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Fellowship Puts Reporters on Solid Footing as America Ages

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For Immediate Release
May 23, 2012

Contact: Todd Kluss
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(202) 587-2839

Fellowship Puts Reporters on Solid Footing as America Ages

The MetLife Foundation Journalists in Aging Fellowship Program is again welcoming applications from reporters who cover aging issues or who represent ethnic media outlets that serve communities within the U.S. The deadline is July 1.

The program, run jointly by The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) and New America Media (NAM), is made possible by a generous grant from the MetLife Foundation. The chosen fellows will participate in GSA’s Annual Scientific Meeting in San Diego this November, and then deliver a story from the conference and a major piece or series in the following months.

There will be a total of 17 fellows — one more than last year as a result of a supporting grant from the John A. Hartford Foundation. Thanks to its involvement, one reporter covering health and aging topics will be designated as the John A. Hartford/MetLife Foundation Journalism in Aging & Health Fellow.

The U.S. Census Bureau predicts that a full one-fifth of the country’s population will be 65 and older by 2030. Additionally, those from ethnic and racial minorities are expected to make up 40 percent of this age group by 2050.

All applications for the fellowship program will be reviewed by a selection committee of representatives from GSA and NAM. The criteria will include clarity and originality of proposed long-term projects; quality of samples of published or produced work; and high-impact potential of proposals geographically and across different ethnic or racial populations.

Upon arrival in San Diego, the fellows will participate in a day-long pre-conference session. GSA will showcase research highlights from the meeting and host discussions with veteran journalists on how to position aging stories in the current media environment.

The current application and a continuously updated list of stories from previous years’ fellows are available at www.geron.org/journalistfellows.

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The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society — and its 5,400+ members — is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA’s structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society, and an educational branch, the Academy for Gerontology in Higher Education.

New America Media (NAM) organizes the nation’s more than 2,500 ethnic news outlets. Founded by the nonprofit Pacific News Service in 1996, NAM generates original content for and aggregates selected content from U.S. ethnic media that serve many cultures and communities. For more information, visit www.newamericamedia.org and click on “Elders.”

The MetLife Foundation, the funder for this project, was created in 1976 by MetLife to continue its longstanding tradition of contributions and community involvement. Its goal is to empower people to lead healthy, productive lives and strengthen communities. The foundation typically makes grants related to the areas of health, education, civic affairs, and culture.

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