The Asian American Journalists Association’s Sports Task Force is proud to announce Anish Vasudevan as the recipient of the 2022 Al Young Sports Journalism Scholarship.
Vasudevan is a sophomore at Syracuse University pursuing a Magazine, News & Digital Journalism major. He is the seventh winner of this award, second consecutive sophomore and second journalism student from Syracuse, following the footsteps of his friend, Roshan Fernandez (2020).
The 19-year-old Indian American serves as the assistant sports editor at The Daily Orange student-run newspaper and beat writer for Syracuse’s storied lacrosse program.
Vasudevan, a second-time applicant, was shocked when he received the news of winning the Al Young Sports Journalism Scholarship.
“I was walking in a snowstorm when I got a call,” Vasudevan said. “It was Al and I was just in disbelief. It’s amazing knowing of his status and how he has paved the way. The fact he took the time to read my story and just receiving his recognition is amazing.”
The Al Young Sports Journalism Scholarship is a $2,000 award that celebrates the nation’s first Asian American sportswriter at a metro daily newspaper who also blazed a trail as the first to cover the NFL as a beat writer and first to write a weekly column focused on women’s sports. During his four-decade career, Young was a writer and editor at several publications, including the Boston Globe, USA Today and the New York Daily News, before retiring in 2012.
“Besides his writing skills,” said Young, a founding member of AAJA’s Sports Task Force, “what impressed me was the epiphany Anish related in his essay about writing the story on Syracuse football player Ahmad Masood, one of the school’s rare Asian American athletes of similar South Asian descent and background as himself.”
Vasudevan said his goal was to give Masood a voice to represent his Pakistani heritage at a campus where Asian American students make up less than 7% of the school’s population. The statistic came as a culture shock to Vasudevan, who graduated from Monte Vista High School in Cupterino, CA that had a 90% Asian student body, including 50% Indian American.
Vasudevan further saw that lack of diversity while covering games at the Carrier Dome at Syracuse, and while shadowing a reporter at San Francisco 49ers training camp.
“Anish realized then that his role and mission moving forward as a journalist of color was to use his platform, in newsrooms that often lack diversity, to provide vital insight necessary to highlight story of minority athletes,” Young said.
“Hopefully winning this scholarship will help Anish move another step closer to his sports career goals.”
Vasudevan said he’s fired up to receive the scholarship and aspires to start a pop culture magazine for Syracuse. After graduation, he dreams of writing “the weirdest and most creative leads” for an outlet such as The Ringer, marrying his passions for sports and pop culture.
“I’m grateful for everything,” said Vasudevan. “I’ve had a lot of people help me along the way. Getting recognition from somebody with Al’s stature is amazing. You wouldn’t be able to tell me in ninth grade that I would get something like this. I can’t be more thankful and grateful.”
For additional information regarding AAJA’s scholarship/fellowship opportunities, please visit : www.aaja.org/news-and-resources/scholarships-internships/.
The Asian American Journalists Association’s Sports Task Force is proud to announce Aryanna Prasad as the recipient of the 2022 Michael Kim Broadcast Journalism Fellowship.
Prasad, a graduate of Louisiana State University, is the second recipient of the $2,000 grant, which is intended to support an early career sports broadcast journalist.
“Aryanna’s passion and dedication was visible across her application,” STF chairman Josh Tolentino said. “Michael Kim created opportunities for so many of us, and Aryanna has made it clear she embodies AAJA STF’s mission of ensuring there’s equal and fair AAPI representation in all newsrooms.”
When Prasad first came across the fellowship, she recommended young journalists apply, suggesting it would be a good opportunity for them to advance their careers. Prasad soon realized she was eligible herself, having redirected her career to sports media during the pandemic.
“It’s a blessing, and it’s really inspiring,” said Prasad on receiving the fellowship. “I saw myself as a non-traditional applicant…[but] I still have so much to learn, and I could learn from someone like Michael Kim.”
Kim is a groundbreaking sports anchor who opened doors for the Asian community at the Worldwide Leader. Kim served as an anchor at ESPN’s SportsCenter for 17 years and was one of the original anchors who helped launch ESPNNews. Now working at Stadium on Marquee Sports Network, Kim has been a proud member of AAJA for decades and is a Sports Task Force legend who has supported the group from its inception.
