The Alligator Spring 2020

Interested in becoming a part of one of the largest independent student-run newsrooms in the country? The Alligator is looking for its next team of reporters, editors, photographers, videographers and more to move the newspaper forward.

Students will gain professional experiences on deadline in an electrifying, digitally evolving newsroom.

Alligator reporters have covered high-profile events and have made an impact on audiences. They’ve led nationwide coverage of Donald Trump Jr.’s visit to the university and uncovered emails linking his visit to the Student Body president and leading to a resolution for his impeachment. The Alligator’s work was referenced in national outlets such as CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post.

They’ve also covered white supremacist Richard Spencer’s speech at UF and the Women’s March in D.C. They’ve investigated sexual violence on campus, including a story about a university professor who was not fired but allowed to resign after he had sexually assaulted and had inappropriate relationships with multiple women. Reporters completed an ambitious project about the racial and socioeconomic divide in Gainesville.

Our staff has gone on to professional internships and fellowships at: The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Palm Beach Post, The Oregonian, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the Sun Sentinel, the Miami Herald, the Tampa Bay Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Gainesville Sun, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, the Jacksonville Times-Union, the Orlando Sentinel, the Las Vegas Review-Journal, CNN and more.

Being part of The Alligator staff also connects students to a large and diverse distinguished alumni network. Our alumni work at many of the same national, local and regional newsrooms mentioned, study at Harvard Law School and start public relations firms.

Editor Applications

Click HERE to apply

Applications are due at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 20. We recommend that you apply well before the deadline. 

University Editor

The university editor will lead The Alligator’s coverage on all things related to the University of Florida. This editor will manage the Student Government reporter, the university administration reporter, a news assistant and edit contributor stories focused on the university. The Alligator is looking for someone who is organized, passionate and committed to watching over the powers of the university administration and Student Government. 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. Alligator staff writer or editor experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: About $88 a week

Metro Editor

The metro editor will lead The Alligator’s coverage of Gainesville, Alachua County and Santa Fe College. This person will manage and edit the crime and breaking news reporter, city commission reporter, a news assistant and metro-related contributor stories. Stories assigned and edited should range from daily to enterprise stories. The Alligator is looking for someone who is creative, organized and determined to learn about 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. Alligator staff writer or editor experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: About $88 a week

Digital News Editor

The digital news editor will be responsible for assigning stories and editing the two general assignment reporters and a news assistant. This editor will also write and edit briefs, advances and story updates to be published online during the day. 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. The editor is expected to assign, edit, occasionally write and turn in stories during the day, so a flexible class and work schedule is preferred, but not required. Alligator staff writer or editor experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: About $88 a week

Enterprise Editor

The enterprise editor will be responsible for assigning and editing long-form stories and investigations for every week’s Feature Friday and for overseeing one investigative reporter. These stories are typically 1,000 words or more and the editor would work with the reporter through the reporting process for the story. This position is more flexible than other editors, but this editor must be in the office every Thursday print night. This editor also talks often to the multimedia editor about incorporating video, photos, graphics and data visualizations into the story. We’re looking for someone with previous long-form writing and investigative experience who is creative about story ideas, working around reporting challenges and is experimental in writing. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: About $60 a week

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. Journalism and communications majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: About $70 per week

The Avenue Editor (Entertainment Editor)

The Avenue Editor is responsible for maintaining the entertainment section of The Alligator, choosing writers to work for the section as well as editing any work that is sent in. The Alligator is looking for someone with creative ideas who is in tune with local and national entertainment and pop culture. This position is flexible, but the editor must be in the office every Tuesday night. Previous Avenue or entertainment writing experience is preferred but not required. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. All majors are encouraged to apply.

Pay: About $35 per week

Copy Desk Chief

Copy Desk Chiefs are responsible for running 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. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. All majors are encouraged to apply.

Pay: About $25 per night

Staff Writer Applications

Click HERE to apply

Applications are due at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 20. We recommend that you apply well before the deadline. 

Political Reporter

This new reporter would be in charge of reporting on the 2020 campaign on campus and in Gainesville. They would look at polling data, trends and cover campaign events on campus. This reporter would also cover minority groups on campus, their thoughts on the election and how they might influence results for the primary election in March and the general election in November. Occasionally, this reporter will oversee the Florida Legislature when the body is in session and localize some bills to campus and Gainesville. This reporter may also occasionally cover local representatives and senators in the U.S. Congress. We’re looking for someone with an eye for enterprise, creativity and preferably some political writing experience. Because of The Alligator’s commitment to increasing diversity and the groups this reporter would cover, this position will preferably be given to a person of color. Previous staff writer and/or contributing writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: $10 per story that appears in print. $5 per online-only stories and briefs.

