Now in its 27th year, AAJA Voices is a student program that provides aspiring journalists with career-ready skills to succeed in the continually-evolving media landscape. By nurturing relationships between students and professional volunteers, Voices also gives students the opportunity to tap into mentors’ networks and begin their own while also providing AAJA journalists leadership and management opportunities. 

Voices students 'tackled an ambitious investigation'

Voices students 'tackled an ambitious investigation'

Many reacted to our student report on the delayed promise of newsroom diversity.

 
The New York Times in 1942. Credit: Marjory Collins / U.S. Office of War Information via Library of Congress.

The New York Times in 1942. Credit: Marjory Collins / U.S. Office of War Information via Library of Congress.

Voices mentors were instantly drawn to this story idea during our pitch process. We had no idea what the reaction would be.

In May, students Peregrine FrissellAla'a IbrahimSheila Raghavendran and Avery Yang pitched this story with their editor, Ron Lin.

Over the next three months, the team "tackled an ambitious investigation ... fueling our adrenaline each time we scored another morsel of information or fiery quote," Sheila Raghavendran said in a testimonial.

"We talked to minority reporters and editors, inadvertently previewing what could be our future experiences as minority journalists."

Karen K. Ho of the Columbia Journalism Review wrote a piece on the Voices report entitled, 'Diversity in newsrooms has been bad for decades and it probably won’t get better.'

Helen Ubiñas of the Philadelphia Inquirer referred to the piece in a column entitled, 'I am not your brown reporter.'

There were plenty of reactions on Twitter, a response from New York Times Deputy Managing Editor Clifford Levy and reactions from reporters and editors at the Huffington Post, Los Angeles Times, Oregonian, Wall Street Journal and more. Raju Narisetti, CEO of Gizmodo, also shared his support of the piece.

In the first three days after the story published, the piece received more than 1,700 views (representing more than half of the traffic to our site) and more than 450 shares on Facebook.

Voices mentor Frank Shyong connected the report to the New York Times' recent botched boba story:

“Diversity is about creating a mainstream that includes everyone’s perspectives, all colors, all creeds—my perspective, my parents, even the perspective of dozens of people who have never heard of boba."

Special thanks to mentors Frank Shyong, Hannah Bae, Jill CowanScott Pham and Wendy Lee for their additional help on this piece.

 
We cried and we sang

We cried and we sang

'It wasn’t until Voices that I worked with a minority-majority team'

'It wasn’t until Voices that I worked with a minority-majority team'