“Aryanna’s perseverance and determination are precisely the qualities that this fellowship is set up to reward and support,” said Kim, a founding STF board member. “How can you not be moved and inspired by her story? Congratulations Aryanna!”
Prasad, an Associate Editor at Fansided, said she plans to use the scholarship funds to invest in camera equipment and further her broadcast career. She studied political communications and international studies at LSU. Prasad is also an alumnus of AAJA’s distinguished VOICES program.
Her passions include reporting on the intersection between sports, politics and culture. Women’s representation and opportunity in sports media are issues Prasad cares about deeply.
“There are always these moments in sports where it can feel isolating to be an Asian American woman,” Prasad said. “And now I will always have this to say, that someone supports me and believes in me and the stories that I’m telling.”
For additional information regarding AAJA’s scholarship/fellowship opportunities, please visit: www.aaja.org/news-and-resources/scholarships-internships/
The Asian American Journalists Association’s Sports Task Force is pleased to announce Amna Subhan and Nathan Han as the recipients of the 2022 Jimmie & Suey Fong Yee Fellowship, generously funded by prominent sports agent Don Yee.
The $2,000 grants will go toward registration for the 2022 AAJA national convention, which is scheduled to be held this summer in Los Angeles, and also fund expenses associated with reporting a story about Asians or Asian Americans in sports that the two recipients pitched as part of their applications. Han and Subhan are the 12th and 13th overall recipients of the fellowship.
“Amna and Nathan emerged from a strong pool of applicants,” STF chairman Josh Tolentino said. “The Sports Task Force is so grateful for Don Yee’s support of diversity in sports journalism. His contributions will help Amna and Nathan take further steps in accomplishing their dreams and goals.”
Subhan is a senior studying sports journalism at Arizona State University. She grew up in a small town in Arizona and struggled to find her place as a Pakistani-American, but found a sense of belonging in sports, and is dedicated to cementing a place for South Asian women in the industry, she said.
Subhan currently works for NCAA Digital with Turner Sports’ editorial team. This upcoming summer, she’s set to intern with Sports Illustrated as an Association for Women in Sports Media scholarship recipient.
Through the Jimmie & Suey Fong Yee Fellowship, Subahn will collaborate with AAJA to produce a story on the growth of women’s cricket breaking cultural barriers in South Asia.
Han is a junior studying journalism and social work at the University of Texas at Austin. Born and raised in Dallas, he found his passion for sports journalism as an intern for the Dallas Morning News. Han covers football, basketball and baseball for the Daily Texan, the student newspaper at UT, and is the president of the AAJA-UT student chapter.
Han’s story pitch for the Jimmie & Suey Fong Yee Fellowship revolves around the role ping-pong has played in the lives of many Chinese immigrants and Asian Americans by looking back at the history of ping-pong in China and ping-pong diplomacy.
Subhan and Han are both members of the distinguished Sports Journalism Institute, whose mission is to increase diversity in the nation’s sports media. As a 2021 graduate of SJI, Subhan interned with the Southern California Newsgroup covering the Los Angeles Sparks for 11 different newspapers around the area including the Orange County Register and LA Daily News. Upon completion of his spring semester, Han will intern at the Kansas City Star, as part of this year’s SJI class.
Over the course of a decorated 34-year career, Yee has represented many of the country’s most accomplished football players and coaches, as well as athletes from a wide range of Olympic and action sports. His clientele includes Tom Brady, Jimmy Garappolo, Julian Edelman and Sean Payton. Yee, who also founded HUB Football, is a longtime supporter of AAJA’s Sports Task Force; this year, he generously doubled his contribution for the Fellowship, which is named in honor of Yee’s parents.
Yee said he was very impressed by Subhan and Han’s background and story pitches.
“The sports world now is much more globally connected, and I want to do what I can to provide more opportunity to a wider range of storytellers that may bring a more global perspective,” Yee said. “The worldwide Asian population is enormous, and there are so many undiscovered stories that would be exciting to hear.”
For additional information regarding AAJA’s scholarship/fellowship opportunities, please visit: www.aaja.org/news-and-resources/scholarships-internships/
On Tuesday evening, during a broadcast of the Los Angeles Angels and Detroit Tigers game, Tigers’ analyst Jack Morris used a mocking Asian accent in reference to the Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, a Japanese-born player. Morris’ attempt to apologize was insensitive and ignorant, referencing only the words he chose but not the stereotypical, racist accent he used.