Investigative Reporter

This reporter would work on longer projects that would have an impact on the university community and Gainesville. This reporter would work on long-form investigative pieces across all beats in the metro and university sections, filing public records requests and sorting through data. This reporter would write in-depth stories 1,000 words or longer. These stories are expected to take longer, but some quick turnaround may be expected. We’re looking for someone with an eye for enterprise stories, filing and fighting public records requests and sorting and interpreting data. This year, staff writers filed investigative stories on sexual violence at UF, including a story on a university professor who allegedly assaulted or had inappropriate relationships with multiple women. Previous staff writer and/or contributing writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. 

Pay: $20 or more per story that appears in print. 

Student Government Reporter

This reporter is the sole watchdog of UF’s Student Government, which has a more than $20 million budget funded by student fees. This reporter will be responsible for attending weekly Tuesday night Senate meetings, so applicants’ class schedule should not overlap. During Spring semester, this reporter will follow the SG presidential and Senate election. This will include completing candidate profiles, attending debates and following platform generations. Previously, this reporter has also covered national news such as UF’s Student Body President-elect being arrested, the UF Student Body President’s impeachment resolution and done impactful enterprise such as what happened to the Freshman Leadership Council and no UF SG legislation being passed as the semester was ending. This reporter will be assigned stories related to this beat by the university editor but will also be encouraged to pitch his or her own daily and feature story ideas. This reporter will be expected to write an average of four to five stories per week and at least one enterprise or “Feature Friday” story per semester. Previous staff writer and/or contributing writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: $10 per story that appears in print. $5 per online-only stories and briefs.

University Administration Reporter

This reporter is responsible for attending the University of Florida Board of Trustees meetings and writing about updates, changes or announcements dealing with the UF administration. This reporter is also encouraged to dig into demographics of UF faculty, staff and students. Some previous stories done by this beat reporter include UF changing graduation procedures, university negotiations with Graduate Assistants United and the fierce debate over blue lights on fraternity row. This reporter will be assigned stories related to this beat by the university editor but should also pitch his or her own daily and feature story ideas. This reporter will be expected to write an average of four to five stories per week and at least one enterprise or “Feature Friday” story per semester. Previous contributing writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. 

Pay: $10 per story that appears in print. $5 per online-only stories and briefs.

Breaking News and Crime Reporter

This reporter is responsible for covering breaking news and writing about crime on the UF campus and in the Gainesville community. The reporter is expected to write enterprise stories about crime and courts and at least one enterprise or feature story per semester. This reporter will keep up with local breaking news, including serious car crashes that affect traffic, UF Alerts and follow developing cases. The crime reporter will learn how to search court records, request arrest reports and contact law enforcement. Stories can range from following up with a court case on a UF resident assistant accused of grabbing a female and attempting to rape her, to writing about an on-campus scuffle over a “Make America Great Again” hat. This reporter is expected to respond quickly to breaking news, attend law enforcement press conferences and update developing stories. This reporter should have a sharp eye for detail, enterprise and compassion when speaking to victims and their families. Previous contributing or staff writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: $10 per story that appears in print. $5 per online-only stories and briefs.

City Commission Reporter

This reporter will be a watchdog of the Gainesville and Alachua County commission. This reporter will be responsible for looking at the agenda for commission meetings and pre-reporting stories important to the community prior. The reporter will attend these meetings to hear out the results of such agenda items, talk to local leaders and write on deadline. This reporter will also be in charge of covering local races and writing candidate profiles. Other general stories pertaining to the growth of the area or its needs will be assigned. This could include news from local schools and safety. This reporter is expected to write 4-5 stories per week and at least one enterprise or “Feature Friday” story per semester. This reporter should have a flexible Thursday schedule to be able to attend the commission meetings. Previous contributing or staff writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: $10 per story that appears in print. $5 per online-only stories and briefs.

General Assignment Reporter (2)

These reporters will be the jack-of-all-trades in the newsroom. They’ll cover any story from university to metro. They’ll be lead by the digital news media editor, who will teach them how to quickly write briefs and breaking news. They’ll also learn the basics of reporting in a multimedia age across digital platforms. These reporters will be expected to write daily briefs, 2-4 stories per week and at least one enterprise or “Feature Friday” story per semester. Previous contributing writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. 

