SAJA awards scholarships to help graduate, undergraduate and high school students pursue their education and future careers in journalism.
The SAJA Scholarships are made possible through generous contributions from a range of institutional and individual donors and sponsors. To donate to SAJA and help future scholarship classes:
SAJA Scholarship Program
SAJA journalism scholarships provide financial assistance to undergraduate and graduate-level students to pursue their journalistic education.
Scholarship amounts are usually up to $2,000 per student and the number of students awarded scholarships each year may vary from five to ten and is subject to the discretion of the Board of Directors of SAJA.
SAJA is committed to promoting high-quality journalism by enabling students to acquire the necessary education to meet high journalistic standards. SAJA scholarships assist in helping journalism students meet a portion of tuition fees and other costs at North American universities.
Selection/Eligibility: Undergraduates and graduate students continuing their studies in the fall of each year.
All applicants must show proof of admission to a North American educational institution. Applicants must either be of South Asian descent (includes: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka) or demonstrate a keen interest in covering South Asia and/or the diaspora. Immediate relatives of SAJA Board members and judges are INELIGIBLE to apply.
Evaluation Procedure: A committee of judges appointed by the SAJA Board will review the student applications. Applications will be evaluated based on need as well as demonstrated interest in journalism (i.e.: related coursework, internships, extracurricular activities, part-time work), written communication skills, interest and enthusiasm in joining the SAJA community, and serious reflection on what the applicant hopes to accomplish as a journalist. Applicants may be interviewed by phone or in-person by a member of the scholarship committee. Winners are notified by email.
Award process: Recipients are expected to give back to SAJA by volunteering at the annual convention or one other event during the year. They should commit to promoting SAJA activities, events, membership drive and donation appeals on social media platforms to help SAJA achieve its mission and expand the network. All recipients of the scholarship and fellowships must also agree to provide an update on their scholastic endeavors and at the conclusion of the academic year. SAJA reserves the right to post these statements or excerpts thereof on the SAJA website and social media platforms to share with the public the impact of our scholarship and awards program.
Timeline: The timeline for each year will be announced by SAJA's Board and is usually along the following calendar:
Application deadline: Mid-April, subject to extensions, if any.
Judging Deadline: End of May
Candidates presented for board approval: End of May
Winners announced: End of May
Submissions are usually required in PDF format:
The PDF document MUST include:
1) A resume, including contact information for three references
2) A 350-word essay on why you should be awarded the fund. Non-South Asians should demonstrate their interest in covering South Asia or diaspora.
Applicants may be interviewed by phone or in person by a member of the selection committee.
CONDITIONS TO SCHOLARSHIP DISBURSMENTS:
Those selected to receive scholarships will be required to provide the following information / documents to SAJA prior to being entitled to receive the scholarship amounts:
A U.S. Postal address to which the scholarship check will be physically mailed or details of a US Dollar bank account at a bank branch located in the United States; and
U.S. Treasury Form W-9 or Form W-8BEN
Failure to provide any of the above information / documents on a timely basis could result in revocation of the scholarship.
Each scholarship recipient must consult her/his own tax advisor on the extent, if any, to which the scholarship amount may be taxable by any of the tax jurisdiction to which she/he may be subject to. SAJA does not make any representation as to the taxability or non-taxability of the scholarship amount.
All scholarship amounts will be reported to the Internal Revenue Service of the United States government unless the recipient signs a declaration stating that the amount received from SAJA complies with the conditions described by the Internal Revenue Service under the section “Tax-Free” in the rules under Topic Number 421 – Scholarships, Fellowship Grants, and Other Grants (https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc421).