The Asian American Journalists Association Sports Task Force is disappointed and disturbed by Morris’ attempt to provide analysis on a live broadcast in this manner, especially at a time when Asians in the United States are experiencing a sharp increase in anti-Asian hate, which is resulting in harassment and attacks.
In his analysis, would Morris have used an accent for an African American player? A Hispanic or Latin player? An Irish or Italian player? Morris, a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame, should be held to a higher standard while serving a regional and national audience.
We emphasize the importance of listening, empathy and cultural awareness. The AAJA Sports Task Force stands ready to serve as a resource for media outlets on how to cover Asian and Asian American athletes and welcome and encourage any requests for additional feedback or input on this subject. AAJA calls on national and local media outlets to prioritize coverage of this ongoing violence and hate against AAPIs, and to empower their journalists to report on these incidents immediately, accurately and comprehensively.
The Asian American Journalists Association Sports Task Force was disappointed to hear Stephen A. Smith’s remarks on the Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, a Japanese-born player, during the July 12th “First Take” on ESPN.
Smith’s comments highlighted the continual and hurtful “foreigner” and “other” perception many Asian American and Pacific Islanders continue to endure today.
Smith has a tremendous voice and platform, and we appreciate his apology. During a time of horrific rates of anti-Asian attacks and xenophobia in our country, we emphasize the importance of listening, empathy and cultural awareness.
The AAJA Sports Task Force stands ready to serve as a resource for media outlets on how to cover Asian and Asian American athletes and welcome and encourage any requests for additional feedback or input on this subject. AAJA calls on national and local media outlets to prioritize coverage of this ongoing violence and hate against AAPIs, and to empower their journalists to report on these incidents immediately, accurately and comprehensively.
Journalists can also utilize AAJA’s official guidance on covering Asia and Asian Americans.
By Sandeep Chandok
The Asian American Journalists Association’s Sports Task Force is proud to announce Jason Omori as the inaugural recipient of the group’s Bleacher Report Internship.
Omori, a sophomore at Georgetown University, will spend the summer working for Bleacher Report, a premier sports media organization, with a focus on social content. He will also be awarded a $5,000 scholarship.
“Jason emerged from a strong pool of qualified candidates,” STF president Josh Tolentino said. “AAJA and the Sports Task Force are grateful for Bleacher Report’s willingness and dedication in creating a scholarship that will directly help the next generation of Asian American sports journalists. We hope to continue to foster young talent, such as Jason, to assure AAPIs are represented across all newsrooms.”
“We’re absolutely thrilled to welcome Jason as the inaugural recipient of the Bleacher Report Social Content internship,” said Varoon Bose, director of special projects for social at B/R and an STF executive board member. “We were extremely impressed with Jason’s work as the Deputy Design Editor for the Hoya newspaper, and we’re looking forward to welcoming him through an internship that we hope represents a long-term partnership between Bleacher Report and the AAJA Sports Task Force.”
Omori, a Los Angeles native, found out he was selected for the internship on a phone call with Tolentino, who started the conversation by asking him if he had any plans for the summer. “Well, I hope so,” Omori responded.
“I was super grateful and super happy and excited that I got it,” Omori said. “I immediately told my family because they were very much involved in helping me write the stuff and get ready for this.”
“We’re proud to build on our longstanding relationship with AAJA by supporting their Sports Task Force and launching this new internship and scholarship,” said Johnita Due, SVP & chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer for WarnerMedia News and Sports (CNN, Turner Sports + BleacherReport and WarnerMedia Studios). “We are committed to amplifying AAPI voices and building a pipeline of talent that will lead us into the future.”
Omori, who is pursuing an American Studies degree from Georgetown, is passionate about sports and the evolving media industry. He says he’s constantly on the B/R app, and loves what the company and brand represents. It’s what led him to apply for the opportunity in the first place.
“Bleacher Report is such a great brand, and I’ve been using it for years,” Omori said. “It’s going to be a cool experience.”
Omori is undecided which area of sports media he wants to focus on, but he’s fascinated by social media and design. He’s expected to graduate in May 2023. Omori serves as deputy design editor for “The Hoya” student newspaper, and he also worked as a sports editor at his high school newspaper.
