College students: Paid Inquirer writing opportunity

Philly area college students: The Philadelphia Inquirer is soliciting op-eds from your perspectives. You’ll be paid if your op-ed is published. See this message from Inquirer deputy opinion editor Erica Palan:

For an upcoming special feature in the Sunday Currents section, the Philadelphia Inquirer Opinion Department is looking for op-eds written by students at Philly-area colleges and universities. 

Op-eds are opinionated articles that are about 500-700 words, expressing a personal opinion supported by facts. Op-eds often focus on issues, though we sometimes accept personal essays if the piece speaks to a larger news issue. For example, we don’t want an essay about how doing a MudRun changed your life or how the Lizzo album empowers you — but we might be interested in a first-person piece that talks about your experience as a person of color on a majority white campus (or vice versa) or the challenges of being a conservative student on a largely liberal campus (or vice versa) or how it feels to be the child of undocumented immigrant parents. 

There are plenty of evergreen topics (social justice reform, food insecurity, the impact of student debt, the opioid crisis, gun control, immigration issues, charter schools, mental health — this list goes on and on and on) but a really successful piece will have a timely news hook, as well as a unique, thoughtful and well-supported point of view.

Some recent examples of pieces we’ve published, written by undergraduate students: 

Don’t sweat it if you haven’t written an op-ed before. Our editors are used to working with first-time writers and if your piece is accepted, we’ll work closely with you to fine tune your piece. 

If we publish your piece, we’ll pay you $50. 

Interested? Send a draft of a piece to by Wednesday, August 21 at midnight. Specifics:

    • Please put STUDENT SUBMISSION and your topic in the subject line. 
    • Include your phone number so we can reach you easily if your piece is accepted. 
    • Include what school you attend, your major and when you expect to graduate.

Questions/concerns/half-baked ideas that need flushing out? You can send those emails to me, too. I’ll do my best to get back to everyone.