Experience has taught us that students learn best by doing. It is as true in Qatar as it is in the United States, where Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism has, for decades, sponsored its famed Journalism Residency program.
For 10 weeks, usually in the third year of study, students leave the campus to work fulltime for, with and alongside veteran journalists or public relations practitioners in professional environments. The goal is for students to get the kinds of hands-on experience that helps them develop new skills, test old skills, work under deadline pressure, hone their news judgment, sharpen their fact-checking and research skills, build confidence in their capabilities and explore new career paths not previously considered.
Our media partners—newspaper/online companies, magazines, broadcast stations and networks, online organizations and marketing communications groups—understand that Journalism Residency is no ordinary internship. It is professional work by students enrolled in Medill’s pre-professional program of study, but it is at the same time a learning experience for which the students earn university credit.
To prepare for success in the Journalism Residency, students must complete with grades of C or higher:
- Enterprise Reporting course (JOUR-301)
- a course linked to the student’s preferred JR industry (e.g. JOUR-321: Magazine and Feature Writing, IMC-331: Public Relations Writing and Strategy, and/or JOUR-323: Broadcast Production and Presentation)
- JOUR-370: Media Law and Ethics
- either JOUR-342: Advanced Online Storytelling or JOUR-368: Documentary
Typically, students will take JOUR-370 and either JOUR-342 or JOUR-368 during an intensive five weeks before leaving for the 10-week Journalism Residency in the spring semester of the junior year.
Students will be invited to submit their preferences for Journalism Residency sites and industries, but the final decision about JR placement will be made by the senior associate dean. The decision will take into account a number of factors, including students’ training, internships, campus journalism and communications-related experiences, interests, career goals, grades and insights from faculty.
While students may not get their top choice of site, they are assured an assignment that will allow them to develop their skills and grow professionally. Students should consider their skill level and experience and the demands of the sites when voicing their preferences for placement.
Sites that have hosted Northwestern University in Qatar students are:
Al Jazeera (Washington, D.C.)
National Geographic TV (Washington, D.C.)
National Geographic magazine (Washington, D.C.)
Qatar Foundation International (Washington, D.C.)
Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting (Washington, D.C.)
Amnesty International media/public relations (Washington, D.C.)
American Bar Association Journal (Chicago)
Content That Works (Chicago)
Catalyst magazine (Chicago)
The Huffington Post (New York City)
Huffington Post Live! (New York City)
AOL.com (New York City)
Financial Times (New York City)
Time magazine (New York City)
Sports Illustrated magazine (New York City)
Condé Nast Traveler magazine (New York City)
Brown Lloyd James strategic communications (New York City)
Fast Company magazine (New York City)
Grayling public relations (London)
Bloomsbury Publishing (London)
Cosmopolitan magazine (London)
Vogue magazine (London)
Fleishman-Hillard public relations (Paris)