Sports Journalism Institute

Helping women and minorities get into newsrooms since 1993

Meet the 25th Class of SJI

The Sports Journalism Institute is celebrating its 25th class in 2017.

A group of four women and eight men make up the 25th edition, which will be in residence at the University of Missouri School of Journalism from May 26-June 3, 2017 with students moving on to internships around the country.

The work experience that awaits them is as diverse as the class. ESPN, Houston Chronicle, Kansas City Star, Salt Lake Tribune and are just a few of the destinations. We also welcome back The Memphis Commercial Appeal to the family, as it hosts its first SJI intern since 1994.

“It is amazing to think that this is the 25th class of SJI,” said SJI co-founder Sandy Rosenbush. “What began as an idea among friends at the NABJ convention in Detroit back in 1992 has become an important part of the industry, with roughly 300 graduates. More than a program, this is an extended family.”

In 2012, SJI and Missouri began a partnership in which SJI students work out of the Missouri print and digital newsroom for their boot camp. This year’s SJI class will also include a Missouri student. SJI also has a partnership with the Association for Women in Sports Media, as well as a partnership with the Scripps Foundation, which has two students in this year’s program.

Once again, SJI thanks its partners at the Asian-American Journalists Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the National Association of Black Journalists (whose past president is Gregory Lee Jr. a 1994 SJI alum who faithfully promotes and works with SJI). SJI also thanks its sponsors, including APSE, and Disney.

As SJI approaches 25, we thank our funders and partners (old and new). With their help, we’ve added roughly 300 women and minorities to the staffs of the nation’s sports media.

Throughout the year, SJI will commemorate its special class with a series of “What are they doing now” features, which will be posted on the organization’s website. SJI plans to commemorate its achievement at an event at the National Association of Black Journalists Convention in New Orleans on August 10, 2017.

“It has been a rewarding 25 years. Hopefully the alums can keep it going for 25 more,” SJI co-founder Leon Carter said. “Diversity is sorely needed in print and digital.”

Kendra Andrews
Gonzaga University
Salt Lake Tribune

Ben Arthur
University of Portland
Denver Post

Kellen Becoats
Ohio University
Scripps Foundation Scholar

Kaila Burns-Heffner

Mark Eisenhauer
George Washington University
Houston Chronicle

Eden Laase
Gonzaga University
AWSM Scholar
Sports Illustrated

Logan Murdock
San Francisco State
Commercial Appeal (Memphis)

Alexander Ofori
Elon University

Colton Pouncy

Josh Tolentino
Illinois State
Kansas City Star

Khari Thompson
Hampton University
Scripps Foundation Scholar

DeArbea Walker
Syracuse University