Free Journalism & Student Journalism Awards – The Complete List

The only complete list of free journalism and student journalism awards in the UK and further afield.

We update this list at least once a week, but if something isn’t right, do get in touch. We’ll show awards which are open in green, and ones we know are definitely opening on time in orange. Awards left in black are based on last year’s dates.

We love tip-offs too, so do let us know of any good opportunities!

Don’t forget, you can also find up to date guides of journalism graduate schemes and freelance rates if you need them.

Last updated May 27.

Rolling Applications

Journalism Diversity Fund
For those from a minority background to help them break into the media.


Kurt Schork Awards in International Journalism – Closes May 31
$5,000 prizes for international journalists who report on conflict, human rights, or cross-border issues 

Big Picture – Emerging Photographer Grant Closes May 31 
A call for photographers aged 18-25 to explore conservation, biodiversity and sustainability. There are two $2,500 grants available. 

We Art Water Film Festival – Closed May 6
Up to €3,000 in prizes for documentaries focused on water problems around the globe.

Global Peace Photo Award –  Closed May 24
Formerly known as The Alfred Fried Photography Award, photographers can win  €10,000 for work showcasing human efforts for a peaceful world.

AA Gill Award for Unpublished Food WritersClosed May 26
In honour of the legendary AA Gill, winners will receive £5,000 and their work will be published.


Journalists’ Charity Charles Dicken’s Competition – Closes June 9
Create a character that could have stepped straight out of a Dicken’s novel into the 21st Century and the money raised will go to journalists affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. 

Goi Peace Foundation’s International Essay Contest for Young People – Closes June 15
Write an essay to your present self from 2030 and you could win US$900 and attended the award ceremony in Tokyo

Bayeux Calvados-Normandy award for war correspondents – Closes June 15
€7,000 prizes for radio, photography, television reporting about a conflict situation, or the defence of freedom

MHP + Mischief 30 To Watch: Young Journalist Awards 2020 – Closes June 18
There are eight thematic categories available for UK journalists under 30 to apply for, from news to tech to social media

PLURAL+ UN video competition  –  Closes June 19
Submit a video on migration, diversity or social inclusion for the PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival and you could be flown out to Morocco to collect the award.

GG2 Leadership Awards, Young Journalist of the Year –  Closes June 26
Rewarding excellence in black, Asian and ethnic minority communities. Under 30s only.

Evert Clark/Seth Payne Award for Young Science Journalist – Closes June 26
$1,000 and expenses paid trip to ScienceWriters2020 in Colorado. Must be under 30, producing print/online science journalism

National Geographic Travel Writing Competition – Closes June 30
Write 500 words on a standout travel experience for the chance to get published in NatGeo and win a trip across Vietnam.

CIWEM Environmental Photographer of the Year Award – Closed June 30 2019
A range of categories celebrating the best photos which inspire people to care for the environment.

AITO Travel Writer of the Year Awards – Expected to Re-Open in June 2020
Free to enter, a suite of awards recognising the best in travel writing.

The Comment Awards – Closed June 30 2018
Awards for the best in comment writing.


Ian Parry Scholarship – Closes July 5
Two awards of US$3,500 to help young photographers and photography students undertake a documentary project.

SRA Student Radio Awards – Closed July 26 2019
Student Radio Awards for those involved with an SRA affiliated station.

The British Journalism Review, 30th birthday competition – Closed July 31 2019
A writing competition to celebrate the publication’s 30th birthday. Winners get £500

Free Press Awards – Closes July 15 2019
Global awards for journalists who go to great lengths to make sure stories are told.

And Now What? Film Fund – Closed July 22 2019
Awards up to £500 to 18-25-year-olds to produce your short ideas, along with support worth £1,300.

The Radio Academy 30 Under 30 – Closed July 15 2018
An annual competition for the 30 best young talents in radio and audio.


AAAS Science Journalism Awards – Closes August 1 
Celebrating professional reporting worldwide in science, engineering, and mathematics, with a top prize of $5,000. 

Asian Media Awards – Closed August 20
Dedicated to recognising Asian journalists across the media, both Asian and mainstream.

Mind Media Awards – Closed August 20
Awarded to an individual or group who have covered mental health topics.

TED Fellow Programme 2020 – Closed August 27
Covering your costs of speaking at the TED conference in Vancouver.

BBC Radio 4 Today Programme Student Journalism Awards – Closed August 31
To recognise established and emerging talent in broadcast, print, and photojournalism.


PPA 30 Under 30 Student of the Year – Expected To Reopen in September
Open to current journalism students or recent graduates

The Frontline Club Annual AwardsClosed September 2
To recognise established and emerging talent in broadcast, print, and photojournalism.

Nan Shepherd Prize – Closed September 10
A prize to recognise unpublished nature writers. The winner will receive a book deal with £10,000 advance and mentoring.

Eurasian Creative Guild Awards – Closed September 14
Up to $3,000 for stories which talk about the successes and problems of regional co-operation.

