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Applications Being Accepted for the 2014-2015 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

Contact: Paige Rohe, prohe@emory.edu, 404-420-5129

ATLANTA...Applications from U.S. residents are now being accepted for six one-year journalism fellowships with the Carter Center's Mental Health Program. These fellowships aim to enhance public understanding of mental health issues and reduce stigma and discrimination against people with mental illnesses through balanced and accurate reporting. The deadline for applications is April 14, 2014, and the fellowship recipients will be announced July 11, 2014, on the Center's website, www.cartercenter.org. The 2014-2015 fellowship year begins in September 2014.

"For nearly two decades, Carter Center fellows have accurately and sensitively covered mental health issues around the world, helping communities better understand illnesses that affect so many people," said former First Lady Rosalynn Carter. "Too often we only hear about mental health in the news following a crisis or tragic event. Yet, every day, millions of Americans living with these illnesses go to work, care for their children, and contribute to their communities. They are valuable members of society, and their stories deserve to be told."

Each fellow is awarded a $10,000 stipend and provided with two required expense-paid trips to The Carter Center in September 2014, and again in September 2015, to meet with program staff and advisers.

Fellows also receive access to an exclusive area within the Mental Health Media Forum (www.mentalhealthjournalism.org) to facilitate direct dialogue with current and former fellows on mental health reporting.

Since its establishment in 1996, the program has awarded nearly 150 fellowships. Throughout the history of the program, fellows have produced a considerable amount of content, including books, television mini-or full-length documentaries, hundreds of newspaper, magazine, and online pieces, hundreds of minutes of radio and television airtime, as well as creative and innovative uses of multimedia.

Shedding Light on Issues and Creating Change

Fellows are not required to leave their employment during the fellowship year and are encouraged to undertake timely projects that may educate the public and raise awareness about important mental health issues. Through their reporting, Carter Center fellows have: investigated the use of North Carolina state prisons as de facto psychiatric hospitals; inspired policymakers in a major American city to allocate millions of dollars to address homelessness; and exposed the complex and devastating mental health challenges faced by returning Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.

On several occasions, fellowship projects have been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Multiple fellowship projects have been nominated for regional Emmy Awards, and others have received the Peabody Award, the Edward R. Murrow Award, awards from the Association of Health Care Journalists and American Psychiatric Association, as well as recognition from mental health consumer advocacy organizations such as Mental Health America and the National Alliance for Mental Illness.

How to Apply

The program is open to journalists working in all media forms with a minimum of three years professional experience. Projects are tailored to the experience and interests of the fellows. Fellows are not required to leave their current employment.

Unlike in previous years, the full application now must be completed and submitted online. Interested applicants should submit the following:

  • Resume: The resume should include: a list of representative publications; membership in professional organizations; major journalism prizes; and/or awards and year awarded.
  • Objectives for Fellowship and Project Description: An informal essay not to exceed 1,000 words describing the applicant's professional reasons for applying and how the fellowship would benefit the applicant's body of work.
  • Samples of Professional Work: Up to three examples of the applicant's work may be submitted. At least one of the samples should be in the media form proposed.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Two letters of recommendation from people familiar with the applicant's work should comment on the applicant's abilities and potential as a journalist. Recommenders will be asked to submit their letters online once the applicant has completed the application process, no later than April 28, 2014.
  • Letter of Support: One letter from the applicant's publisher, editor, producer, manager, or director, supporting the application is required. If the applicant is self-employed, the third letter must come from an individual familiar with his or her work. This individual will be asked to submit his or her letter online once the applicant has completed the application process, no later than April 28, 2014.

All application materials must be submitted online by April 14, 2014.

Additional Resources:

Read about previous fellowship projects in our archives section >>

Learn about Rosalynn Carter's more than 40-year career in mental health leadership >>

Direct all application inquiries to:
Rebecca Palpant Shimkets, M.S.
Assistant Director
The Carter Center Mental Health Program
453 Freedom Parkway
Atlanta, GA 30307
Tel: (404) 420-5165
Email: info@mentalheatlhjournalism.org

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"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope."

A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in more than 70 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.

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