WHY IS THE MARY WITHERS RURAL WRITING FELLOWSHIP A “FIRST CHOICE” OPPORTUNITY FOR EMERGING COLLEGIATE JOURNALISTS?

  • In-depth critiques and commentary from journalism’s most talented writers.

  • Innovative alternative to the traditional media internship opportunity allowing for an individual to explore and document while not be constrained by daily deadlines.

  • Exposure of the writer’s work will be widely promoted and seen by top editors and journalists.

  • Immediate immersion into documenting Harrison County, Kentucky WITHOUT the worry of finding housing and paying rent.

  • The writer owns the copyright to the literary work created during the time in Harrison County.

  • The words and stories become part of the larger historical archive documenting this single community and continuing for many years to come.


THE FAQ's

Margaret Heltzel - 2019 Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow

Margaret Heltzel - 2019 Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow

Boyd’s Station’s Project 306.36 will award the 2020 Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship to a current college student or recent graduate with a talent for reporting and writing to provide an exciting and demanding journalism fellowship program.

Students must complete the online application which will open for submissions on December 1, 2019. Submissions must include a link to FIVE writing examples (5 examples MAX) and resume. 

The Boyd’s Station’s 306.36 selection committee will review all of the applicants following the DEADLINE of February 5, 2020.

The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship recipient will be announced no later than Feb. 15, 2020.


IS THERE A FEE TO APPLY?

There is NO fee to apply but a candidate must be a current student working towards a degree or a VERY recent graduate and 21 years of age or older while participating in the program. You can be 20 years of age to apply but must be 21 during the fellowship period in 2019.

WHY SHOULD I APPLY FOR THIS JOURNALISM FELLOWSHIP?

The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow will partner with the Reinke Grant For Visual Storytelling photographers for 12-weeks seeking the voice and story of Harrison County. The fellowship will bring the writer and two photographers together to collaborate on stories as well as allowing the Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow the place, time and mentorship to write and expand ideas into essays, journalistic pieces and other literary works. 

In addition to the Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship, Boyd’s Station awards the REINKE GRANT FOR VISUAL STORYTELLING annually to student documentary photographers to work as part of the 306.36 VISUAL DOCUMENTARY PROJECT providing for a 12-week intensive documentary opportunity to photograph the people and culture of Harrison County, Kentucky.

AM I QUALIFIED FOR THIS JOURNALISM FELLOWSHIP?

College juniors, seniors and graduate students, 21 years of age at the time of the fellowship and older, enrolled in a journalism or related degree program or VERY recent graduates are eligible. Previous newspaper journalism internships and/or experience as a journalist on a college newspaper are preferred.

You need to be committed to a career in journalism, teaching journalism and journalistic writing.

You must have reliable transportation. Housing will be provided in a home in Boyd, Kentucky shared with the Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling recipients.

WHAT IS THE DEADLINE TO APPLY?

 All application materials must be submitted by Feb. 5, 2020.

WHEN SHOULD THE RECIPIENT BE IN HARRISON COUNTY?

This will be a coordinated fellowship along with the Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling recipients for a 12 week duration between dates that will be determined to start in sometime between May through August 2020.

WHAT WILL THE MARY WITHERS RURAL WRITING FELLOW LEARN?

This project is geared towards documenting the people and places of Harrison County, Kentucky. At the beginning of the fellowship period, Boyd’s Station will ask the fellow to write a brief outline of what they hope to accomplish and then, Boyd’s Station will help the fellowship recipient along toward those stated goals.

The Boyd’s Station 306.36 Visual Documentary & Writing Project has a large community of successful documentary photographer and journalists who are the best in the world and are committed to seeing the writer and photographers strive and succeed. What might be the most unique thing about The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship is that while in Harrison County, the fellow will have numerous one-on-on personal and virtual critiques of their work with different respected mentors from the journalism community.

WHAT WILL THIS COST THE WRITER?

The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship recipient will be provided a RENT-FREE furnished bedroom in a sponsored home shared with the Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling photographers in Boyd, Kentucky located in the northern portion of Harrison County during the 3-month long grant period plus stipends to cover some living costs and program expenses. There is NO tuition required.

Once awarded, the fellowship recipient will be responsible for travel expenses to Harrison County.

