Boston University presents a once-in-a-lifetime experience for high school students interested in journalism or writing to expand their news reporting skills, experience college life and explore Boston: the BU Summer Journalism Institute.

Uniquely, each instructor is also a working journalist, so what’s taught is grounded in real-life experience. Each lesson is tied to its practical application, by giving students reporting assignments on campus and in the city. Each day is an opportunity to taste what’s it like to work in the news field, live on a campus, and make new friends from all over the country.

SJI also serves as an exploration of campus life. Students have the option of commuting or living on campus in Boston University residence halls. Instructors use the same textbook from BU’s journalism fundamentals course, and give students the freedom to pursue their own stories.

We’ve made time for students to explore the city of Boston, its museums, its shopping and its history. Many students tour Boston University as well as nearby schools such as Harvard, MIT, Boston College, Tufts, Emerson, Northeastern and University of Massachusetts at Boston.


Classroom starts each day with a review of journalism fundamentals in a collegiate format. Boston University’s core journalism textbook provides daily readings and writing assignments. Instructors cover: story ideas; sources and research; interviewing; writing leads; story structure; writing for broadcast and web; accuracy; libel; ethics; and more. Curriculum for students opting for the photojournalism track will share some topics but will focus more on the operation and use of the camera and the editing of their photos.

Newsroom divides students into reporter teams, each led by a professional journalist serving as their editor, to apply what they learn in the Classroom by covering real news events in the city of Boston. Students fan out in small groups for city council meetings, political rallies, sporting events, features or police reports. With guidance from their editor, students share interviews and research to each write their own stories for personal portfolios. In addition, editors start students on in-depth investigations suitable to be tailored to their high school newspapers. Students opting for the photojournalism track will typically join one of the Newsroom reporter teams to shoot photos to accompany stories, while also pursuing their own assignments.

Special block presents learning opportunities beyond the Classroom and Newsroom: screening of the Academy Award-winning movie, Spotlight; tour of the Boston Globe and local NPR affiliates; guest lecture from experts on the Freedom of Information Act and media law; college tours of Boston University and other nearby schools; visit to the Museum of Fine Art, Boston Common and baseball’s Fenway Park; group opportunities for community service; and more.

Free block gives students unstructured time to conduct interviews, write and revise story drafts, and catch up on their reading assignments for the next morning. It also gives students the chance to hit the university gym (fee applies), explore Boston (during day hours), wander campus with new friends, or simply relax.

Meals are served at the Boston University dining hall. Students residing on campus each receive a dining pass for 14 meals. Campus offers numerous other options, from Starbucks and Subway to only-in-Boston eateries and cafés.


Admission to NECIR's Pre-College Summer Journalism Institute at Boston University is competitive and based on demonstrated need and merit. Seats are limited to 45 students per session. Applicants ages 14 to 18 are eligible (including graduating seniors), and are notified of acceptance within two weeks. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Students applying for a full-tuition scholarship must be submit their application for admissions by January 31, 2020. Scholarships are limited. Applications emailed or received after January 31 will not be considered.

Students applying for financial aid must submit their application of admissions by April 1, 2019. Applications emailed or received after April 1 will not be considered.

Cost and Session Information

Residential: $3,500
Commuter: $2,600

Session 1: June 22 to July 3, 2020
Session 2: July 6 to July 17, 2020
Session 3: July 20 to July 31, 2020

Participant Reviews

Write a Review

This program hasn't been reviewed yet. Write the first review!

Participant Reviews

Write a Review

This program hasn't been reviewed yet. Write the first review!

Request More Information

Close Icon

Want More Information about Boston University Summer Journalism Institute?

Your request will be sent directly to Boston University College of Journalism: Com Beyond.

I am a:
By submitting this form I confirm that I am at least 13 years of age and give my consent to be contacted by Boston University College of Journalism: Com Beyond by email as well as by phone and/or mail (if provided).