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The Dennis A. Hunt Fund for Health Journalism

Program Description: 

The Dennis A. Hunt Fund for Health Journalism honors Dennis Hunt's legacy by providing grants of up to $10,000 for ambitious investigative and explanatory journalism projects on critical health issues facing underserved communities. Hunt was a visionary communications leader, the late vice president of communications and public affairs at The California Endowment, California's largest health foundation. He had an enduring commitment to high-quality journalism on critical health issues. While serving at The California Endowment, he co-founded the USC Annenberg/California Endowment Health Journalism Fellowships, now called the Center for Health Journalism, which has educated hundreds of journalists on pressing community health and health policy issues confronting underserved communities in the United States. The fund is financed by memorial contributions from Hunt's friends and colleagues.

The grant is designed to cover reporting and publishing- or broadcast-related costs such as travel, website development, database acquisition and analysis, environmental or health testing, translation services, and a journalist’s otherwise uncompensated time. Both freelancers and news outlet employees are eligible to apply.

The Dennis A. Hunt Fund seeks proposals for stories or multimedia projects that illuminate or expose critical community health or community health policy issues. Proposals can focus on a specific health topic or delve into a confluence of circumstances and conditions that impact health, including environment; social class; crime and violence; urban development; access to health resources or the lack thereof; school absenteeism; transportation or city planning, and  and disparities in health.  Click here to read summaries and access links to notable projects over the years.

Grantees are selected by a committee of journalists and communications and public policy experts. You can read some of the Dennis Hunt grantees' projects here. 

One third of the amount of each grant is paid at the outset of the project, with the remaining two-thirds  paid upon publication or broadcast. Grantees also are automatically awarded acceptance in the all-expenses-paid National Fellowships in July in Los Angeles, though they do not receive the basic $2,000 stipend. Hunt-funded projects must be published or broadcast within six months of the Fellowship seminars. 

The application form for the Hunt grants is the same as for the National Health Journalism Fellowship, although  a more detailed budget must be submitted. Only five to seven grants are awarded each year, so we urge applicants to indicate their willingness to be considered for the National Health Journalism Fellowship alone.  Please indicate in your Hunt grant proposal how it might differ if you only receive the $2,000 National Fellowship stipend.

Who Can Apply: 

The grant competition is open to print, broadcast, and online journalists in the United States. Both employed journalists and freelancers are welcome to apply. Priority is given to applicants who propose joint projects between mainstream and ethnic media. Students are ineligible.


The nation's top infectious disease specialist will join us for a conversation with national health reporter Dan Diamond of The Washington Post. We’ll talk about the evolving threat posed by monkeypox, the current state of the COVID pandemic, and broader lessons on how we respond to emerging diseases. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors and a social media consultant to join its team. Learn more about the positions and apply.


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