  • The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow will be provided FREE housing.

  • The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow will receive a monthly stipend.

  • The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow will receive fuel reimbursements.

  • The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow will be responsible for their own meals during the program.

  • The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow will be responsible for their own computer.

  • The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow must have reliable transportation and a valid driver license and insurance.

WHAT KIND OF HOURS WILL THE WRITER BE WORKING

The fellowship period is a consecutive 12 weeks in duration scheduled between the months of May and September. The Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellow must commit to spending the duration of that 3-month time period working in Harrison County. The work hours are flexible and up to the fellowship recipient. With some exceptions, the writer can and will set their own schedule. This is not a traditional internship where a writer will work a shift and clock out. Hopefully, a motivated candidate will realize what a unique opportunity it is to have 12 weeks of uninterrupted time to document a lively, rural American community well off the beaten path. 

WHAT ABOUT COLLEGE CREDIT?

If a recipient is enrolled in a college that requires an internship/fellowship program, Boyd’s Station is happy to cooperate with its needs and requirements of the fellowship recipient's school in order to help the photographer earn college credit for their experience during Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship and the 306.36 Visual Documentary & Writing Project.

WHAT DOES THE MARY WITHERS RURAL WRITING FELLOW NEED TO BRING TO HARRISON COUNTY?

If you are selected for the fellowship, you will need the following: 

  • Reliable transportation and valid driver license

  • Personal computer

  • Personal and necessary photography and audio recording equipment (if desired)

  • Personal insurance including auto and health (recommended)

WHO WILL MANAGE WHAT THE FELLOWSHIP RECIPIENT DOES?

This fellowship is unique in that there will be no full-time staff running the program directly from Harrison County. This is why it is imperative that any candidate must be a self-starter and willing to develop and manage their own ideas or concepts successfully seeing those ideas into fruitful assignments on their own and with the Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling recipients.

USA TODAY reporter Alan Gomez, who servers as the director of the Boyd’s Station, Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship will work closely with the Mary Withers Fellow mentoring and editing work during the duration of the fellowship.

Boyd's Station Project 306.36 director Jasper Colt, a video journalist at USA TODAY based in McLean, VA and Boyd's Station executive director Jack Gruber will also involved in the success of the Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowship. Jack and Jasper will be available anytime via phone to answer questions or offer advice to the writer and will be checking in with the fellow and recipients weekly to help or offer assistance in any way.

WHO OWNS THE COPYRIGHT TO THE WORK CREATED?

The WRITER. One of the unique things about this fellowship different from other traditional media internships will be any and all work created by the writer will be owned and copyright retained personally by that student. The writer has the right to market or sell any of the literary work for personal gain editorially or commercially as long as the work and images sold commercially have proper documentation and release from subjects.

Mary Withers Rural Writing Fellowships and Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling photographers, in addition to how the fellow and grant recipients determines personally how to archive the images and work produced during the grant period, agrees that writing and images in total (selects and outtakes) produced during the Boyd’s Station 306.36 Visual Documentary & Writing Program will be gathered, stored and archived in a specific and exact manner determined and funded by Boyd’s Station.

The complete collection of words, creative works and images produced during the fellowship and grant period DO become part of the overall historical archive and collection of the Boyd's Station 306.36 Visual Documentary & Writing Program and the writers and photographer grant Boyd's Station the right, in perpetuity, to use any of the work created during the fellowship and grant period in promotion, exhibits and for educational purposes determined by Boyd’s Station without compensation. Boyd’s Station agrees not to sell or provide creative works or images for commercial gain without the express consent and agreement of the grant photographer. 


MARY WITHERS

BOYD'S STATION | FOUNDING BOARD OF DIRECTOR 

Mary Elizabeth Withers, 69, passed away on Sunday, March 11, 2018, at her home in Boyd, Kentucky.  A life-long Harrison County resident, Mary was instrumental in the founding of Boyd’s Station serving as one of the founding board of directors. Mary was a passionate supporter of the historic Boyd Methodist Church, the arts, education and Harrison County, Kentucky. 

She is truly missed.


QUESTONS

Please contact Jack Gruber at jack@boydsstation.com with any questions or comments regarding the applications process or general information regarding The Reinke Grant for Visual Storytelling.