The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) has received renewed grant support to welcome a new class of reporters for the Journalists in Aging Fellows Program. The 2023 funders to date include Silver Century Foundation, The John A. Hartford Foundation, Archstone Foundation, and NIHCM Foundation.
Since its founding in 2010, this program has been responsible for more than 800 news stories produced by 217 alumni. It has two goals: to educate journalists about issues in aging, better allowing them to spread a new awareness to general-audience, ethnic, and other minority populations; and to disseminate information about new scientific findings, policy debates, innovations, and evidence-based solutions.
“With the support of our funding partners, the program allows journalists to make invaluable connections to expert sources on aging, to each other, and to their communities,” said Todd Kluss, GSA’s director of communications. “As we equip them to provide accurate, fact-based coverage to diverse audiences, these connections become a key component of improving our lives as we age.”
Kluss co-directs the Journalists in Aging Fellows Program together with Liz Seegert, who serves as program coordinator of the fellowship’s media partner, the Journalists Network on Generations.
“Aging, and all its related components, is a significant, yet still vastly underreported issue,” Seegert said. “As many news organizations struggle with limited resources, this fellowship offers journalists expert insight and support so they can delve deeper into key issues that directly impact their communities.”
The program’s co-founder, Journalists Network on Generations National Coordinator Paul Kleyman, serves as senior advisor and editorial consultant.
As in previous years, half of the fellows will be selected from general-audience media and half from ethnic or other minority media outlets that serve communities within the U.S. Staff and freelance reporters and who are covering or wish to cover issues in aging are eligible to apply.
The program’s in-person activities will bring the fellows to GSA’s 2023 Annual Scientific Meeting, which will take place from November 8 to 12 in Tampa, Florida, with the theme of “Building Bridges > Catalyzing Research > Empowering All Ages.” There the fellows will participate in an exclusive educational workshop, which will showcase demographic trends and research highlights and include discussions with veteran journalists on how to position aging stories in the current media environment.
The fellowship requires reporters to deliver two projects based on current aging research, including a short-initial story and major piece or series in the following months. All applications for the fellowship program will be reviewed by a selection committee of gerontologists and editorial professionals. The criteria will include clarity and originality of proposed in-depth story projects; quality of samples of published or produced work; and high-impact potential of proposals geographically and across different ethnic or racial populations. The application deadline is Friday, July 14.
A continuously updated list of stories from the fellows is available online.
The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation’s oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society — and its 5,500+ members — is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA’s structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society.
The Journalists Network on Generations, founded in 1993, is based in San Francisco. It links to over 1,000 journalists, authors, and producers on issues in aging, and publishes Generations Beat Online News (GBONews.org).