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Sunday, August 01, 2021

Join us for Fall: Staff applications for The Alligator now open!

staff photo
staff photo

The Alligator is looking for reporters, editors, photographers, copy editors and more to join us for the Fall semester! Working at one of the largest student-run newsrooms in the country will provide professional experience and link you to a community of a distinguished alumni network.  

Reporters have been on the front lines covering breaking news such as the I-75 crash that killed seven in January. They’ve looked into the impact Parkland has left on the Gainesville community, studied the housing crisis in the city and investigated student food insecurity at UF. 

Our staff has gone onto internships at The New York Times, Sun Sentinel, The Palm Beach Post, Miami Herald, CNN, Tampa Bay Times, Chicago Tribune, Gainesville Sun, Sarasota Herald-Tribune and more.

Editor Applications:

Apply HERE. Due 11:59 p.m. Aug. 8

This application is for those applying to an editor position at The Independent Florida Alligator. Prior news writing or editing experience at The Alligator or another news organization is preferred. Applicants must be a student at the University of Florida or Santa Fe College. These positions are paid on a two-week stipend.

University Editor

This position is in charge of all things UF and Santa Fe. In this position, you must be comfortable assigning and handling stories about Student Government, university administration and student life. This editor will edit stories for The Alligator’s three day per week print product and daily online content. Stories assigned and edited should range from daily to enterprise stories. 

Metro Editor

The metro editor keeps up with all things Gainesville and Alachua County. The person in this position will be assigning and editing anything from routine crime briefs and city commission stories, to longer pieces that look into the Gainesville community. This editor should be prepared to look for interesting and nuanced angles in local stories. The metro editor will edit stories for The Alligator’s three day per week print schedule and daily online content. 

Digital News Editor

This new position will be very important to breaking news. Duties will include editing briefs and assigning trending stories, as well as keeping on top of breaking news. The editor in this position must have a flexible availability and be able to work on short notice. The Alligator is looking for someone who will scour social media for news stories important to the community, find sources and think of ideas for digital-first angles to engage online readers. 

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Features Editor

This editor is in charge of feature stories and investigations, which are typically +1,000 words long. The editor works with one writer a week to produce the Feature Friday, which must be done by each Thursday night. Although this position is more flexible in terms of time commitment, the Features Editor MUST be in the office every Thursday print night. This editor keeps in contact with the multimedia editor to make sure photo and/or video content is ready and plans ahead for future feature stories and investigations.

Multimedia Editor

The multimedia editor is responsible for working with photographers and videographers to provide multimedia content for the newspaper and The Alligator website. The editor is responsible for producing some media content while assigning daily and enterprise photo and video assignments for staff photographers and videographers. We’re looking for someone who is passionate about multimedia and is willing to collaborate with reporters to create content.

Avenue Editor

Lights! Camera! Action! The Avenue is the culture section of The Alligator, and covers all things arts and entertainment. From a new show opening to creating playlists, the Avenue editor should have an understanding of Gainesville's cultural scene. The Alligator is looking for someone with creative ideas who is in tune with local and national entertainment and pop culture. Previous Avenue or entertainment writing experience is preferred but not required.

Opinions Editor

Have opinions? The opinions editor is responsible for maintaining the opinions section of The Alligator, choosing columnists and cartoonists to work for the section as well as editing any work that is sent in. The opinions editor is also responsible for consulting with the editor-in-chief and managing editors and writing editorials for the print paper. Columnist experience is preferred but not required. 

Copy Desk Chief

Like grammar? Live for AP style? Copy Desk Chiefs are responsible for running the copy desk and selecting and working with copy editors. Copy Desk Chiefs are in charge of proofreading every story and print pages with copy editors to check for factual errors, grammar and AP style. This person will work one or two print nights. Prior experience on copy desk preferred but not required. 

Staff Writer Applications

Apply HERE. Due by 11:59 p.m. Aug. 8. 

The available writer positions are: general assignment, digital/ breaking news, crime and cops, UF Student Government, UF administration, Gainesville city commission/ metro and news assistants. 

General Assignment

There are two general assignment reporter positions. These reporters are the jack-of-all-trades in the newsroom. They’ll cover any story from university to metro to the occasional breaking news. They’ll also learn the basics of reporting in a multimedia age across digital platforms. Each reporter will be lead by the metro and university editor.  

Digital/ Breaking News

This is a new position at The Alligator. There is one digital news position available. The Alligator is a digital first news organization, and we want to prioritize publishing stories online throughout the day as news breaks. 

These reporters will write stories quickly for online that can be updated with more information, like when ACCENT speakers are announced. Students with more flexible and/or light schedules are preferred. 

Crime and Cops

There is one position available. This reporter is responsible for daily crime briefs, enterprise stories about crime and cops in Gainesville, Alachua County and UF. This beat also covers breaking news related to crime and/or emergencies. The crime reporter reads public records, speaks to victims and asks the accused for comment. This reporter is lead by the metro editor. 

UF Student Government

There is one position available. UF Student Government is active and influential, boasting a $21 million budget and autonomy over policy. This reporter is the average student's eyes-and-ears at SG meetings and explains how policy, amendments and legislation affects UF and its students. Attendance at SG meetings and other important events are required. This reporter is lead by the university editor.  

UF Administration 

There is one position available. The UF administration reporter covers UF Board of Trustees meetings,  faculty, campus construction, initiatives like becoming Top 5 and more. If it happens on campus, you'd know about it! This reporting position typically allows room to pursue general assignment and enterprise stories as well. This reporter is lead by the university editor. 

Gainesville City commission/ Metro 

There is one position available. This reporter covers the City of Gainesville's commission, the Alachua County Commission, other local leadership and the policy changes they make. Hot button issues include affordable housing, homelessness, plastic bans, development, racial inequity, education and more. Gainesville is a small but vibrant city that loves politics. Attendance at weekly city commission meetings is required. This reporter is lead by the metro editor. 

News Assistants

There are 3-5 news assistant positions available. News assistants... assist! They help out beat reporters by making some phone calls, interviews and writing parts of stories. News assistants also have the ability to pursue their own stories with the guidance of their editor. Every story a news assistant contributes to will include their byline or contributing line. Each desk editor (metro, university and digital news) has news assistants. This is not a full-time reporting position and is ideal for novice reporters. Assistants are paid $5 per story they publish individually.

Multimedia Team 

Apply HERE. Due 11:59 p.m. Aug. 8.

This application is for those applying for a position on the multimedia team at The Independent Florida Alligator.  

Positions available:

Photographer

Photographers capture the details stories cannot tell on their own. Through speeches, protests, features, sports and daily events on campus, photographers are on the frontlines to preserve the history of the community. Photographers are expected to take 3-4 photos a week that would accompany daily stories and also take photos for the “Feature Friday”. Photographers are also required to complete at least one photo story per month. Although a photographer’s priority is to shoot photos, knowing how to shoot and edit video is also required. 

Videographer

The videographer will work on videos of weekly important events on campus or features. One enterprise feature video per semester will also be required. This could accompany a “Feature Friday” or stand alone. This is a good chance for the videographer to get their content published by news organization and contribute to the growth of The Alligator’s digital space. The Alligator is looking for someone creative that can film and edit video quickly to be placed online. 

Graphic Designer

The graphic designer will be a visual communicator to make it easy and fun for readers to interpret hard-hitting stories. Flexible applicants are preferred. The Alligator is looking for someone who would seize the opportunity to get creative and have their work published. Knowledge of data visualizations, illustrations, Adobe programs and an eye for great design are pluses.  

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