Trainee Program for journalists in exile and journalists with immigrant background

Trainee Program for journalists in exile and journalists with immigrant background

Opening Doors For Exiled Journalists and Journalists With Immigrant Backgrounds

June 8, 2016

What do we really know about migrants or immigrants? Many of the notions and misconceptions that we have about immigrants and their families are shaped by the mass media. This holds especially true for refugees, with whom most people have very little direct contact. This makes it all the more important that media coverage on topics such as refugees, migration, and questions of asylum should be sensitive and balanced.

Journalism of diversity, particularly coverage of religion and ethnicity, requires an understanding of subjects and contexts that journalists with own immigrant backgrounds often have easier access to. Yet Journalists with immigrant backgrounds are still greatly underrepresented in the German media and young people of colour wishing to enter the field of journalism encounter much higher hurdles than their “all white German” peers. The potential of refugee and exiled journalists who have fled to Germany is also seldom recognised. These journalists, however, can offer far better insights into certain subjects, especially when it comes to reporting on stories from their countries of origin.

This is why the new NdM training programme is directed at young German journalists with immigrant backgrounds and exiled journalists. The 12 month training programme will help 50 candidates – 25 young journalists and 25 exiled journalists – to gain access to major German media houses. During the 12 month programme, each trainee will receive professional guidance by a mentor or a tandem partner. Whilst the programme aims at benefiting both the candidates and the participating media partners, the objective is to qualify the candidates in various relevant areas and to help them build professional networks, which, hopefully, will eventually lead them to jobs in the media.

The trainees gain insights into the daily schedules and working methods of editorial offices and established editors, journalists and editorial departments can also profit from new and different perspectives. At the end of the trainee programme, candidates and their mentors and/or tandem partners will be expected to maintain contact for at least a year. This will help mentors to continue to guide candidates and direct them to jobs in the media. This new trainee programme follows our successful mentoring programme, with which we have paved the way of over 120 young journalists into the media since 2010.

The 12 month (non-full-time) course will include

  • Training courses for young journalists (encompassing a variety of subjects such as gaining experience in daily editorial work, learning how to research topics and to market one’s work, etc.)
  • Training courses for refugee journalists (to familiarise them with the German media and media laws, to offer relevant professional information, etc.)
  • Visits to editorial offices and meetings with members of the media
  • A forum for exiled journalists and German journalists to exchange stories and research topics to enhance collaboration in cooperation with the hostwriter journalist network
  • Internships and work experience placements
  • Networking events for journalists in exile, young journalists and their mentors and tandem partners
  • A cross-media project with contributions from all trainees and in collaboration with a major online news platform
  • A graduation film made under the supervision of NDM in which the trainees are given the chance to evaluate the programme
  • At the end of the programme, a reception will be held in the Bundeskanzleramt for all participants and partners of the programme
  • Please note: The programme is not a full-time program. So employees, freelancers and students have the chance to participate as well.

Requirements and How to Apply

  • You will need to have some previous experience in journalism / be a student of journalism / have worked as a journalist
  • Exiled journalists must be officially registered in Germany for at least three months
  • You must have an immigrant background
  • You must include a letter of motivation (max. 1 page)
  • You must attach your current CV
  • You must complete the application form
  • You must include a digital portrait picture (in JPEG format)
  • You must have serious intentions of establishing a foothold in the field of journalism

The programme is supported by “hostwriter” a non-profit network connecting journalists around the world and “Reporter ohne Grenzen”, a global network of journalists advocating freedom of the press.

You can find detailed information on the trainee programme here: long description (PDF). A shorter version is available here: short overview (PDF).

Don’t hesitate to contact us, if you have questions concerning the traineeship.