Tag Archives: scholarships

AAJA Seattle student summer updates

In today’s recovering job market, I know firsthand as a recent graduate how competitive the news industry has been. So it is great to hear how fellow AAJA Seattle student members are still able to land opportunities in journalism.

Rachel Solomon is a print reporter turned radio broadcast journalist who was recently hired as a morning news producer for 97.3 KIRO FM.

Solomon received a Bachelor’s in Communication from the University of Washington in June where she spent time writing for the college’s student newspaper, The Daily. Her interest in radio led Solomon to produce a monthly This American Life-inspired radio podcat focusing on campus-life.

Her work has ended up in The Seattle Times, National Native News, KUOW, KPLU and KPBCS.

Listen to episodes of Solomon’s program “The Bark & The Bite” online.

Joanna Nolasco snagged an internship this summer at The Oregonian covering Washington County news after spending six months interning for The Seattle Times.

Nolasco was the recipient of the 2011 Northwest Journalists of Color Scholarship. The NJC scholarship program awards students in Washington state demonstrating talent and commitment in journalism.

She has also interned for The Cambodia Daily in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in the summer of 2010.

Nolasco studies Journalism and Political Science at the University of Washington and is expected to graduate in 2012.

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NJC 2011 Scholarship Winners Announced! Blethen honored for diversity commitment.

Posted on by Owen

Congratulations to this year’s NJC scholarship recipients!  On the 25th anniversary of the Northwest Journalists of Color Scholarship, AAJA Seattle was able to award nearly $5,000 in scholarships to help offset the cost of tuition, send a student to the 2011 AAJA national convention in Detroit, and help pay for off-campus multimedia storytelling courses.

(above picture, from left to right) Mary Jean Spadafora, 911 Media Arts Scholarship; Joanna Nolasco, Northwest Journalists of Color Scholarship; Peter Sessum, Founder’s Scholarship; Gina Cole, NJC Scholarship. (not pictured: Katelin Chow, who won an NJC Scholarship, made a special appearance from Barcelona, Spain, via a pre-recorded webcam message)

Seattle Times Publisher and AAJA Platinum member Frank Blethen received a “leadership in diversity” award from AAJA-Seattle and the Seattle Association of Black Journalists.


Frank Blethen accepts Leadership in Diversity Award from NJC



Thanh Tan of the Texas Tribune, as keynote speaker, shared her experiences as a multimedia reporter/producer covering state politics at a non-profit journalism outlet.

The Texas Tribune is a non-profit journalism startup based in Austin that relies on diverse lines of revenue to sustain its hard-hitting reporting on state government and politics.

Here’s an excerpt from Thanh’s amazing keynote speech:

Will we succeed in our mission to be a non-profit, sustainable provider of public interest news? I don’t know. Will I still have a job in a year or two? I sure hope so. When I questioned whether I wanted to venture into the unknown, I leaned on my old Nightline executive producer, Tom Bettag, for help. Here’s what he told me, “As for the future of the Tribune and its model, I don’t think anyone knows. What we know is that it is a serious attempt to do important work. If it fails, it will be a noble failure. People will respect you for having done your best to make it work.”

If you’d told me seven years ago that I would NOT be working in television news. That instead, I’d be producing and writing for an online start-up in Austin, Texas. That I would be a multi-platform journalist– I’d have said, ‘Whatever. Yeah right.’ The bottom is I’ve worked in local TV news in small and big markets. I’ve worked in public broadcasting at a local and national level. All those experiences—the good, the bad, and the ugly… led me to where I am today and make me appreciate what I have so much more. You don’t have to follow my path. Create your own future, and know that it may look nothing like what you’re envisioning right now. But the basics are the same. Just do it. Find that first break. Surround yourself with people who want you to succeed.

Keep in touch with those whose work you admire. Break a few stories. Check your facts. Seek the truth. Hold the powerful accountable. Meet your deadlines. Learn from your mistakes. Survival in this industry may well be based on your ability to adapt your stories for different mediums—so learn all you can about how print, online, and broadcast work. Try new things—but always be mindful of your mission. And know that your job allows you to wield a certain amount of power that should not be abused. Pay attention to the people around you… listen to their stories, and understand that our work as journalists often gives voice to the voiceless. That’s a huge responsibility.

