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Audio Academy

Applications for the 2021-22 Audio Academy are now closed. Check back here in early 2022 to apply for next year's program.

KALW is calling all applicants for Audio Academy, our unique nine-month radio journalism training program for adults at KALW Public Radio, an NPR and BBC affiliate in San Francisco.

This program is designed to give you a professional audio production and journalism education, tuition-free.

We are looking for:

  • Creative thinkers, great writers, audiophiles who dream in sound & story
  • Anyone who is hungry to break into the world of audio journalism
  • People with a passion for covering a diversity of communities
  • Ideally, people who are knowledgeable about the Bay Area
  • Team players ready to work hard in a supportive newsroom
  • Fans of workday dance parties (appreciated but not required!)

About the program

You will be an integral part of the production of our award-winning daily news show, Crosscurrents. Our show is known for “going deeper” and telling nuanced, sound-rich stories. You’ll help with some newsroom tasks like fact-checking and research, while also getting to pitch and produce your own radio features in our supportive, collaborative newsroom.

In addition, you will receive in-depth training in audio journalism and production through weekly evening seminars taught by KALW reporters, engineers, and special guests. Seminar topics include: field recording; editing in Protools; writing for radio; and voicing. In addition, every Audio Academy fellow will receive mentorship from Crosscurrents staff as well as shadowing opportunities.

Commitment and Timeline:

Start date: Wednesday, September 8, 2021

End date: Thursday, June 16, 2022

Participants will be asked to commit to a minimum of 16 hours of work per week. This includes one regularly scheduled eight-hour shift in our newsroom (Monday–Thursday) and another eight hours working in the field, producing your own stories. We do our best to accommodate everyone’s schedules for these newsroom days.

Participants will also be asked to attend weekly evening seminars (6:30 to 9 p.m.) on Wednesdays from September to December and then bimonthly seminars (6:30 to 9 p.m.) on the first and third Wednesday of each month from January to June.

The Academy includes a two-week break in late December and two flexible vacation weeks for each participant.

Enrollment in a college or university is not necessary to participate. We discourage applicants who are currently full-time students due to the time demands. This is a free and unpaid training opportunity.

This is an in-person opportunity. Participants must be willing to travel to our station in South San Francisco.

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How to apply

To apply, please submit the following:

  • A cover letter that tells us why you want to be in the Audio Academy; how you hope to use the training that we provide; and why your perspective is one that needs to be represented in the world of public radio and podcasting
  • A resume with any relevant experience
  • Links to 2 samples of your creative and/or professional work. This can be a radio story that’s aired on an outlet, a short film you've produced, an episode of your independently-produced podcast, a creative writing story you’ve written for a class, a poem you've published, a blog post, etc. Either include URLs to work already online or upload your work to SoundCloud or Google Drive.
  • Link to an original audio work (Optional but highly encouraged.) This can either be an audio story you’ve already made and you didn't already include in your work samples above, or one that you craft for the application that tells us something about yourself. It doesn’t have to be technical, award-winning, or rich in sound design. We want to learn about you as a person and how you’re beginning to think in audio. Please either include URLs to work already online or upload your work to SoundCloud.

Don't be afraid to let your personality shine through in your cover letter and optional audio work — we want to know who you are!

Submit your application materials through our online form.

Application deadline: Sunday, May 9th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time.

We will let applicants know their status by June 11th.

Questions? Email Marissa at marissa@kalw.org

We look forward to meeting you!

KALW encourage applicants of all backgrounds and we want you to show us your authentic self in your application. We strive to be a workplace where everyone feels that they belong, that their voice matters, and that they are challenged and supported to do their best work.

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