Paid Opportunity: Editorial Internship at the welsh agenda

About the IWA

The Institute of Welsh Affairs (IWA) is an independent think tank working to make Wales better. Our vision is to help create a Wales where everyone can flourish. We are politically independent and do not represent any particular sector, trade or interest group. We’re also a charity, funded by our members, charitable trusts and foundations, and our own commercial activity. We act as a catalyst for change. We stimulate challenging debate and work with our members and others to spark practical, new ideas that can shape Wales’ future. Through our policy projects, we develop and secure commitment to practical ideas that can transform Wales.

About the welsh agenda

The IWA’s journalistic platform the welsh agenda is one of Wales’ most respected current affairs publications, hosting robust debate on all aspects of Welsh political, cultural and civic life. Our contributors include politicians, award-winning journalists, activists, academics and budding talent from all walks of life, and our readers span the Welsh public, private, academic, community and third sectors. Our online magazine publishes articles on a rolling basis, while our print issue is published twice a year, in May and October, funded by the Books Council of Wales.

About this role 

We are recruiting three interns who will join the welsh agenda’s editorial team for a duration of six weeks each. Working closely with the IWA’s Communications, Media and Engagement Officer and collaborating with the team as required, interns will gain valuable experience in writing, editing and commissioning.  They will also acquire a greater understanding of the publishing industry and of the role of magazines within Wales’ media ecosystem. 

We are looking for people who will be ready to take an active role in contributing to and developing the magazine, including through participating in  strategic discussions about taking the welsh agenda to the next stage of its existence. This role is funded by a grant from the Books Council of Wales’ New Audiences Fund, which has as its aim attracting and supporting new entrants to the industry.

Who are we looking for?

This placement is intended as a mentoring opportunity as well as a career development one, and aims to support new entrants to journalism at a time of intense debate about its diversity and sustainability. 

We propose to take on three interns, preferably from different regions across Wales. 

For this reason, we would particularly like to hear from candidates who identify as:

  • A person from a working class background
  • A person of colour
  • A disabled person
  • A person from the LGBTQ+ community
  • Coming from north Wales, mid and west Wales, or south west Wales
  • A combination of any of those identities.

Although the welsh agenda is written, edited and published in English, we are also particularly keen to hear from Welsh speakers as we intend that at least one intern will be a Welsh speaker.

You will be curious, motivated and have a demonstrable interest in journalism and/or publishing and editing. You will be passionate about promoting and supporting your own career and that of other writers, including through editing and proofreading. You will have excellent communication skills and be capable of working on your own initiative and independently to set deadlines within a dynamic team environment. This role would suit a variety of profiles, and we are more interested in experience or demonstrable ability to write and edit well and to come up with fresh practical ideas than we are in qualifications. You will also be comfortable working on a variety of digital platforms and show an interest in new forms of storytelling and journalism. You will be well versed in and committed to principles of equality and diversity.

What you will be doing

Over a six-week period, you will undergo a bespoke training programme encompassing the development of skills in writing op-eds, features, interviews and profiles; editing, proofreading and commissioning; WordPress, SEO and professional social media training, as well as gaining wider experience of working as a journalist within the unique setting of a think tank. You will get experience of working within a busy, independent charity, and of managing the stakeholder relationships that come with such an environment.

Person specification

Essential Criteria

Experience

  • Experience of writing for a public audience, preferably in the journalism or publishing industry
  • Experience of contributing to social media on behalf of an organisation and an understanding of the issues involved

Skills

  • Interest in and understanding of the journalism/publishing sector
  • Excellent writing and editing skills
  • Proven ability to communicate at all levels, with both technical and non-technical audiences, and to present complex issues and concepts in an accessible way in clear written documents or on social media
  • Good understanding and experience of technology to include use of full Microsoft Office package / Google equivalent
  • Experience of WordPress or similar content management system
  • Strong interpersonal skills, particularly when giving/receiving feedback

Qualifications, Education and Training

  • A Levels or equivalent

Desirable Criteria

Knowledge

  • Written and spoken Welsh
  • Interest in and understanding of the publication process, either as a contributor or editor
  • Interest in and understanding of the constraints of running a publication and of the commercial underpinnings of publishing
  • Interest in journalistic writing, storytelling (written/digital), or in using video, graphic design or photography for storytelling

Experience

  • Editorial / publishing role

Skills

  • Relevant university degree level or equivalent experience

Terms and Conditions  

This is a full-time internship (37.5 hours per week) for a fixed period of 6 weeks. We are a Living Wage employer and interns will be paid the real living wage. We are also a supportive and flexible employer because we care about our team. You will be expected to sign our internship agreement. If you are successful in your application, we will ask that you pick your preferred time to complete the internship: either February – March 2023, April – May 2023, or September – October 2023.

Location 

The IWA is based in Cardiff.  However, we’re happy to discuss the possibility of working remotely for much of the time so long as you are available for some office-based meetings to be agreed at the start of your placement.

How to apply

Due to the nature of this internship, please send a CV, a short covering letter (max 2 x A4 sides each item) setting out why you want to work for the IWA and why you are suited to this role, both addressed to Rhian Cook. We also request a writing sample (more below). Please name your document [your name]_BCW Intern_CV.pdf, [your name]_BCW Intern_Cover letter.pdf and [your name]_BCW Intern_Writing sample.pdf   

This should be sent to [email protected] by 9am on Monday 5 December 2022.

About your writing sample

Your writing sample should demonstrate your journalistic flair and an ability to write for a wide audience. You are encouraged to highlight any previously published work in your CV and cover letter, but the writing sample itself should be an original piece. Should you be unsuccessful in your application, we may still contact applicants to discuss the option of publication later on.

Brief

In 700 words maximum, please submit:

Either

  • A review of a cultural production of your choice (book, TV, film, theatre) with a Welsh connection

Or

  • A piece on the place you come from, in a format of your choosing (journalistic, documentary, interview-style, memoir, satire and so on.) The piece could reflect on questions of belonging, identity, or community.

Submissions will be assessed based on their style, originality, accuracy and appropriateness for the welsh agenda. We will also use this exercise to assess your writing skills, and grammar and spelling will be taken into account.

We are committed to improving the diversity of our team so please note that we will remove all identifying contact details from your application so that we shortlist blind. This is to ensure that we evaluate your application on your skills and experience alone.

Please also complete our Equality and Diversity Monitoring form when you apply, which can be found here. This is voluntary and anonymous, but helps us to ensure that we are being inclusive in our recruitment, as part of our commitment to the Zero Racism Wales pledge.

Interviews will be held virtually on Monday 12 December 2022.  

If you have any queries, please contact Rhian Cook, who will be able to arrange an informal conversation regarding the role, on 02920 484387 or via [email protected].

Issued 4 November 2022.