Insider Inc is today announced as the latest news media organisation to give its financial backing to the NCTJ’s Journalism Diversity Fund.
It is the fourth news publisher to have become a partner in the scheme this year, bringing the total number of media backers to 18.
As well as making a financial donation to the JDF, Insider Inc will play a key role in assessing the candidates who seek support from the programme, and in providing mentors and insight opportunities for JDF beneficiaries.
Emma Smith, managing editor at Insider UK, said: "We are extremely proud to sponsor the NCTJ's Journalism Diversity Fund. The JDF has made a career in journalism accessible for over 400 aspiring journalists from diverse backgrounds through its bursaries and mentorship scheme. We look forward to working with the NCTJ on this incredibly important initiative to continue to improve newsroom diversity in the UK."
In February 2020, the NCTJ announced a fundraising drive to coincide with the JDF’s 15 anniversary. And in a year dominated by the coronavirus pandemic, the number of applications to the scheme soared. Overall, the JDF offered assistance to a record 59 individuals, enabling them to study for the industry-backed Diploma in Journalism on NCTJ-accredited courses.
The NCTJ continues to seek additional sources of funding to ensure the JDF can meet demand from the rising number of prospective journalists who would otherwise not be able to take professional qualifications.
Since its establishment in 2005, following a generous annual grant from NLA Media Access, the JDF has supported more than 400 students from diverse backgrounds. The scheme’s alumni have moved into journalism careers across the news media sector.
Will Gore, head of partnerships & projects at the NCTJ, said: “I’m very pleased indeed that Insider Inc has decided to become a contributor to the JDF, and to partner with us in our endeavours to make professional journalism training as accessible as possible. Breaking down financial barriers and encouraging people from diverse backgrounds into the news media sector is vital, and it is fantastic to see a growing number of journalism employers joining our mission to do this.
“The JDF has helped hundreds of people over the years, enabling talented would-be journalists get the training they need for the best chance of success. As we look to develop the scheme, the support of the industry for the work of the JDF – and for NCTJ qualifications – is more important than ever.”
The Journalism Diversity Fund is now supported financially by 18 media organisations: BBC, Bloomberg, CNN International, DMG Media, Dow Jones, Financial Times, Google News Initiative, Insider Inc, ITV News, Newsquest, News UK, NLA media access, PA Media, The Printing Charity, Reach Plc, Reuters, Sky and Yahoo UK.
All sponsoring organisations play an active role in the evolution of the scheme.
Bursaries are awarded to help cover the costs of NCTJ Diploma in Journalism course fees and/or living expenses, depending on an individual’s specific circumstances. All bursary recipients are matched with a professional journalist mentor for the duration of their course.