The 2021 Al Neuharth Free Spirit and Journalism Conference is planned for June 21-24 and, due to the COVID-19 virus pandemic, selected students will participate in a virtual online conference, instead of in Washington, D.C.
One of the hallmarks of the Free Spirit Conference is to bring together students from across the USA and provide an opportunity for them to meet and network with one another. After the pandemic passes, it is our hope to create such an in-person opportunity to include 2020 Free Spirit alumni: an all expenses paid trip organized around a future Freedom Forum event. If you are selected as a 2021 Free Spirit scholar, you would be eligible to participate in such an event.
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The annual Al Neuharth Free Spirit and Journalism Conference program targets rising high school seniors who are interested in pursuing a career in journalism and who demonstrate qualities of “free spirit.”
Students will participate in a virtual conference June 21-24 and are awarded a $1,000 college scholarship. This Freedom Forum Institute program was established in 1999 to honor Al Neuharth, the founder of USA Today, Newseum and the Freedom Forum. The conference is designed to inspire and encourage students to pursue journalism.
Here’s what some of the 2020 Free Spirit Scholars had to say about the this year’s conference:
“The Free Spirit Program does a masterful job of bringing together truly special students from across the country….which is extremely important in fostering the next generation of journalists and I will always be proud to be a part of such a special program.”
“It was such an amazing experience that gave me insight into the world of journalism as well as allowed me to make connections with scholars from all over the county.”
“This conference filled me with a love for journalism I genuinely thought I had lost somewhere along the way.”
“I can’t express enough how great being a part of this program has been. The Free Spirit Program reignited my passion for the field of journalism by exposing me to those who have been in my shoes as a young journalist still making her way.”
“I truly thought the program was amazing; an absolutely amazing opportunity.”