Discover journalism. Develop your future. Dive into Boston.

Teens in Print’s Summer Journalism Institute (SJI) aims to give Boston teens an immersive writing experience through culturally enriching outings that encourage students to interrogate the history of Boston as it relates to them using key journalism skills.

By interacting with public and cultural spaces they may not traditionally have access to, students will be able to claim ownership over larger societal narratives and produce pieces of writing that reflect their enhanced understanding of their unique position within the city of Boston. Through a combination of writing and multimedia projects, students will contribute to and challenge some of the established narratives that define people’s lived experiences in this city.

From Snapchat, to Twitter, to Buzzfeed, news is everywhere you look. Your generation is the first to have 24/7 access to everything going on in the world—but that comes with a unique set of challenges. Couple this with growing up in the city of Boston and suddenly you are the center of historical narratives that have combined with current trends that ultimately shape how people view and behave in this city. We aim to help you find your place within these larger narratives and use your voice to positively contribute to the world around you. 

As a journalist this summer, you’ll get to test out the power of your voice and identity and leave with sharpened media skills, something you’ll be able to apply in the future whether you’re a reporter on the White House beat, or simply reading your news app on the T.

By the end of this hybrid six-week program, you will walk away with a deeper understanding of journalism, plus several published pieces of writing and multimedia content.

SJI is a dynamic program, and every day looks a little different. Here’s a sample of what you might experience:

  • The day will begin with a check-in with a group of 30 of your peers.  
  • Next, you’ll break into small writing modules to talk about the piece you’re working on.
  • After a break, you’ll take some independent time to work on your piece.
  • You’ll have a dedicated mentor and small group check-ins to talk about your writing, ask for and offer feedback, and discuss challenges. 
  • The full group will come back together to share and debrief at the end of each day.

Throughout the summer, you’ll participate in multi-media workshops and explore historical landmarks across this city. You might hear from seasoned journalists, speak to professionals of color about navigating race and equity issues in the workplace, or network with adults in fields like marketing, law, and the arts.

Who participates in SJI?
Each year, we welcome about 30 teens who live in Boston and will be attending high school in September. These teens come from a vast array of neighborhoods and attend dozens of different schools across the city. Approximately 40% of our participants speak a language other than English at home.

When does SJI take place?
SJI runs for six weeks, July 5 – August 11, Monday to Friday. We ask that all participants are able to commit to attending all six weeks of programming.

Where is SJI held?
SJI will be both in-person and virtual this year. You’ll join us in person for the first few days of programming as we review program expectations and equip you with access to our Discord server that we will use to meet virtually. Every Wednesday we will meet in person for the second half of the day and go on a field trip. For the last four weeks, we will be in person at Babson College located in downtown Boston. 

Why should I join?
Earning a byline is hard, even for adult professional journalists. But after just six weeks in the Summer Journalism Institute, you’ll be published on the Teens in Print website. Having a publication on your resume will help you stand out for other professional opportunities—like college and internships. Past participants have talked about their experience with SJI in job interviews, asked SJI mentors for feedback on their college essays, and requested recommendation letters.

How do I get paid?
Participants will be paid an hourly rate of $15 an hour up to 25 hours a week. Checks will be mailed to participants’ homes. Direct deposit is not available.

Do I need to have experience in journalism to join?
No. We do not expect participants to have experience in journalism prior to joining our program. We look for participants who are curious about the world, passionate about something and ready to learn.  

What if I don’t have a laptop computer that I can use?
While students are free to use their own computer, we have laptops available for students to borrow during the summer. Students who borrow technology will be asked to sign a contract along with their parent/guardian.

If I don’t have a lot of writing experience, is SJI for me?
Whether you’re a published poet or you’ve never written a word, our mentor team at SJI will meet you where you are. Our job is to push you to grow as a writer – you just need to be excited about telling your story, and willing to practice writing every day.

While everyone will be required to write in some capacity, we’re open to having students work on products that aren’t explicitly writing, such as a photojournalism series.

Read articles published on the Teens in Print website.

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Check out our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to see photos from TiP and past Summer Journalism Institutes!