Programs bring interns, newspapers together


Foundation Front
By Karen T. Braeckel

You had your chance.

Every last one of you.

And not one complaint. (Maybe no one read the first one?)

Now you’re stuck, and I have no choice but to follow the leaders – the Foundation president and vice president – who came up with the idea of this monthly column.

And I’ll follow the leader who also fills this space monthly – our HSPA board president Greg Morris. He wrote from Florida last issue. I’m writing before I leave for the Sunshine State (in case I’m lucky enough to get snowed out on the return).

Mamaw will do anything to watch her Miami grandsons play soccer, as long as they both compete the same weekend. The first opportunity happens to be in Naples. (Really a shame!) Wish I had their energy.

In February the HSPA Foundation will observe similar verve in two programs focusing on youth. If you need a lift in your newsroom, heads up. We can help you find enthusiastic, talented journalists. (You caught that transition, right?)

Journalism Job and Career Fair

Students from universities across Indiana and surrounding states will gather Saturday, Feb. 2 at Franklin College for the annual Journalism Job and Career Fair sponsored by the HSPA Foundation and Indiana Associated Press Managing Editors.

The event usually attracts more than 100 students, and editors often hire talent they meet there.

This networking even helps you find interns. We provide a binder of all submitted resumes. You may not have openings now, but you leave with a quick reference when you need to hire.

If you did not register earlier, we can still arrange interviews for you if you sign up by Jan. 18. (Yes, it’s the drop-dead deadline. And you pay a little more.) Visit for more details and to register.

Eugene S. Pulliam Internships

Each summer the HSPA Foundation offers 10 students who attend Indiana colleges and universities or are residents of Indiana a 10-week internship at a newspaper in the state. Interns earn $330 per week, or a total of $3,300 for the summer. The newspaper picks up $33 a week to pay FICA and Medicare – taxes the student cannot recover.

Mark March 1 on your calendar as the deadline to submit your online application. It takes just five minutes.

I encourage all editors interested in hosting an intern to fill out the application – even the year you are not eligible when serving on the selection committee.

The process may seem mysterious. It’s not.

For reading this far, you get the written, transparent version of pairing student and newspaper.

The editors hosting interns the previous year serve on the selection committee as do the two Pulliam mentors for writing and multimedia. At the end of the day, they create a list of the top 10 students and five or so alternates. (We rank the alternates.)

Newspaper assignments always come after intern selection. We review newspaper applications and papers’ number of years applying without receiving an intern. Those with the most unfilled requests rise to the top – the reason to apply every year.

We also check the number of interns the paper received.

We try to place students close to their hometowns or college campuses where they can live. If we relocate a student, we pay a small housing allowance. The newspaper usually helps the intern find something affordable.

Due to budget constraints, we cannot relocate all interns.

Sometimes editors know specific students they want in their newsrooms and ask how they can get Pulliam Internships for them. If you have such an agreement, encourage the student to apply.

Then send me an email with the student’s name and school. We file your request with the student’s application. If the student is selected, we try to accommodate (unless, as some editors say, it’s not your turn).

In 2012, 43 newspapers applied. We usually receive about 50 applications. All but six of the papers hosted at least one intern in the past. Three of the six applied for the first time last year.

We work diligently to keep the process fair while considering the Foundation’s finances and the students’ housing.

Through these programs we enhance your ability to fully educate and inform the public – an important component of the Foundation’s mission.

Karen T. Braeckel is director of the HSPA Foundation. Her column will run in the second issue of each month.