The American Prospect’s Writing Fellows Program offers aspiring journalists the opportunity to spend two years developing their skills with the magazine. The next two positions, including the John Lewis Fellowship, are set to begin in May 2024.
Each fellow benefits from an intensive mentoring program with the experts on our editorial team. The Prospect is looking for candidates with strong writing and analytical abilities who will generate story ideas as well as take assignments. A passion for politics and policy is a prerequisite. Prior journalism experience is encouraged but not required.
The Prospect is committed to elevating diverse voices and supports employees with ongoing career-development opportunities. Members of traditionally underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.
The annual salary for two-year fellowships starts at $46,500 and includes a full range of benefits (health, dental, vision) plus union membership in Washington-Baltimore News Guild (Communication Workers of America). The collective bargaining agreement ensures annual cost of living raises.
The Prospect’s goal is to ensure writing fellows develop the relationships, credibility, quality of writing, and more than enough clips to pursue a career in journalism. Past fellows have gone on to roles at the New York Times, Politico, Vox Media, The Atlantic, Slate, Washington Post, Mother Jones, Daily Beast, and many other publications.
Here’s what recent fellows have to say:
Since joining the Prospect, I have grown as a writer and reporter. I have been able to push my writing, researching, interviewing skills, and creativity to new levels. The Prospect has given me the space to report on important topics such as racial justice, climate change, and environmental equity. I have expanded my political reporting, and come to understand political dynamics in a new way. Between traditional reporting skills and the space to find my niche, working at the Prospect has taught me so much I will be able to rely on in the future. — Ramenda Cyrus, John Lewis Fellow
I joined The American Prospect as an editorial intern in January 2021, and my fellowship ended in December 2023. Looking back, I’m stunned with how I grew as a journalist during that period. From the get-go, executive editor David Dayen’s extensive mentorship taught me how to spot a story, keep pulling at its strings, all through the lens of ideas, politics and power. The pace at which Dayen reports set a standard I aspired to. When I talk with other early-career journalists, I realize how valuable this fellowship has been for my career because it trusted me with doing the sort of original reporting that many other early-career journalists don’t get the opportunity to experience until a few years into their careers. — Jarod Facundo
As a writing fellow, I covered a range of beats, diving into complicated policy and learning the ins and outs of Washington. It’s a crash course in politics and the chance to immerse yourself fully in work you feel good about. As a young reporter, I was trusted and supported to write ambitious stories that mattered and in turn, I’ve seen my work have an impact. — Marcia Brown
Few other early career positions are as focused on supporting young journalists in their reporting, pitching, and broader professional development as the Prospect’s writing fellowship, where in my first year I regularly filed web stories and magazine features, did multiple reporting trips across the country, and attended NABJ’s and IRE’s annual conferences. — Brittany Gibson
The Prospect is a pioneer in nonprofit journalism and a compelling voice for attainable progressive reform. We published our first issue in Spring 1990 as a champion for informed discussion on public policy. Since 2019, the Prospect has doubled our online traffic, increased our annual print issue count to six, expanded into live events, and polished our reputation as a leading source of journalism on the progressive left. Our mission is to broaden our impact without sacrificing integrity, and to continuously fortify our tenacious focus on ideas, politics and power.
Introduce yourself, and briefly answer these three questions:
What magazines, newspapers and websites do you read regularly?
Name your intellectual and political heroes?
Where do you see yourself in five years and why?
A critique of a Prospect story
Choose a published piece and evaluate it for style, clarity, and readability. Tell us if a piece worked well, or if it fell short. Consider balance, voice, as well as presentation.
Three writing samples
Consider clips or posts, academic papers and unpublished pieces — anything that demonstrates your writing style and reporting chops.
Three story ideas
A reported feature or essay;
A piece on an important debate from the world of politics, policy, or ideas; and
Another topic or genre of your choice.
Two professional or academic recommendations
To apply for this job please visit theamericanprospect.submittable.com.