Some very exciting news

I’m excited finally to be able to announce that I’ll be joining the class of 2015 at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University.

From August, I’ll be joining the 77th Nieman gang, along with 11 other international fellows and 12 US fellows, all working journalists from different disciplines, auditing classes at Harvard and taking courses together. It’s a great honour to have been accepted, and one that I wasn’t expecting, given my age and background in non-traditional media. I’m going to do my best to be equal to the challenge of the programme. Special thanks go to the amazing Emily Bell, Paul Mason, Jason Cowley and Clay Shirky, who took the time to write letters of recommendation.

What this means is that for the course of the academic year, I’ll be based at Harvard, and won’t be working as a regular columnist and reporter. Any professional work I do undertake will be at the discretion of the Nieman Foundation. I’ll continue to use Twitter and to update my own blog, but my chief focus will be on study.

I’ve been feeling for a while now that in order to take my writing to the next level, I needed to stop careering around chasing stories, go back to school and sit my bum down for some serious reading and nerding out. This fellowship is an unbelievable opportunity to do just that.

I’ve never been to Boston or to Cambridge before, and I won’t have time to visit before the programme starts, so I’m crossing my fingers that I’ll find friends and fellow travellers in the area. Eee! Back to school for me!

6 thoughts on “Some very exciting news”

  1. Congratulations. An honour indeed, but one earned with relentless hard work and sacrifice that has and should continue to produce great results.

  2. Excellent news, very well done. I’ll miss your writing, but perhaps its a good idea to slow down so you can think longer and study your profession in moore detail.

  3. Ms Penny: In the current New Statesman, you write: “. . . here, in case it wasn’t clear, is my position. Abortion should be available on demand, without restrictions, for everyone who wants it.” This is pretty all encompassing – no loopholes or provisos there: EVERYONE is included. Then it must include women who, unprompted and unpressurised, decide to abort a foetus because it is female. Judging by a polemic you wrote about it in the New Statesman several months ago, you condemn that practice. But both positions can’t be held at the same time – so which is it?

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