Three HBCU students from across the country will join The Atlanta Voice newsroom this summer as a part of the 2019 Discover the Unexpected Journalism Fellowship, a program hosted by Chevrolet and the National Newspaper Publishers Association.
The three students—Tyla Barnes from Hampton University, Miana Massey from Howard University and Emani Nichols from Morehouse College—will take part in an immersive program under Publisher Janis L. Ware and Editor-In-Chief Marshall A. Latimore that will provide the students with opportunities to file real stories as well as work alongside professional journalists and editors from The Atlanta Voice.
Participating in Discover the Unexpected (DTU) program for the fourth year is an honor and a pleasure,” Ware said. “This year the DTU program has expanded its reach to all Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).”
“The application and selection process are extremely competitive and extensive. Team Ingenious is proving to be creative, motivated and self-directed. During these times where editors and state representatives are fighting for a bill to save local journalism (H.R.2054, Journalism Competition and Preservation Act), having the opportunity to train and motivate young journalist is a great way to give back to our youth.”
The fellows’ journey began last week in Atlanta, where they participated in two days of journalism training with Chevrolet and NNPA leadership before they hit the road to begin their reporting assignments. The DTU Fellowship lasts through Aug. 1. In addition to The Atlanta Voice, the DTU fellows will also work the Chicago Crusader, Houston Forward Times and The Washington Informer. Chevrolet will award each DTU Fellow a $10,000 scholarship and a $5,000 stipend. The students will form two teams of three people, and each team will have access to an all-new 2019 Chevrolet Blazer during their reporting assignments.
“The NNPA is excited to partner with Chevrolet for another year in support of young journalists to amplify community voices across our country,” said NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. “Having these young journalists in our newsrooms working side by side with our editors and writers is inspiring and we are committed to including young storytellers’ voices in our reporting.”
The annual DTU program has awarded nearly $400,000 in scholarships and stipends since 2016. The program started with a select number of schools and, based on the overwhelming response, the online submission process was opened to all HBCU students in their sophomore through senior years with an interest in journalism, communications, mass media or visual arts.
Each year, Chevrolet and the NPPA selects six students from America’s HBCUs to travel the country to discover and share positive, inspirational and relevant stories from African American communities during their eight-week summer internship. The other 2019 DTU Journalism Fellows include Tedarius Abrams (Bethune-Cookman University), Elae Hill (North Carolina A&T University), and Sharon Joy Washington (Florida A&M University). The six students were selected from more than 150 other applicants.
“Our partnership with the NNPA continues to provide a unique platform to connect with young and remarkable storytellers,” said Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. “From the inaugural launch at Howard University to the inclusion of all the HBCUs, it’s Chevrolet’s pleasure to partner with members of the African American community, ensuring a legacy is established for generations to come. We’re thrilled to meet this year’s group of fellows and immerse them in all things Chevrolet.”
Disc jockey and music producer DJ Envy, a co-host of the syndicated radio show “The Breakfast Club,” will be the program’s national spokesperson. Musician and author Fonzworth Bentley will serve as the fellows’ Road Trip Adviser. Both are HBCU alums — DJ Envy graduated from Virginia’s Hampton University and Bentley is a Morehouse College graduate.