Two awardees — a current college student and a young professional — pursuing sports journalism and media as a career will receive $750 each to pitch and produce a print, digital, audio or visual story about Asian Americans in sports, plus free registration for the annual AAJA National Convention. The Sports Task Force will work with recipients to get the stories published at an outlet. The grants are made possible thanks to a yearly donation by Don Yee of sports talent agency Yee & Dubin Sports, LLC.
Applicants will be selected on the basis of their unique and compelling story pitch, demonstrated journalistic ability, financial need, a strong commitment to the pursuit of a sports journalism career and dedication to AAJA’s mission of advancing Asian Americans and other underrepresented communities in media.
About Jimmie and Suey Fong Yee
Like many Chinese immigrants, Jimmie and Suey Fong Yee immigrated to the U.S. once China fell under Communist rule. They settled in Sacramento and worked hard to create a new life for themselves and their young family. They endured many hardships, but they envisioned and achieved a better future for themselves and their children. They were proud of their heritage as Chinese. One of the important values they taught their children was to be sympathetic to the plight, journey, and struggle of others. Just as the Yees received help from others, it was their wish to return their good fortune by helping other Asians striving to achieve their dreams.
About Don Yee
Donald H. Yee is a partner and founder of Yee & Dubin Sports, LLC., a sports management consulting firm that represents some of the nation’s leading professional athletes, coaches and broadcasters. Yee, a graduate of UCLA and the University of Virginia School of Law, also is a frequent speaker and writer on sports-related issues. He is a former adjunct professor of law at the University of Southern California law school and a visiting professor of law at the University of Virginia School of Law.
APPLICATION DEADLINE: Sunday, Jan. 31, 2021, at 11:59 p.m. PT
The winner will be notified by the end of February. If selected, you will be asked for documentation to support the information you provide. Likewise, all correspondence and award agreements will be generated from the personal information submitted below. So, please use proper spelling, capitalization and punctuation.
- Applicants must pitch a story they can realistically produce with their resources and time
- Unique stories that humanize Asian Americans in sports are highly preferred
- Pitches can include stories that are local, regional or national
For currently enrolled students:
- Applicants must be an undergraduate or graduate student enrolled full-time with at least 12 credit units each semester at a junior college or university located in the United States
- Applicants must be currently taking or planning to take journalism courses and/or pursuing sports journalism as a career
- Minimum 3.0 GPA
For young professionals:
- Applicants must have graduated from a community college or university, including graduate school, located in the United States within the past five (5) years.
- Applicants must be currently and actively pursuing sports journalism as a career
The selected fellowship recipients must follow through with their story pitches as well as commit to a minimum of five hours of volunteer work for the AAJA Sports Task Force.
Pablo Iglesias is a graduate of Bradley University where he studied sports communication. “My scholarship helped me gain confidence as I continue to pursue this lifelong dream I have had of being in the sports broadcasting industry. Additionally, it has helped me expand my network as I was able to make even more connections at this past convention along with strengthening the relationships I’ve had with AAJA members I met last year,” Pablo says. His career goal is to make his way into national sports broadcasting.
Souichi Terada is a student at Michigan State University studying journalism. “Being able to go the AAJA convention was an incredible experience. […] I met some friends I know I’ll have for a lifetime. That was one of the first times in my life I actually met people within the industry who were Asian-American, so hearing their past experiences was eye-opening. I went to other journalism conventions before AAJA, but being in Houston felt different,” Souichi says. He currently works as a sports contributor and intern at the Detroit Free Press.
Charlie Lapastora is a graduate of Oakland University in Michigan where he studied communication. He currently works as a sports anchor and producer for The Media Gateway. “I was able to get to the AAJA convention in Philly and network with potential employers! I am very grateful for the scholarship,” Charlie says about the opportunity. He currently aims to grow as a journalist in every aspect and is seeking mentorships and job shadowing opportunities while establishing himself in the sports industry.
Daniel Tran is a recent graduate of the University of Southern California. “I was already in journalism when I received the scholarship, but it helped me expand my network instantly with motivated colleagues. Without the connections I made, I wouldn’t have a group I can lean on for help regarding career advice or familiar faces when on assignment. Being able to attend the convention may be a career-changing event that I hope others can enjoy,” Daniel says. He currently works as a sports editor for The Tylt.
Josh Tolentino is a student at Illinois State University pursuing majors in journalism and English. “Having my expenses covered for this year’s AAJA convention played a huge role for me. Being awarded the Jimmie & Suey Fong Yee Scholarship couldn’t have come at a better time,” Josh says. He has recently completed a sports internship with the Chicago Sun-Times, turning down a full-time paid page design internship in order to continue his true passion for sports coverage. He currently serves as a sports editor for Illinois State University’s student newspaper The Daily Vidette and aspires to become a full-time reporter for the NBA.
Application information will only be used internally by AAJA to promote student opportunities and for program evaluation and planning. In the application form, please indicate whether you would like to be notified of further student opportunities from AAJA, including scholarships, grants and additional journalism training. AAJA does not share applicant information with third parties.