CUNY Journalism School, Howard Create Data Journalism Workshop for HBCU Students

The Du Bois Data Lab is a free one-week data journalism workshop for students from historically Black colleges and universities. Admitted students will receive a $400 stipend.
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  • The one-week pilot curriculum will have journalists of color teaching 15 HBCU undergrads data journalism.
  • Students must apply by Feb. 26, and the program covers travel, housing, and meals.
  • The Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism recently received $10 million toward its goal to become the first tuition-free journalism school by 2026.

The City University of New York's (CUNY) graduate journalism school is offering a free one-week data journalism course to students from historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs).

CUNY's Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism (CNGSJ) announced a partnership Jan. 31 with Howard University, a historically Black university in Washington, D.C., to launch the free data journalism workshop — the Du Bois Data Lab.

It will offer a pilot curriculum in data journalism taught by journalists of color to 15 HBCU undergraduates. Students will learn editorial and technical skills to turn spreadsheets and data into stories, according to the press release.

I'm bringing the Newmark-data philosophy with me, said Sandeep Junnarkar, CNGSJ's data journalism program director, who will teach graduate-level data coursework in the workshop. I want data to be exciting and full of potential — and not scary — for students. I want to get them inspired and see how data can uncover patterns we don't spot in our daily lives.

The program will take place from May 29-June 5 at Howard. Admitted students will receive a $400 stipend and will not have to pay for travel, housing, or meals.

Students must:

  • Apply by Feb. 26
  • Be a current HBCU undergraduate student
  • Be a declared journalism major
  • Be able to attend the program in person

Bringing the most innovative thinking, tools, and expertise to the field will allow us to expand the pool of talent engaged in this crucial public service work, Graciela Mochkofsky, CNGSJ dean, said in the press release. The lab will continue to infuse the field with our school's core values.

The lab will be in Howard's Center for Journalism & Democracy, founded by award-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones.

CNGSJ received a $10 million donation from Craigslist founder Craig Newmark's philanthropic organization to bring the school closer to its goal of going tuition-free by 2026. The school will begin by offering a free education to half of the August 2025 starting class.

In other college journalism news, Spelman College students in Atlanta revived the college's student-run newspaper, The Blueprint, after seven years without publishing. The Blueprint just released its first print edition with the help of the ReNews Project, an organization that helps HBCUs restart student newspapers.

According to a Pew Research survey, only 6% of professional journalists are Black, while 76% are white. With little diverse representation in newsrooms, projects like the DuBois Data Lab and ReNews Project are striving to help more Black journalism students get jobs in media.