Drawing your attention to a job opportunity at Syracuse University. Officially, the title is research professor of data and investigative journalism, and the posting is here. But it's really a great opportunity for a data reporter.
About half of the job is finding stories in the TRAC data, a treasure trove of federal documents on everything from FBI, ATF and DEA data to immigration cases; from judge sentencing records to the largely-untapped civil cases database. That means mining the data for trends and writing a couple of paragraphs for TRAC clients, which range from newsrooms to U.S. Supreme Court justices.
The second half of the job is highly flexible. It could be taking a few of those trends and developing them into investigative stories with a media partner. It could be teaching a class at Newhouse. It could be taking on a managing role as an assistant director of TRAC. Or it could be a combination of all of those. You'll work with me, TRAC and Newhouse to explore possibilities.
What's definitely needed: a strong ability to wrangle lots of data and a good news sense. Experience with federal government and FOIAs is a plus, but you'll learn it quickly if you don't. The data is in SAS, which you'll eventually need to become familiar with. An advanced degree is not required, and technically it's a three-year appointment. But that's renewable, it's similar to other professors of practice and TRAC has never laid anyone off. A willingness to try new things is important; so is living in Syracuse.
The pay is competitive, and benefits include tuition for kids and a good retirement package, plus a lighter summer schedule depending on how you structure the job. And Syracuse is a lot nicer than you might think - with mountains, beautiful lakes and skiing all nearby; and Toronto, Montreal and NYC a few hours away.
This is a great opportunity for a recent J-school grad student with solid data chops, or a more experienced data reporter looking for a new gig.
Any questions? Feel free to contact me off list, firstname.lastname@example.org or 571-435-6636.
Jodi Upton | Knight Chair, Data and Explanatory Journalism