asia, Europe and Australia (we’re especially impressed by the quantity of requests this year from Northern Africa, the Middle East and Mediterranean Europe, as our newspaper, which reports mainly events in the Western Hemisphere, was not very well known in that part of the word until apparently recently). It’s clear that the hunger and thirst for a more authentic journalism to replace the commercial media has become global. And we’re doing our best to meet the challenge.

This will be the fourth School of Authentic Journalism. Here’s how it works: Nobody pays tuition. Scholars receive training in online reporting, investigative journalism, viral video production and, this year’s theme, Movement Strategies for Journalists, because reporters that understand the underlying strategic dynamics of how political and social change is made are better, and more accurate, journalists when it comes to reporting those stories.

Scholarship recipients that wouldn’t otherwise be able to attend are also helped with their travel costs, food and lodging. We’re not looking for participants – like too many other “educational institutions” – on the basis of their ability to pay, or whether they’ve attended elite universities, or, frankly, any college at all. To the contrary, we seek you out on the criteria of your work ethic, talent, social conscience, and our sense of whether you’ll keep doing the important work of authentic journalism after the school session is over.

Nothing is so satisfying to us than to watch our graduates out in the world doing good work daily, whether its Ansel Herz, still in Haiti one year after he was caught in the earthquake there, continuing to offer the beacon light of truthful reporting that the international commercial media has abandoned in that land. Or Katie Halper, exposing the hypocrisies in US politics with insight and humor, like Ansel she’s a graduate of the class of 2010. And speaking of good humor, documentary and viral video filmmaker Greg Berger (class of 2004, now a professor at the j-school; his most recent work to go viral is the Spring Breakers Without Borders video, which educates about the drug war in Mexico as it parodies its root causes and consequences) has written you a letter today asking your support to keep the School and Narco News alive. Like many graduates, he’s become an important part of our year-round team. And it’s of course very inspiring to see the role that Natalia Viana, in Sao Paulo, Brazil (class of 2004, also a professor, now), has taken on in becoming the go-to journalist on all matters surrounding the storm around WikiLeaks and the defense of its press freedom.

I could go on and on singing the praises of so many who have come through the School of Authentic Journalism program. And I’ll probably be doing that for the rest of my life, because every generation of j-school graduates excels and advances and builds upon the successes of its predecessors. It’s a school that also builds leadership, as many of the graduates return to teach what they’ve learned to newer students.

And so, if you’ve thought about applying for the School yourself, or know someone who you think should apply, this is a reminder that you have ten days left to obtain and complete your application. These are ten days that, depending on whether you do it or not, can open many, many doors to you and your work, and open new doors for all of us, to be able to count with you as part of our growing international network of Mutual Aid among independent and authentic journalists. It’s a long application, so don’t dawdle: It’s not the kind of thing you can “phone in” at the eleventh hour. It’s a different kind of application, for a different kind of School that seeks a different kind of student and journalist.

For an English language application, write to app11@narconews.com. For a Spanish language application, write to sol11@narconews.com. Get it done by deadline, January 23: these are ten days that could shake your world.


The Faces of Journalism

Thanks for the reminder about the J-School application deadline. 

The ritual of application is challenging.  Dawdling aka procrastination may be what's up with me. 

Maybe I just want to free up the scholarship for some one else with more to offer the world through their words.  That's how I was feeling before this reminder from Al. 

Katie, Greg, Don Andres, Bill, Erin et al inspire me to apply.  Fellow Field Folks, apply.  We need more Authentic Journalism for US!

Of course, as a Co-Publisher of this fine publication, I'm all in with my $$ support.  Whether I physically go or not, I'm part of Shaking the World via Authentic Journalism and its School.

I apply for the school as an exercise towards figuring out what is the best use of my time, with the talents I have, that will help the most people live with basic care and dignity. 

And I'm getting old. 

There are so many ways to tell a story. 

Lots of places.  Many faces.

OT. Luis Posada Carriles on trial

Completely OT:

I just realized that Luis Posada Carriles is finally under trial in the US, including an accusation of having lied about his terrorist past.


