Under the authority of the applicable provisions of the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, as amended, and the United States International Broadcasting Act of 1994, the United States Agency for Global Media (USAGM) organized and hosted a two-week fellowship program in the U.S. for Eda Ozdemir, journalist and show host from VOA’s affiliate, Ekoturk TV in Turkey. The program aimed to showcase U.S. media and VOA’s best journalistic practices and content and provide hands-on training for an affiliated TV network in Turkey at the time of a new wave of censorship for Turkish media in 2021.
As part of her itinerary in the U.S., Eda spent time with VOA’s Turkish Service and English Newsroom in Washington, D.C., and New York Bureau. She worked with VOA journalists to shoot, produce and broadcast content for Ekoturk TV. At the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ)’s The Deadline Club in New York, Eda talked about censorship, ethical journalism and other issues with a reporter from The Wall Street Journal, a professor from New York University (NYU), a columnist from USA Today, and other journalists. “It was a once in a lifetime experience for sure,” Ozdemir shared at the end of her two-week fellowship in Washington, D.C.