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Introducing the Entrepreneurial Journalism Creators Program

  • By Newmark J-School Staff

Applications are now open for a new online certificate program for niche media entrepreneurs at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.

The initiative will advance the school’s mission to prepare news media professionals to thrive in a changing journalism landscape. The program — the school’s first to be online-only — will provide a springboard for niche creators building new ventures to serve their communities.

The first cohort of the three-month Entrepreneurial Journalism Creators Program will start in October 2020. Learning through both asynchronous and live classes, participants — whether independent or employed at media companies — will work on developing niche ventures into sustainable businesses.

They’ll start by identifying opportunities and building an audience. They will craft business models by exploring market needs and potential revenue streams. They will also learn to tell their stories in a compelling way, while assembling a strong network of colleagues, mentors, and collaborators.

“The next journalism era will be driven by independent creators launching local and niche sites, newsletters, podcasts, and YouTube channels,” said program director Jeremy Caplan. “Some will fill news desert gaps and others will revitalize civic engagement in underserved communities. We are excited about supporting them on their path to sustainability.”

“At the Newmark J-School, we are committed to serving journalists at all stages of their career,” said Dean Sarah Bartlett. “With the disruptions in legacy news media and the increasing existence of news deserts, the need to support news media entrepreneurship, especially ventures built and run by journalists of color, is becoming more and more urgent. We are committed  to addressing this with our new program.”

The program is supported by a generous grant from the Facebook Journalism Project. “A thriving future for local news is going to need more entrepreneurs and more people of color to provide the journalism that we all need to live informed lives. We’re thrilled to support the Newmark Journalism School’s Entrepreneurial Journalism Creators Program through this new, vital cohort,” said David Grant, accelerator program manager

Additional scholarships have been provided by LION Publishers,  Substack, and Media Lab Bayern. Read more about the genesis of the program on this Medium post.