About us

About the Journalism Diversity Fund:

Administered by the NCTJ, the Journalism Diversity Fund awards bursaries to aspiring journalists from socially or ethnically diverse backgrounds who do not have the financial means to support themselves through NCTJ journalism training, giving them the opportunity to pursue one of the most exciting and rewarding careers around.

The fund was set up in 2005 with a donation of £100,000 from NLA media access, with the aim of encouraging more diverse people to train as journalists and making newsrooms better reflect the communities they serve.

Thanks to the financial support of the industry, we have awarded more than 400 bursaries since 2005.


Each bursary awarded is unique, but with the help of the Journalism Diversity Fund, you could:

  • Have the costs of your NCTJ-accredited course and examination fees paid for
  • Equip yourself with the vocational skills required to embark on a successful career in journalism
  • Get work placements at leading publishing companies while completing your course
  • Receive contributions to your living expenses during your training

Two specialist bursaries are also awarded each year. The Claire Prosser bursary is awarded to an applicant who has been awarded JDF funding and has an interest in a career as a broadcast or digital journalist. The Thomas Read bursary is awarded to an applicant who has been awarded JDF funding and has a long-term illness, health problem or disability.

The application process:

Applicants to the JDF must have secured a place on an upcoming NCTJ-accredited course (with the exception of undergraduate or distance learning courses). They must also be a British citizen from a diverse background who can demonstrate a genuine commitment and potential to be a successful journalist. Click here for full eligibility criteria.

Application forms are sent to a panel of editors and senior journalists, who will shortlist candidates who have demonstrated a genuine commitment to journalism and have provided evidence that they could bring diversity to a newsroom and are financially in need.

If shortlisted, you will then be invited to attend an interview so that a final decision can be made. Interview panels are made up of senior industry figures who will ask various questions about your passion for journalism, financial need and your diversity. The following week, you will be notified of the outcome.

There are five rounds of applications for the 2020-21 academic year. Please click here for this year’s dates.