Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

Taylor/Blakeslee Fellow selected for 2020 mentored reporting project

CASW is delighted to announce the award of a Taylor/Blakeslee Mentored Science Journalism Project Fellowship to Jerimiah Oetting (@joetting13). The fellowship, which is awarded competitively to a current or recent Taylor/Blakeslee Graduate Fellow, offers a small grant for an independent reporting project and comes with the support of a senior journalist—a previous Fellow—as mentor.

The program is designed to help early-career science journalists gain important experience by organizing and executing freelance projects at a time when publishers are rarely able to cover the full cost of field reporting of science stories. The mentoring component is intended to help ensure the success of the project and also to build a cross-generational network within the community of Taylor/Blakeslee Fellows.

Oetting, who expects to complete the science communication program at the University of California, Santa Cruz this spring, plans an environmental reporting project that explores the complications of managing invasive species.

Freelance science writer Kendall Powell (@KendallSciWrite), a 2001 Taylor/Blakeslee Fellow and alumni of the UCSC program, will mentor Oetting. Powell writes for a variety of publications including Mosaic, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Nature, and Discover and is a contributor to The Science Writers’ Handbook: Everything You Need to Know to Pitch, Publish, and Prosper in the Digital Age (2013, Da Capo).

The project grants are funded by the Chicago-based Brinson Foundation, which provides underwriting for the Taylor/Blakeslee Graduate Fellowships.