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Welcome to the application for the sixth cohort of the Youth Arts Journalism Initiative. If you are a high schooler attending a New Haven or West Haven public school and have an interest in journalism, read on. Applications are open February 21 through March 17, 2023. 

The mission of the Youth Arts Journalism Initiative (YAJI) is to introduce high schoolers to grassroots journalism through The Arts Paper, the daily publication of the Arts Council of Greater New Haven. Students independently research, report, draft, and publish articles covering the arts, culture, and community in New Haven and the greater New Haven region. Many YAJI alumni stay on as freelance reporters after the program ends.

The next semester starts this April 10-14 with a multi-day "intensive” followed by eight weeks of pitch meetings and 1:1 professional mentorship after school. We ask students to produce between one and four publishable articles over the course of the program. Student pay starts at $100 per article.  In addition, all students receive a $400 stipend for participating in the program. 

The 2023 spring intensive will be held in person Monday through Friday April 10-14 at the Arts Council, 70 Audubon Street in New Haven. 

Your commitment to the program includes:

  • Weekly 1:1 sessions with program mentors
  • Developing story ideas
  • Conducting interviews 
  • Writing publishable articles
  • Ten hours a week to working on articles independently

NOTE: Participation in YAJI is a tremendous time commitment. If you cannot commit at least 10 hours a week to conducting interviews, writing independently and working with mentors to edit and revise your articles, this program may not be for you. In the past, students have underestimated this time commitment and struggled to complete the program. 


Important dates to remember:

March 17, 2023: Application due
March 24, 2023: Applicants notified
March 29, 2023: Applicants accept or decline entry to the program. Waitlist regrets by March 31.
Program begins: April 10, 2023
Program ends: June 30, 2023

Mentors plan to hold the intensive in-person the week of NHPS spring break (April 10-14) (COVID-19 protocol permitting). 

Participants who successfully complete the spring program may be invited to continue writing stories for The Arts Paper as a freelance writer.

For questions, email markeshia@newhavenarts.org or lucy@newhavenarts.org. Fill out the application below to apply.

YAJI Students - 3

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YAJI Funders

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Our sincere thanks to the following foundations, institutions, and local businesses who have and continue to help make YAJI possible!

Interested in supporting YAJI? Contact our Annual Fundraising Manager Mina Khokhar for more information.

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