WASHINGTON, D.C., November 3, 2002 – The Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships (AFPF), and the Daniel Pearl Foundation, announced today that they have established a new fellowship in the name of Daniel Pearl aimed at promoting press freedom and fostering East-West understanding. Underwritten by the Daniel Pearl Foundation and administered under the program created by Alfred Friendly, the Pulitzer-Prize-winning former managing editor of the Washington Post, the Daniel Pearl Fellowship will initially give strong preference to applicants from Pakistan. The Wall Street Journal has agreed to host the first Daniel Pearl Fellow (DPF) in its Washington, DC Bureau where Daniel Pearl worked as a reporter from 1993 until 1996.
“This is an important day for the Foundation and for Danny’s legacy” said Judea Pearl, president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation formed this year and father of the slain Wall Street Journal bureau chief. “This fellowship is an example of what Danny stood for, bridging cultures and fostering journalistic excellence. I believe he would be very proud of this program.”
The Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships, set up in 1983 to train foreign journalists in US newsrooms, assists promising young and mid-career journalists from developing-world countries where press freedom is newly established or at least in prospect by immersing them in the day-to-day practices of the American press. Successful DPF candidates will also be Alfred Friendly Press Fellows. Joining 214 AFPF alumni from 72 countries, they will have to meet the program’s traditional criteria, among which are fluent English, at least three years of news-gathering experience and employment at a non-governmental publication in their own countries. In addition, the Daniel Pearl Fellowship will focus on journalists who exemplify the spirit and professionalism of its namesake, a foreign correspondent noted for his open-minded coverage of the Muslim world and gift for portraying the human side of complex international problems.
The 19-year-old AFPF program, among whose graduates are top editors in Colombia, Croatia, Ghana, Hungary, Indonesia, Malawi, Malaysia, Nepal, Nigeria, the Philippines, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Uganda and Zimbabwe, is unique in US journalism education in the length of stay and the hands-on training it provides. Successful AFPF applicants receive a six-month, in-depth, practical introduction to US print media, working as staff reporters in American newsrooms in major (or mid-size) cities.
To be considered for the Daniel Pearl Fellowship, journalists applying to AFPF in 2003 from Pakistan must submit a two-page statement explaining how their career goals match the mission and spirit of Daniel Pearl as a journalist and a human being. This essay is in addition to all other AFPF application materials.
The paradox overshadowing Pearl’s death was that his killers, Islamic militants angry with the West, murdered a reporter who was particularly sensitive to their views and grievances and committed to explaining them to his readers. Daniel Pearl wrote objectively and often about the hardships and aspirations of people in Islamic countries, most notably Dubai, Iran, Kosovo, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Yemen. This fellowship will focus on connecting journalists from Muslim countries with their American counterparts.
The Daniel Pearl Foundation, founded by his family is continuing his life mission to encourage dialogue among people of different cultures, to reduce cultural and religious hatred and create a platform for responsible and creative journalism. As a bridge connecting American and foreign journalists in shared professional ventures, the Friendly Fellowships, strengthened by the Daniel Pearl Fellowship, will advance that urgent and demanding mission.
For further information, please contact Susan Albrecht, executive director of the Friendly Fellowships, at (202) 737-4414 or email email@example.com or Seth Jacobson with the Daniel Pearl Foundation at (310) 317-1966 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information on Daniel Pearl is available at http://www.danielpearl.org and http://www.saja.org. A selection of his writings, entitled “At Home in the World”, was published this year by Simon and Schuster.