United Nations Correspondents Association Award – Closed September 15
Three categories to award the best of print, broadcast and climate change stories. Prizes amount to $60,000.

BCTJ Awards – Closed September 19
Open to students on a BCTJ accredited course.

NCTJ Awards for Excellence – Closed September 20
Open to trainees and students on an NCTJ course, as well as community reporters.

WeAreTechWomen TechWomen100 – Closed September 20
Awards recognising the top 100 women not in leadership roles working in the tech industry.

Write to End Violence Against Women Bursary – Closed September 30
A £450 bursary awarded to a new writer on the theme of violence against women.


FIPP Rising Stars in Media – Closed October 4
For under 35s who have made a significant impact to a media business in the last 12 months.

The British Journalism Awards Marie Colvin AwardClosed October 4
Awarded to a “future Marie Colvin in the making” who raises the reputation of journalism.

Human Rights Watch Alan. R and Barbara. D FellowshipClosed October 11
A year-long fellowship in New York or Washington covering human rights investigations. $60,000 dollars for the year. 

RTS Student Awards – Closed October 25
Open to both undergraduate and postgraduate students.

The Hostwriter Prize – Closed October 31
Up to $5,000 for collaborative journalism stories.

International Labour Organisation Global Media Competition – Closed October 31
$3,000 prize for professional journalists and $1,000 for students on the topic of labour migration.

BBC Young Reporter Competition – Closed October
For 11-18-year-olds who want to tell and report their stories on the BBC.


The Allard Prize Photography Competition – Closes November 1
Win CAND1,000 for photography which focuses on anti-corruption and human rights.

Wales Media Awards – Closed November 4
A range of awards to recognise achievements in the media in Wales

Student Publication Association Regional Awards – Closed November 7
Regional awards for members of a student publication in the UK or Ireland.

BBC Radio 4’s Journey of a Lifetime – Closed November 10
A £5,000 grant for an aspiring journalist to make the journey of a lifetime and make a radio documentary on it.

The Philip Meyer Award – Closed November 17
Up to $500 for stories which use precision journalism, computer assisted reporting and social science research.

Ian Bell Award Closed November 30
£500 prize for under 30s living, working or studying in Scotland

UK Picture Editor’s Guild Annual Awards – Closes November 30
Free entry to the videographer and student categories.

New Media Writing Prize, Journalism Award – Closed November 22
£750 awarded for the best writing for digital.

IAFOR Documentary Photography Award – Closed November 25
Win up to £1,000 for images which explore the theme of ‘Reclaiming the Future’. Under 30s only.


Thompson Foundation Journalism Now Scholar – Closed December 13
Win an all expenses paid five-week summer course in journalism in London.

New Media Writing Prize, Unicorn Student Award – Closed December 17
£750 awarded for a student producing original work for digital.

New Media Writing Prize, The Skylab Innovation Award – Closed December 17
£500 awarded to the best digital writing on the generator app.

European Press Prize – Closed December 17
Four prizes for excellent in journalism for Council of Europe Member States. €10,000 prize.


EU #Youth4Regions Press Trips – Closed January 6
Travel and expenses covered for several EU press trips across 2020 for young students or journalists.

Orwell Prize for Journalism – Closed January 13
Awarded for sustained reportage or coverage across the year in any medium

Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain’s Social Evils – Closed January 13
Awarded for coverage of an issue which enhances public understanding of a social issue

IRN Awards for News Radio – January 14 (Most Awards), Closed January 21 (Student Award)
Student category for best news or sport is open to all.

Stylist Remarkable Women Awards – Closed January 19
Celebrating the achievements of women in the UK

Girls Impact The World Film Festival – Closed January 20
$5,000 prizes for students under 25 who submit a film on global women’s issues.

The CIVIS Media Prize – Closed January 21
Up to $15,000 awards for work focused on migration, integration, diversity, and democratic culture.

Amnesty Media Awards – Closed January 23
Free to enter the student reporter of the year category, with bursaries for other categories.

The Royal Statistical Society, Statistical Excellence in Journalism Awards – Closed January 24
To reward excellence in using statistics to question, analyse and investigate the issues that affect society.

The Hillman PrizesClosed January 30
Prizes of $5,000 for investigative journalism, which must have been widely accessible to a US audience.

TRACE International Prize for Investigative Reporting Closed January 31
Up to $10,000 for stories reporting on bribery and financial crime.

Association of British Science Writers – Closes January 31
Student Science Journalist of the Year Category offering £200 Prize

NewsAwards 2020Closes January 31
Celebrating the best in news media print, technology and business innovation.


Piazza Grande Religion Journalism Awards – Closed February 28
A €2,500 prize for the best reporting in Europe and the Mediterranean Basin. 

The Hugo Young Award – Closed February 7
A scheme by the Guardian to encourage fresh new writing in political journalism from postgraduate students. £500 in cash and a chance to shadow a lobby reporter.

The Sigma Awards for Data JournalismClosed February 3
To reward exceptional data journalism across several categories, winning an all-expenses-covered trip to the International Journalism Festival in Perugia.

