Terry Harper scholarship deadline approaching!

The Terry Harper scholarship permits a journalist to attend the Excellence in Journalism conference at the society’s expense. Harper was the executive director of SPJ from 2002 until his death from cancer in 2009. Sigma Delta Chi then set up a memorial fund that permits a few journalists to attend EIJ each year.

I am proud to have been one of the two initial recipients of the Terry Harper Scholarship, and it opened up a number of opportunities for me. EIJ is a profoundly useful and reinvigorating experience, with many opportunities for professional development and an excitement and energy that always renews my focus on my work. As a Harper recipient, I met a number of wonderful colleagues and brilliant minds, and was eventually honored with a seat on the Ethics Commission, which has been my passion throughout my career.

The Harper scholarship provides a convention registration, four nights’ stay at the conference hotel (the Sheraton New Orleans), airfare to New Orleans up to $250, and a ticket to the SPJ president’s installation banquet.

To be eligible, you must have been a member of SPJ for at least one year, have contributed to SPJ on the local, regional and/or national level, and have graduated from college (undergrad or grad) at least one year ago.

Applications are due June 5, 2016. The selection of the scholarship winners will be made by the Harper Memorial Scholarship Committee. Applicants will be notified by June 30, 2016.

Wait! You’re a student and thus aren’t eligible? Don’t give up! There are a number of opportunities for students to attend! The Columbia Graduate School of Journalism funds five students each year; and the Robert D.G. Lewis First Amendment Award provides a student with a convention membership and funds toward expenses. And for graduated pros, there’s also the Dori Maynard Diversity Leadership Program. Check out more details here!

In the coming months, there will be messages and posts from SPJ about deadlines for EIJ fellowships and scholarships, including a roommate board that might be a good way to save money. EIJ isn’t cheap, but it’s very much worth the trip!

— Elizabeth Donald

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