Work with us
The Lawrence Times news team is small but mighty. We do our best to go above and beyond as often as we can, especially considering our limited resources.
Although we do not usually have full-time positions available, we are generally looking to meet and connect with folks who could fit in on our team on a part-time or freelance basis.
We infrequently post new open positions. Instead, we prefer to grow our team when it’s possible, practical, and when we find the right person — or when the right person finds us. Most of our core team members originally joined the staff because they just happened to send an email at the right time and got our attention.
Here’s some info to give you an idea of who we’re looking to work with, what working with us might look like, and how to get involved if you think you might be a good fit. This page will likely be updated on occasion depending on our needs as they change and evolve. (Remember, we’ve only been publishing since March 2021, so we’re still a fairly new thing!)
Nothing here is meant to discourage anyone who wants to work with us from reaching out, even if you don’t quite fit what we’ve written here.
Who we’re looking for:
• Journalists who genuinely care about the Lawrence-Douglas County community and the impact of their work, and who treat others respectfully and professionally.
• Journalists who have experience with news writing and news production, whether that’s at a student publication, in a professional newsroom or through a class, and who understand the differences and boundaries between journalism and activism.
• We are open to folks whose focus is generally on multimedia, but basic writing skills are essential — for instance, photojournalists should be able to gather information to write cutlines when needed; videojournalists should be able to write a suggested headline and a few paragraphs to accompany a video.
• People who fit in well with our current team members, whose skills complement the team, and who can be team players.
• People who bring a unique perspective to the team and are willing to express themselves while showing respect for other team members.
• Curious people who are motivated to find and cover stories of all kinds.
What working with us could look like:
• We have a robust team of freelancers; some take assignments as frequently as multiple assignments per week, and others work as infrequently as once every few months or so. We like to give people flexibility to work with us when they can.
• We have some freelancers who are paid on a per-assignment basis, and other folks who work for hourly pay (all as independent contractors).
• We love it when folks pitch their own story ideas to us, but there will also be assignments up for grabs and plenty of events that we’ll want to cover.
• We operate remotely, meaning everybody works from wherever they choose, but there will be in-person meetings and workdays, especially when we’re all actively collaborating on big news stories.
• We cover a wide range of community news — everything from in-depth investigative reporting on corruption to literal fluff pieces about kittens. But we are hyperlocal, and we prefer our coverage to stick to topics and issues that aren’t covered anywhere else in a way that is accessible to community members.
• We want journalists to pursue stories and projects that interest them, hone their skills and flourish with us.
If you’re interested:
Firstly — thank you! Please send us an email us at Hello (at) LawrenceKSTimes (dot) com with at least the following (bearing in mind that we’re not looking for novels and brevity is a good thing):
• Your name, pronouns and whether you live in Lawrence or thereabouts;
• A little bit about your background — as a person and/or as a journalist (we care about both), and as much or as little as you’d like to share;
• What you’re interested in covering, or what you think you might want to cover for us;
• A few clips you’re proud of: links or PDFs of articles you’ve written, photos/videos you’ve taken, etc., if you have them (if not, any work example is better than none — think school assignments, personal blogs, and so forth);
• A résumé, if you have one;
• Anything else you think might be good for us to know (your favorite color, zodiac sign, social media links, how many cats you have, whatever); and
• Your general availability — which days of the week and hours you’re typically available, if possible, and/or if you’re a student, when you might want to start working with us (now, next semester, over a break, etc.). This is not set in stone, and we understand if your availability fluctuates — we’re just trying to get a basic idea of how our schedules might align.
Want to stand out?
• A great way to get our attention is to send a solid pitch for a story you would like to cover for the Times.
• Show us that you consistently pay attention to what our team does and how we do it. Also, it sure doesn’t hurt to show that you actually read this page 🙂
Again, we are a very small team and we’re stretched pretty thin, but we will get back to you as soon as we can to try to set up a meeting (via video or in person) to get to know you better. Consider it a job interview, but know that we also want you to ask questions to decide whether this is a team you want to join — you can interview us, too.
If you don’t hear back within two or three days, please don’t give up! We may have missed your email, so please feel free to email us again to nudge us.
If you have specific questions about working with us, the best way to reach out is by emailing us at hello (at) LawrenceKSTimes (dot) com. (Don’t forget the “KS”, or your email won’t reach us!)
And please stick to reaching out via that email address as opposed to trying via social media, individual team members, etc., to help us stay organized. Thank you!