The Hugh Cudlipp AwardClosed February 14
Award for student journalists and recent graduates for high quality journalism, with prizes of up to £1,000.

The Wincott AwardsClosed February 14
Under 28s can win £1,000 for work on business, economics and finance.

UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom PrizeClosed February 15
Up to $25,000 for journalists or organisations making a significant contribution to press freedom, especially in high risk areas.

Matthew Power Literary Reporting Award – Closed February 19
Win $12,500 plus research privileges and office space in New York.

Rupert Cornwell Award for Foreign Reporting – Closed February 21
£5,000 for a reporting project in North America, Europe or the old Soviet Union

ICFJ Knight International Journalism AwardClosed February 21
Award for pioneering coverage or media innovation, with prizes of up to $10,000.

NaSTA Student TV AwardsClosed February 23
Annual TV awards for young people part of a NaSTA affiliated station. 

BBC Arabic Young Journalist Award – Expected to Re-Open in February
Given to a non-fiction filmmaker or digital journalist between 18-30 

Sarah Corp Fellowship – Expected To Re-Open In February
A year-long programme in memory of the Channel 4 journalist. Spend six months at the Channel 4 foreign desk in London, and six months in their Washington DC Bureau.

Cassandra Jardine Memorial Prize – Expected To Re-open in February
Up to £1,000 for a woman under 25, awarded for a feature article.

New Economy Spokesperson Training Scheme – Expected to Re-Open in February
Two-day training scheme to become an on-air expert


SPA Awards for Student Journalism – Closed March 1
Annual student journalism awards for young people part of a SPA affiliated publication.

IPG Independent Publishing Awards – Closed March 5
12 different awards to recognise the achievements of independent publishers in the UK and Ireland. 

WeAreTheCity Rising Stars – Closed March 8
Recognising the top 100 women across all industries, with professional development rewards.

InterAction Photography Contest – Closed March 11
Prizes of up to $1,000 for powerful humanitarian photography. 

Lorenzo Natali Journalism Prize –  Closed March 15
Awards of $10,803 for excellent reporting on sustainable development, democracy and human rights around the world.

AGU’s Science Journalism Awards –  Closed March 15
Nominations are open for awards in science news reporting and science feature writing. 

Washington Post Stern FellowshipClosed March 27
A three-month fellowship for experienced journalists at the Washington Post

Theatre Photograph of the Year – Closed March 30
Cash prizes for amateur and professional photographers alike who have snapped gorgeous images of their favourite theatre. 

Mary Mulvihill AwardClosed March 31
Awards €2,000 to a student at a HE institution in Ireland for work about science and industry.

IPSE Freelancer of the Year Awards – Expected to Re-Open in March
Up to £5,000 prize for an individual or organisations freelancing or supporting the sector.

Mencap Student Journalism Awards – Expected to Re-Open in March
For young journalists raising issues surrounding learning disabilities.

The Football Blogging Awards – Expected to Re-Open in March
To reward the best football bloggers across various categories.

Scottish Student Journalism Awards – Expected to Re-Open in March
Annual awards for student journalists in Scotland.

John Schofield Trust Mentoring Scheme – Expected to Re-Open in March
Mentoring scheme for young journalists working in TV and film


The Private Eye Paul Foot Award  – Closed April 1
£5,000 award to a journalist, group of journalists or publication for investigative and campaigning journalism.

Substack Independent Writer Grant Program – Closed April 7
Grants of $500 to $5,000 to support independent writers who are affected by the Coronavirus outbreak

Index On Censorship Fellowship – Closed April 16
Winners receive 12 months of capacity building, coaching and strategic support.

Kent Press & Broadcast AwardsCloses April 24
15 categories for journalism produced by individuals and websites in Kent.

Print Futures Awards & Scholars – Closes April 26
A grant of up to £1,500 for apprentices, workers or students aged 18-30 to support training in printing or publishing.

Creative Access & Getty Images Photojournalism Scholarship – Closes April 27 
Students from a BAME background can win around £8000 to go toward training, equipment or education for a career in photojournalism. 

MHP 30 to Watch Under 30 – Young Journalists – Closes April 30
To recognise young people, working full-time in the media from a diverse range of backgrounds.

One Young World Journalist of the Year – Closed April 30
Highlighting the work of five promising young journalists between the ages of 18 to 35 from around the world

Anthony Howard Political Prize – Suspended to 2021
Win a £25,000 prize and placements at the New Statesman, The Observer and The Times.

Other Schemes

There are a number of other schemes we are aware have run in the past but we are unable to provide details of when or if they will re-open at present. We will provide new information as soon as it becomes available.

These schemes are:

  • UK Blog Awards (Now Closed)
  • Column Idol (The Sun)
  • Guardian Student Media Awards
  • Magazine Academy Awards
  • Words by Women Awards
  • Wyn Harness Prize (The Independent)
  • Travelex Best New Travel Writer
  • Sensora Music Journalism Bursary
  • David Welch Sports Award