2009-Scripps Howard Institute on the Environment and Science Fellows

I was chosen to be among a very special group of reporters from around the nation in 2008 for a fellowship in South Florida. Today, those colleagues work for the Washington Post, National Public Radio and are independent documentary filmmakers and working all across the country doing amazing journalism. The fellowship actually became a key moment in my decision-making of LEAVING the profession. Odd.

I had literally near-spiritual experiences while there — watching a mother sea turtle lay her eggs under the moonlight on the beach; walking barefoot with an Audubon expert through Lake Okeechobee; and hiking into the outback area of the Everglades to find wild orchids. The experience led me to believe that I could do more good in the world outside of the newsroom than inside of it — one-on-one with people than through the mass media. Was I right? Sometimes I am sure and other times I don’t know. But the Scripps-Howard experiences were among the greatest and I am grateful.

The institute’s goal was to further develop journalists’ ability to report on the environment, medicine and other sciences.

The program combines lectures from experts with panel discussions, and a slate of field visits and studies. Participating journalists visit natural areas, environmental public works projects, laboratories and research stations along the east coast and interior of South Florida. Hosted by Florida Atlantic University. Twenty-five journalists are selected from around the nation each year.

Past Fellows


Jeremy Ashton, Reporter, Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers
Ed Bierschenk, Reporter, Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers
Kit Bradshaw, Reporter/Editorial Page Editor, Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers
Emma Brown, Journalism Graduate Student, University of California-Berkeley
Rhituparna Chatterjee, Associate Editor, Environmental Science & Technology Magazine
Karen Cohen, Freelance Writer
Ian Fein, Environmental Reporter, West Marin Citizen
Paul Emanuel Hagey, Journalism Graduate Student, University of Missouri
Christine Hoekenga, Freelance Journalist

Kumari Kelly, Senior Reporter/Columnist, The Orlando Sentinel

Carrie Ann Knauer, Environment and Agriculture Reporter, Carroll County Times
Ryan Lengerich, Government Reporter, Fort Myers News-Press
Dhyana Levey, Reporter, Merced Sun-Star
Kari Lydersen, Staff Writer, The Washington Post
Holly Pyhtila, Producer/Reporter/Writer/Technician, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Bill Retherford, Documentary Producer-Writer, PRC Digital Media
Rachel Ryals, Reporter, High Springs Herald
Julia Scott, Reporter, San Mateo County Times
Laura Silver, Freelance Writer
Claire Taylor, Public Service Reporter, The Daily Advertiser
Sarah Watson, County and Environment Reporter, The News & Advance


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