Some people seem to go apoplectic about the idea that it might not be ok to send terrorists exploding civil airplanes of a country the US has disagreements with.


hat tip: booman tribune

Authentic Journalism Scholarship

I am delighted to know about this training through a friend and colleague of mine .With what i have read i am sure if i take part in this training i will enrich my academic strength .I a looking forward to taking part in the training 

Application for Authentic Journalism Schorlaship

Great. I feel, as you read my comment, I am in Mexico undergoing the ten-days intensive training. I have acquired a great deal o theory and concept in  my university career in the Mass Communication department, but what was lacking is the pragmatic type journalism, which could enable me face the challenges of [on the groung journalism]

However, I reside in the corner part of the globe- West Africa- in a develo[ping country that is coming out of the heat of civil war-Sierra Leone.

It would be a great learning opportunity that  awaits me over there to colour my journalism here as I work for the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation. 

That's an exciting opportunity

Thank you for the reminder.

However, it is an opportunity impossible to forget about!

Very happy to see that applicants from Europe are also welcome.

Since our region, especially its Post-Soviet part, faces many similar problems (drug policy that contradicts human rights, law enforcement authorities pressure on NGOs and journalists, extreme level of corruption, government’s attempts to establish control over independent media and so on), the information and best practices exchange seems to be vitally needed.

I am sure that ideas and approaches of the authentic journalism being introduced and spread in our country, can make difference in this part of the world, as well as they did in your hemisphere!

A niece and uncle... pen.

What say we to a compelling invitation...

Through the past few years I've hardly said anything specific about myself and though you know very little of me, you're well read on the essential, distorted still by the drumbeat of prose, "short-waved" still by belated poetry. I've tried to hang the rhythm of the tapestry wandering prose on the hush of the inner ear, the prime receptacle of my written word. For the music of the sphere tells all, ...hides naught. Read my inkling lips, trust your tingling ears, ...behold our rounding sway, for thrusted we have upon our "nexts" of kin ...much atonal duplicity.

What say I to a compelling invitation...

I'm oooold, ...old enough i'd say; aching, ... my butt is, but my "righting writeous" hand's not; weather's hot too, ...typo, sorry,  ought to! Nothing to learn, ... that... is a Parisian idiom, Bernard mon ami ...oops; nothing to teach, ...hmmmm, ...see! There is  ...and I have ...and I do! Sedentary, ... as a Hockey Puck I keep moving my feet; inconsistent, ...as a Sitting Duck I keep moving my feet, ...ever so slightly kidding here! Loath being a foreigner, ...well I'm no foreigner to me, am I? Locals, ...I know what it's like, been one since birth; ... ancient, ...barely, barely old enough I say...!

What says she to a compelling invitation...

"Mon oncle, will surely claim my niece, I sure have social awareness ...that's my trade; and by God not liable to a trade-off from me! Just... too busy with kids and all, beside I've been working feverishly, on and off admittedly, on this useless PHD of mine. Political Science has nothing to do with Journalism; anyhow I've never done field work before! What's in it for me money and career wise other than feeding story lines to no-name media for next to nothing!?...
...I'm smart, will she modestly acknowledge, and notwithstanding American Imperialism, Zionism ...and sundry, open minded and socially progressive. And I'm no sycophant of leftist dictators either. True that activism can be fulfilling in itself, but so can raising a family be. What about my husband and his teaching career? I'm a scholar not a dreamer, you know that "mon oncle", beside... American English is but a second all too Busch-like language to me..."

And so I give myself a year to strip her story line of its self-fulfilling prophecy. She's always been more cause than effect, born starry eyes for good down-to-earth community organizing. Inquisitive, stubborn, idealistic, honest, engaging, and ...sitting squarely and comfortably on it; a leading lady drifting toward evanescence... in the sourly role of a misfit. We'll get rid of the mitigating factors yet, and proceed from shallow diatribe intellectualism onward to deeply rewarding field Journalism. With some firebrand assistance from one of the best uncle money can't buy...

...and luck, for... tune to my niece I have yet to sing!

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About Al Giordano


Publisher, Narco News.

Reporting on the United States at The Field.

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