Times are changing for this industry—it is a FASCINATING time to be a journalist, if you do it for the right reasons. You’ve gotten this far. I promise you that with a little help from the Northwest Journalists of Color—and all the people who are around you today– you will go on to produce work that inspires and enlightens your community.

This is just the beginning of your journey, and I am so excited for you.

Thanh Tan and her father, Duc

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Thanh Tan of The Texas Tribune headlines this year’s NJC scholarship reception

Posted on by sbhatt

Thanh Tan

Thanh Tan is the keynote speaker for this year’s Northwest Journalists of Color awards reception, which will be June 7 at KING TV.

Get your free tickets at EventBrite!

The reception, which marks the 25th anniversary of AAJA Seattle’s flagship program, brings Thanh Tan from Austin, Texas, to share her experiences with this year’s scholarship winners.

Tan, a three-time NJC scholarship winner, is a multimedia reporter/producer for The Texas Tribune.

She previously worked at Idaho Public Television, a PBS station that serves a statewide audience.

While there, she was an Emmy award-winning producer/reporter/host for the longest-running legislative public affairs program in the West, Idaho Reports, moderator of The Idaho Debates, and a writer/producer for the flagship series Outdoor Idaho.

Prior to joining IdahoPTV, she was a general assignment reporter at the ABC affiliate in Portland, OR and a political reporter for KBCI-TV in Boise, ID. Her work has also appeared on the PBS NewsHour and This American Life.

She graduated with honors from the University of Southern California with degrees in International Relations and Broadcast Journalism.

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May 2 deadline for Stanford Chen internship grants

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Summer internships are a great way to practice journalism and learn the ins and outs of newsrooms today. Problem is, many internships these days don’t pay — or they don’t pay enough for interns to cover their basic living expenses.

AAJA awards Stanford Chen internship grants to help defray those expenses. The grant provides $1,750 to a college student who is an intern at small- to medium-size media.

This year’s application deadline is May 2. Download an application at aaja.org.

Stanford Chen was a California-born city boy who was introduced to journalism by working on his high school newspaper at Oakland Tech. After graduating with a journalism degree from Indiana University, Stan’s professional career began at The Bellingham, Wash., Herald. From there he moved to the Daily Journal of Commerce, a business publication in Portland, Ore., as its editor before landing at The Oregonian, Oregon’s largest metropolitan daily. Stan could do anything journalistically, and he frequently was ahead of trends: At The Herald he wrote an environmental column, long before the environment became front-page news; he also was the paper’s sports editor, copy editor and photographer. At The Oregonian, he started as a part-time copy editor, soon was hired full time, doing night page makeup, then became deputy editor of the Forum editorial section before returning to his real love, reporting. He remained a reporter even after he was stricken with cancer. He died in 1999 at the age of 51.  (Source: AAJA)

Learn more about Stanford Chen at AAJA.org.

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Celebrate the holidays at all-media party, Dec. 17

The first all-media holiday party is being held on Dec. 17 at Nectar Lounge in Fremont! Reconnect with your friends working in print, television, radio and web journalism. All Puget Sound-based newsrooms staffers and former staffers invited.

Buy your tickets today!

Tickets are $20 in advance and $30 at the door.

All the proceeds benefit the Northwest Journalists of Color scholarship administered by our AAJA Seattle chapter. Since 1985, the NJC scholarship has awarded grants to more than 100 outstanding young journalists. Alumni have gone on to work for The Seattle Times, Seattle magazine, The Los Angeles Times, CBS News, and Sony Pictures, among other places.

The party is hosted by David Boardman, executive editor of The Seattle Times; Sharon Chan, technology reporter at The Times; and Candace Heckman, senior editor for Nyhus Communications.

KING5’s Lori Matsukawa and KIRO Radio’s Bill Radke will emcee. There will be a live DJ and heavy appetizers. Cocktail attire recommended.

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