Pay: $10 per story that appears in print. $5 per online-only stories and briefs.

News Assistants (4)

News assistants will be the first people who our desk editors go to when a breaking news story happens and a staff writer needs backup. These positions allow The Alligator to bring in more people willing to work and learn who may not have the same experience as a staff writer. News assistants will learn how to pitch, write and pursue their own stories. They’ll be expected to write 1-3 stories per week. Previous contributing writing experience is preferred but not required. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: $5 for each story that appears in print. $2.50 per online-only stories and briefs.

Multimedia Applications

Click HERE to apply

Applications are due at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 20. We recommend that you apply well before the deadline. 

Photographer (2)

Photographers capture the details stories cannot tell on their own. Through speeches, protests, features, sports and daily events on campus, photographers are on the front lines 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 recommended. Photographers will also be required to produce at least one enterprise feature photo story and accompanying video per semester. This could stand alone or complement an ongoing “Feature Friday.” Previous contributing experience is preferred but not required. Photojournalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. 

Pay: About $5 per assignment.

Podcast Producer

This producer would be in charge of planning and producing one weekly episode of an Alligator news podcast to interview reporters, editors, sources and more to give students an in-depth look at how stories are produced. This would provide a different way for students to consume The Alligator’s news on-the-go and contribute to the expansion of our digital products. This producer should be creative, have skills in recording and editing audio and working with a Spotify or Apple system. Journalism majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student.

Pay: About $10 per episode.

Videographer

The videographer will be in charge of showing our readers what it’s like to be at an event. This is a new position where the videographer would produce 1-3 professionally filmed and edited videos for online content per week. The videographer will work on videos of weekly important events on campus and the “Feature Friday”. 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 a news organization and contribute to the growth of The Alligator’s digital space. The Alligator is looking for someone creative who can film and edit video quickly to be placed online. Photojournalism or telecommunication majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. 

Pay: About $10 per assignment.

Visualization Producer

The graphic designer will be a visual communicator to make it easy and fun for readers to interpret hard-hitting stories. This is a new position at The Alligator, aimed at pushing our digital and online content further. Flexible applicants are preferred, but the graphic designer and data visualizer can work at their leisure. The Alligator is looking for someone who would seize the opportunity to get creative and have their work published. Knowledge of data visualizations, graphics, Adobe programs, coding and an eye for great design are pluses. We’d love someone who can also code unique story packages. Journalism and communications majors are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply, especially those with a computer science background. Applicants must be a current UF or Santa Fe College student. 

Pay: About $10 per assignment.

Audience Engagement and Digital Applications

Click HERE to apply

Applications are due at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 20. We recommend that you apply well before the deadline. 

Social Media Strategist

This strategist will help The Alligator continue to grow its social media presence and audience engagement. The social media strategist will work directly with the Engagement Managing Editor to work on strategizing social media posts and use different platforms. This person will also come up with new ways to reach The Alligator’s audience. The strategist will also gather and analyze social media posts and send reports to the desk editors, Editor-in-Chief and managing editors three times a week. Although this position is unpaid, this will give the strategist a chance to be experimental and gain practical experience in branding and social media. Journalism and communication majors or marketing students are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must either be a UF or Santa Fe College student. 

This is an unpaid position.

Digital Strategist (the Avenue)

This strategist will help the Avenue continue to grow its social media presence, audience engagement and digital footprint. The social media strategist will work directly with the Avenue’s editor to work on strategizing social media posts, use different platforms and revamp digital content tailored more to a modern audience in The Alligator’s entertainment section. This person will also come up with new ways to reach The Alligator’s audience. Although this position is unpaid, this will give the strategist a chance to be experimental and gain practical experience in branding and social media. Journalism and communication majors or marketing students are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must either be a UF or Santa Fe College student. 

This is an unpaid position. 

Event Planner

The event planner will put together exciting get-togethers for The Alligator’s audience and the university community. The event planner will work with the Engagement Managing Editor to lead the organization of events such as our semesterly open house to welcome contributing writers and introduce them to our staff and organize a table for the audience, university community and interested writers to come to throughout the semester to get information about The Alligator. Other events include “Coffee with the Community” monthly on and off campus and a town hall before the March primary election. Although this position is unpaid, this will give the event planner the opportunity to learn about event planning and have the space to be innovative. Journalism and communications majors or marketing students are preferred, but all majors are encouraged to apply. Applicants must either be a UF or Santa Fe College student. 

This is an unpaid position.