COLLEGE PARK — The Dow Jones News Fund, known for its nationally competitive journalism internship training and placement program, has selected the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism to host a data-driven reporting training camp in June 2024.
The eight-day training will be led by Merrill College Associate Professor Rob Wells and Senior Lecturer Karen Denny, the school’s director of internships and career development. An estimated 12-15 interns will be taught by Merrill College faculty on how to use data to find stories, create data visualizations and produce a list of detailed story proposals so they can get to work immediately at their internships. The interns’ research will be customized to fit the needs of their prospective newsrooms.
The training at Merrill College’s Knight Hall, scheduled for June 1-9, will include sessions on data analysis, basic R, data visualization, mobile video, investigative reporting and business reporting.
Students will get the opportunity to learn from Merrill College’s data journalism industry leaders, such as Sean Mussenden and Derek Willis. Mussenden is the data editor for the college’s award-winning Howard Center for Investigative Journalism. Willis, the college’s lecturer in data and computational journalism, spent 25 years at The New York Times, The Washington Post, ProPublica, The Center for Public Integrity, Congressional Quarterly and The Palm Beach Post before joining Merrill’s faculty.
“Merrill College has perhaps the nation’s deepest and most impressive pool of data journalists on its faculty, and we look forward to sharing their experience and knowledge with the always-promising DJNF interns,” Merrill College Dean Rafael Lorente said. “We are beyond excited to partner with the Dow Jones News Fund, and we look forward to preparing the next generation of data journalists to make a difference in newsrooms across the country.”
The Dow Jones News Fund, founded in 1958, initially provided fellowships for high school journalism teachers but has since expanded to provide early career training, high school student workshops and training for college students in multiplatform editing, digital media, business reporting, audience engagement and data journalism. DJNF's 2023 program trained nearly 100 students to intern in more than 65 newsrooms across the country.
Successful interns pass a news literacy screening test administered by DJNF. They are then matched with newsrooms and must attend a mandatory weeklong training program.
Newsrooms have until Feb. 15 to request a summer intern or have your interns attend the Merrill College training. Interested news organizations should complete this form and select the data option.
Student applications for this year’s program closed in November, and DJNF’s 2025 application will open this fall.
For more information, contact Merrill College Associate Professor Rob Wells at email@example.com.
- Kathy Best, Director, Howard Center for Investigative Journalism
- Josh Davidsburg, Senior Lecturer
- Constance Mitchell Ford, Lecturer
- Adam Marton, Director, Capital News Service Data and Graphics Bureau
- Christoph Mergerson, Assistant Professor
- Sean Mussenden, Data Editor, Howard Center for Investigative Journalism
- Daniel Trielli, Assistant Professor of Media and Democracy
- Derek Willis, Lecturer in Data and Computational Journalism
- Merrill College