WABJ High School Students to Participate in POLITICO Journalism Institute

The Washington Association of Black Journalists is thrilled to announce that two students in our 2024 Urban Journalism Workshop cohort have been selected to participate in the POLITICO Journalism Institute, an annual intensive training program designed to advance newsroom diversity.

UJW students Sanaa Wells, a senior at Crossland High School, and Sheridan Lee, a junior at Frederick Douglass High School, will join 16 undergraduate and graduate students from UC Berkeley, Northeastern University, and several other institutions across the country who were selected from a competitive applicant pool for the 10-day hands-on training program. This marks the second time (last year was the first) that PJI will include high school students.

PJI offers training for students interested in sharpening their skills and learning best practices from seasoned journalists in the nation’s largest politics- and policy-focused newsroom. PJI has trained hundreds of emerging journalists since its inception and is offered in partnership with the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education and American University.

Programming for PJI includes interactive workshops, sessions with industry leaders, and mentor pairings. It also takes participants behind the scenes at historic locations where news is made, including the White House, Congress, and the National Press Club.

“Diversifying the journalism ranks continues to be an important goal for us at POLITICO,” said John Yearwood, editorial director, diversity & culture, at POLITICO. “We are incredibly proud that 11 years after its inception, PJI continues to have an outsized impact on helping to diversify the industry and cannot wait to welcome the next class to the program.”

WABJ President Khorri Atkinson, a PJI alumnus, expresses his deep gratitude to POLITICO for its partnership and chapter member Yearwood for his invaluable support and for providing two promising young journalists with practical experience and insights that go far beyond the classroom.

“It will not only help enrich our UJW curriculum but has also provided our students with unique opportunities to engage with the real world of journalism and make lasting connections with some of the industry’s movers and shakers,” Atkinson said.

Read the full announcement here


Founded in 1975, the Washington Association of Black Journalists is an organization of Black journalists, journalism professors, public relations professionals and student journalists in the D.C., metro area. WABJ provides members with ongoing professional education opportunities and advocates for greater diversification of the profession.