Wyoming Public Media education reporter selected as Nieman Fellow at Harvard

WYOMING — Tennessee Watson, an education reporter with Wyoming Public Media, was selected as a Nieman Fellow by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard. Following her year as a Nieman Fellow, she will have additional support as an Abrams Nieman Fellow to do an investigative project on juvenile justice in Wyoming.

Watson will study how journalists can best cover the challenges young people face beyond moments of crisis—such as school shootings and teen suicides—in order to produce more nuanced reporting. For her fieldwork as an Abrams Nieman Fellow, she will explore the juvenile justice system in Wyoming, one of three states that opts out of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act.

“It’s such an honor to have this fellowship, and it comes with a great responsibility to share all that I learn with the journalism community in Wyoming and to produce meaningful reporting,” Watson said.

The Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, home to internationally recognized journalism fellowships, programs and publications, has selected 27 Nieman Fellows for the class of 2020. The group includes local reporters, foreign correspondents, editors, a photographer, a bureau chief, television producers, newsroom executives and others who specialize in data investigations, digital development and innovative forms of reporting across all platforms. They will begin two semesters of study at Harvard University in the fall of 2019.

The Nieman Foundation has educated more than 1,600 accomplished journalists from 98 countries since 1938. In addition to taking classes during their time at Harvard, fellows participate in Nieman seminars, workshops and master classes and conduct research with Harvard scholars and others in the Cambridge area.

For the second time, Nieman will welcome three journalists chosen as the Abrams Nieman Fellows for Local Investigative Journalism. After two semesters at Harvard, they will receive support during fieldwork at home, where they will work on a public service reporting project and participate in specialized journalism education. The 2020 Abrams Nieman Fellows are Matthew Dolan, Johnny Kauffman and Tennessee Watson.

Wyoming Public Media’s General Manager Christina Kuzmych lauded Watson’s accomplishments, stating, “She earned one of the nation’s highest journalism distinctions, and she will bring her experience and knowledge back to Wyoming.”

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