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USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism California Health Equity Fellowship 2024

Our California Fellowship is designed to support reporters in the Golden State pursuing ambitious, enterprising projects on overlooked health and health equity issues. You decide what stories need to be told in your community to improve health outcomes and we work to support you. 

Fellows join us for a busy week of in-person training and discussion on the USC Annenberg campus, where they learn from nationally renowned health experts, policy analysts and community health leaders, from top journalists in the field, and from each other. That’s followed by ongoing mentoring and virtual meetings to support Fellows across the finish line. 

Our program places strong emphasis on the ways in which environmental and community conditions can influence how long and how well we live. The program helps fellows craft projects that engage communities from the start, and shares hard-won insights on how to land big projects that deliver maximum impact on the health and well-being of communities.

Aim and Benefits 

Admitted Fellows receive:

  • A $2,000-$10,000 grant to help with reporting costs
  • A week of in-person intensive training
  • Five months of professional mentorship

Fellows also are eligible to apply for five months of professional mentorship in engaged journalism and $1,000-$2,000 to support those creative efforts.


Who is eligible to apply?

  • California-based professional journalists and national correspondents, including freelancers, with California-focused projects. We have accepted reporters in the past across all levels, from the smallest rural newspapers to national outlets. 

Reporting themes we support

We embrace a broad view of health, which doesn’t just happen at doctors' o?ces and hospitals. Health is shaped by our environment — our schools, our neighborhoods and our communities. We strive to admit Fellows whose work reflects that.

Here are a few broad reporting themes we support in Fellowship proposals:

  • Systemic racism and the root causes of health inequities
  • How food insecurity, economic stability and meeting basic needs can influence health and well-being for families or communities
  • How well justice systems, schools or health systems serve families or communities – and who is left out or disproportionately harmed
  • Housing insecurity in California – the scope of the problem and potential solutions
  • Accountability journalism on whether healthcare and social welfare systems are serving populations in need

Interview date, Process and Venue

We give preference to:

  • Applicants who have a minimum of three years of professional journalism experience
  • Reporters pursuing collaborative projects between mainstream and ethnic news outlets

Upcoming fellowship dates:

Fellowship week: March 11-14, 2024

Application Deadline

December 10, 2023 

How to Apply

Interested and qualified? Go to USC Annenberg on to apply

Applications should include:

  • Personal Statement: Tell us about yourself and why you want to participate in the program. 
  • Project Proposal: Provide a description of the project you’re pursuing. Consider these questions: What is your long-term goal for this project? How would you like to see the community or policy benefit from this work? What makes this reporting new or important?
  • Deliverables Statement: Number of stories you’ll be reporting, and tentative story themes or focus, including any multimedia elements you plan to incorporate (photos, video, audio, graphics, etc.).
  • Proposed Budget: Please provide a grant amount requested and a rough breakdown of how you plan to use the funds. 
  • Three samples of your most recent work
  • Editor reference letter and completed Editor Checklist form
  • Resume


For more details visit: USC Center for Health Journalism website.

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