National Press Club Scholarship Opportunities

Student journalists, like their professional colleagues, dedicate themselves to covering their communities across platforms. Juggling classwork, part-time work, and journalism activities can often go without reward. The National Press Club and NPC Journalism Institute are proud to administer four scholarships honoring promising future journalists serving their communities.

The National Press Club and the Journalism Institute are currently accepting applications for:

The Scholarship for Journalism Diversity Honoring Julie Schoo

The Scholarship for Journalism Diversity Honoring Julie Schoo consists of a $5,000 one-year scholarship. The purpose of the scholarship, named for the former executive director of the National Press Club Journalism institute, is to recruit promising future journalists who will bring diversity to American journalism. The award can be renewed up to three years, for a total of $20,000 toward educational expenses.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • be a high school senior in the process of applying for admission to an accredited college or university in the U.S.
  • have a 3.0 grade-point average or higher
  • plan to pursue a career in journalism

Students do not need to be a U.S. citizen to apply for this scholarship.

Applications for this award are due February 15, 2023.

The Richard G. Zimmerman Scholarship

The Richard G. Zimmerman Scholarship is named for a long-time National Press Club member who died in 2008 and endowed a scholarship in aid of high school seniors who wish to pursue a career in journalism. Recipients receive a one-time scholarship of $5,000.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • be a high school senior in the process of applying for admission to an accredited college or university in the U.S.
  • have a 3.0 grade-point average or higher
  • plan to pursue a career in journalism

Students do not need to be a U.S. citizen to apply for this scholarship.

Applications for this award are due February 15, 2023.

The Wes Vernon Broadcast Scholarship

The Wes Vernon Broadcast Scholarship, established in 2021, supports diversity within the field of broadcast journalism while honoring longtime radio journalist Wes Vernon, a former National Press Club member. The scholarship provides $5,000 annually to a student who demonstrates a commitment to a career in broadcast journalism. The award can be renewed up to three years, for a total of $20,000 toward educational expenses.

To be eligible, students must:

  • plan to pursue a career in broadcast journalism
  • be enrolled in, or in the process of applying for, admission to a broadcast journalism program at an accredited university or community college in the U.S.

The award is open to any student at any stage in their career pursuing a degree in broadcast journalism. Preference is given to those students enrolled in community colleges, as outlined by the scholarship donor.

Students do not need to be a U.S. citizen to apply for this scholarship.

Applications for this award are due February 15, 2023.

The Dennis and Shirley Feldman Fellowship

The Dennis and Shirley Feldman Fellowship recognizes a student pursuing graduate studies in journalism with a one-time stipend of $5,000 to help defray tuition costs.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • be enrolled in, or in the process of applying for, admission to an accredited graduate program in journalism in the U.S.
  • plan to pursue a career in journalism
  • be a U.S. citizen

Applicants are not required to have published journalism work samples but should be prepared to demonstrate strong writing skills and commitment to the field. See application for details.

Applications for this award are due April 15, 2023.

The Lewis Scholarship

Applications for the Spring 2023 Lewis Scholarship are closed. Summer 2023 applications will open in early 2023.

The Lewis Scholarship will provide free housing and a monthly stipend to support student journalists of color who plan to intern at news media outlets in Washington, D.C., beginning in 2023. 

The Lewis Scholarship has an estimated value of $10,000 and will be awarded to one undergraduate student journalist of color each fall, spring, and summer semester. The scholarship will provide a stipend of $1,000 per month and free housing provided through Washington Intern Student Housing for the duration of the student’s internship, usually four months. 

To be eligible, an applicant must:

  • Be a currently enrolled college student of color in their third or fourth year of undergraduate study who is at least 18 years of age. (Graduating seniors may apply for this scholarship if their internship takes place in the semester immediately following graduation.)
  • Be enrolled in online classes at their college or university during their time in Washington, D.C. Recent graduates need not be enrolled nor would recipients of scholarships during the summer months. 
  • Have a 3.0 grade-point average or higher.
  • Independently secure an on-site journalism internship in Washington, D.C. to take place during the semester they would receive the scholarship. (We strongly encourage applicants to submit their materials for the Lewis Scholarship at the same time they are applying for internships, rather than wait until they receive an internship notification. Institute staff will verify the applicant’s internship status as part of our review.)
  • Provide a letter or email of acceptance showing they have secured an on-site journalism internship in Washington, D.C., to take place during the semester they would receive the scholarship. (This is not needed at the time of application.)
  • Plan to pursue a career in journalism.

Students do not need to be a U.S. citizen to apply but must attend an accredited college or university in the U.S. for this scholarship.

We strongly encourage applicants to submit their materials for the Lewis Scholarship at the same time they are applying for internships, rather than wait until they receive an internship notification. Institute staff will verify your internship status.

The 2022 scholarship winners are:

Wes Vernon Broadcast Scholarship: Anissa Carby of Miami Gardens, Florida

Dennis and Shirley Feldman Fellowship: Sean Cummings of Portland, Oregon

The Scholarship for Journalism Diversity Honoring Julie Schoo: Kyla McGhee of Raleigh, North Carolina

Richard G. Zimmerman Scholarship: Katrina Machetta of Houston, Texas

For a list of previous winners, click here.

“Since 2018, I’ve watched my writing, reporting, pitching and story sense improve in tenfold. … Now in my second to last semester before graduation, I’ve landed a role as Culture Editor for Vox Magazine, Columbia’s city magazine. Next year, I plan to move to Nashville and focus on the arts and culture journalism I’ve come to love in my time at the Missouri School of Journalism. None of this could have come without the help of the Press Club.”

Tony Madden, University of Missouri student and 2018 recipient of the Scholarship for Journalism Diversity Honoring Julie Schoo

Your tax-deductible donation today can support the student journalists who will lead the industry into tomorrow. Please visit our giving page to donate. There, you can designate which scholarship you’d like to support.


Additional information

The National Press Club’s Scholarship Committee reviews applications and selects the recipient for each NPC scholarship. The review process takes place during the spring and summer. Scholarship recipients will be notified by the National Press Club president by phone. Scholarship recipients will be invited to participate in the National Press Club’s annual award celebration. Scholarship winners are also awarded one-year complimentary membership to the National Press Club.

The National Press Club Journalism Institute, the nonprofit affiliate of the National Press Club, administers the scholarships listed above. Please email the Institute team at [email protected] with inquiries about the application process. Due to the volume of scholarship applications the National Press Club receives for these scholarships, we cannot reply to inquiries about the status of your application.

This year’s winners will be listed on this page once selections are final.