High Country News, an award-winning magazine covering the communities and environment of the Western United States, is looking for its next cohort of editorial interns. Interns will dive deep into important stories on issues relevant to the Western U.S., have the opportunity to pursue on-the-ground reporting, and benefit from professional mentorship and career development as well as in-depth magazine journalism experience. Successful candidates will help evolve and expand HCN’s coverage of the West, with an emphasis on stories from and for communities typically underrepresented in the media.


From the desert Southwest to the northern Rockies and beyond, the West is at the center of many of today’s biggest news stories on topics such as climate change, water, wildfire, energy, environmental justice, public lands, extremism, food, agriculture, and Indigenous sovereignty. Candidates will bring curiosity, fair-mindedness and a desire to find and report nuanced stories that help contextualize the history of the West, illuminate its present and examine its possible futures. If you are passionate about producing unique and compelling stories on these topics to inform and inspire readers in the Western U.S. and beyond, we would like to hear from you.


Internships will run for six months, starting in July 2022, and include coaching and instruction from across HCN's editorial and art departments. Interns will work with our newsroom editors and leaders to produce reported stories, analysis pieces, Q&As and more.


Interns will work under the general direction of the editor of our North Desk, South Desk or Indigenous Affairs Desk, and duties will include:


  • Writes news, analysis and other in-depth reporting focused on or relevant to the Western U.S.
  • Prioritizes reporting and writing for HCN online, though some stories will also run in print. The position requires the on-time submission of at least three stories per month, typically between 500 and 2,000 words.
  • Fact-checks stories for print and online as assigned.
  • Assists in the production of publishing stories online and the bi-weekly newsletter.
  • Provides consistent support to the assigned desk, including attending and participating in editorial meetings, review of story pitches, cultural competency reviews and administrative tasks as assigned.
  • Contributes to the editorial vision and success of the magazine through meetings, discussions and public appearances.


High Country News is part of a growing number of newsrooms working to address a historic lack of representation, inclusion and equity in journalism with effective solutions. We welcome applicants from all life experiences and encourage members of traditionally underrepresented backgrounds to apply, including Indigenous people, people of color, people with disabilities, women, LGBTQ+, two spirit and non-binary people, and those from marginalized and low-income backgrounds.


Skills and experience:


The internship is geared toward enthusiastic, committed early career journalists who have the ability to work as a member of a dispersed and diverse editorial team. Interns must demonstrate a deep interest in writing from and for underrepresented communities, and an ability to do so in a culturally competent manner.


We are looking for a journalist with an undergraduate degree or equivalent experience. We’re interested in hearing how your own skills, broader experience and qualifications would enhance the role and benefit HCN and the communities we serve and hope to serve across the West.


Candidates should have the ability to create thoughtful, even-handed journalism for digital or print audiences, and be versed in the foundational principles of reporting, producing insightful, fair-minded stories consistently on deadline. Most importantly, they should demonstrate a passion for creating journalism for diverse audiences that deepens readers’ understanding of the issues impacting the West’s natural and human communities.


Compensation and general terms:


Working hours are flexible, but interns should expect to work 40 hours each week. Interns are paid a stipend on a bi-weekly basis of $1,210, plus a work-from-home allowance of $46.15 every 2 weeks, and a one-time signing bonus to help with IT equipment of $500. Benefits include paid vacation leave of 6 days, paid sick and family leave of 6 days, and HCN  paid holidays in the six-month term.


This position is remote and open to candidates who reside in Arizona, Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington or Wyoming. The HCN editorial team is dispersed across the Western U.S.; our headquarters is in Paonia, Colorado.


To apply, please send a resume, three clips and a cover letter explaining your interest and experience covering the Western U.S., and how you'd bring diversity to bear on the work, to [email protected] with "HCN internship" in the subject line. The closing date for applications is April 11, 2022. In your email, please let us know how you heard about the position.



High Country News is the nation's leading independent source of thoughtful, in-depth reporting on the Western United States. Established in 1970, HCN produces an award-winning monthly magazine and a popular website, along with email newsletters, special reports, books and events. From Alaska and the Northern Rockies to the Desert Southwest, from the Great Plains to the West Coast, HCN is a beloved and essential resource for those who care about this region. HCN is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit whose mission is to inform and inspire people to act on behalf of the West's diverse natural and human communities.

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