The NAACP/CBS Master Writing Fellowship
Part of on-going efforts to broaden the diversity of talent emerging from the USC School of Cinematic Arts, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the CBS Television Network united in 2005 to create the NAACP/CBS Master Writing Fellowship, a partnership that supports, encourages and educates new voices within the industry.
“There is a dire need for a more inclusive group of creative talent within the entertainment industry,” said Elizabeth Daley, Dean of the USC Cinematic Arts. “USC is pleased to join forces with the NAACP and CBS, who have made it a priority to identify and encourage individuals from various ethnicities, cultures and financial backgrounds and introduce their ideas and voices to the screen.”
The Fellowship is awarded to students at the USC School of Cinematic Arts whose work offers a fresh perspective on ways in which minorities are represented in entertainment.
In addition to providing students with financial assistance for their studies, CBS executives will mentor the recipients throughout their academic program. Fellows may be invited to participate in the CBS Diversity Institute’s Writers Mentoring Program. Students will also intern at the NAACP Hollywood Bureau and have the opportunity to gain production experience on the NAACP Image Awards.
2015 Hannah Park
2013 Josef Sawyer
2012 Chinaka Hodge
2011 Orethia Smith
2010 Dante Love
2009 Lizette Clarke – Zahir McGhee
2008 Rupa Magge
2007 Kelli Ward
2006 Akela Cooper
Julian Bond, Chairman of the NAACP states: “The NAACP/CBS Master Writing Fellowship is an important initiative that will help increase the number of talented, young, diverse writers seeking a career in the entertainment industry. The NAACP is proud to continue its ongoing partnership with CBS and the USC School of Cinematic Arts in providing greater opportunities for minorities in the television and film.”
CBS Chairman Leslie Moonves states: “The diversity of performers and artists on the TV screen needs to reflect the diversity of the audience we serve… and a key component of that process starts with nurturing young creative talent with a wide range of backgrounds and ethnicities. We’re thrilled to partner with the NAACP and USC on this program, which will provide means and access for the scholarship recipients, and an opportunity for CBS to be part of developing the next generation of diverse talent to feed new ideas and voices into our industry.”
The NAACP/CBS Master Writing Fellowship bolsters existing scholarships at the School, including the Creative Artists Agency Scholarship which has been in place since 1997, and the Courtney and Steven J. Ross Fellowship which has been helping students since 1996.