Omori, a new member of AAJA, hopes the organization will help him launch a successful career in sports journalism.
“I think between the networking opportunities that AAJA provides and this specific role, which is not super singular, will let me explore, figure out and hone in on what it’s like to work on a social content team.”
Earlier today, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Carlton Davis posted a tweet that included a derogatory term historically used to refer to Asians in the early 1900s. The Asian American Journalists Association Sports Task Force is disappointed by his sentiment, especially at a time when Asians in the United States are experiencing a sharp increase in anti-Asian hate which has resulted in harassment and attacks.
“Gook” is a hateful slur and is listed in AAJA’s official guidance on covering Asia and Asian Americans. The AAJA STF appreciates the swift response by the Buccaneers’ organization to address this matter. We also acknowledge Davis’ apology and look forward to seeing how he will help the affected communities.
AAJA calls on national and local media outlets to prioritize coverage of this ongoing violence and hate against AAPIs, and to empower their journalists to report on these incidents immediately, accurately and comprehensively. AAJA National has also put together a list of related mental health resources that you can find here.
The mission of the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) Sports Task Force (STF) is to elevate
the voices of Asian Americans in sports and support aspiring Asian American sports journalists across
multiple media platforms through mentorship and financial opportunities. Powered by the Asian
American Journalists Association, STF forges relationships between leading AAPI media professionals
and students and entry-level professionals seeking to network and hone their skills.
In partnership with AAJA STF, Bleacher Report is offering an exciting internship opportunity that will
allow the selected candidate to explore the world of sports media, while also tapping into the resources
and networks that directly speak to the AAJA STF mission. In conjunction with the paid internship, the
selected candidate will be receiving a $5000 AAJA STF x B/R scholarship.
WarnerMedia is a leading media and entertainment company that creates and distributes premium and
popular content from a diverse array of talented storytellers and journalists to global audiences through
its consumer brands including: HBO, HBO Max, Warner Bros., TNT, TBS, truTV, CNN, DC Entertainment,
New Line, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Turner Classic Movies and others.
Bleacher Report, a WarnerMedia company, makes it as easy as possible to be a sports fan by defining
the moments that matter. Empowering, personal and community driven, its vision for making sports
bigger than the game has led to unmatched engagement on social media, where it consistently ranks as
the No. 1 digital and social brand. Bleacher Report also provides an industry-leading fan experience on
mobile devices through its unparalleled app experience. This year Bleacher Report was ranked as one of
the ‘World’s Most Innovative Companies’ by Fast Company.
With exposure to the DEI resources at WM, the selected intern will be dedicated to the B/R Social
Content team and paired with a mentor to guide them through navigating the sports industry, aligning
with the AAJA STF mission.
The Social Content team is responsible for brainstorming and producing short-form social content along
with our design team against the largest moments in sports and culture. This shared-resources team
supports the many portfolios at Bleacher Report and oversees content production including but not
limited to graphics, illustrations, animations, short-form video executions and more.
• Supporting associate producers, producers and senior producers to brainstorm, develop and
produce sport-specific content including but not limited to NBA, NFL, College Sports,
• Gambling, MLB, Soccer, Combat Sports and more.
• Compiling notes, images and footage to guide content though the back end of production
• Write basic scripts for short-form content executions to live on Twitter, Facebook,
Instagram, Instagram Stories, YouTube and TikTok
• Have an understanding of content creation in the social space, social media platforms, and
• Have experience working with content calendars and creating basic content executions for
large sports brand social media accounts
• Experience in journalism/sports preferred but not required
• Have extensive knowledge and an extreme passion for internet sports culture
• Our 10-week summer internship program will kick off June 7 and end on or before
• The intern is expected to work on a full-time schedule (40 hours/week) during normal business hours
• The paid internship will be entirely remote in light of COVID-19 and with your health and safety
in mind. There will be extensive programming accommodated for a virtual environment, so you
can make the most of your time at Bleacher Report and learn the ins-and-outs of our exciting
industry alongside your fellow interns
• The intern will be paid a competitive hourly wage
• Upon successful completion of the internship, the selected intern will receive a $5000 AAJA STF x B/R Scholarship
• Only current students (undergraduate or graduate programs) or recent graduates (within 6
months of applying) are eligible for the internship
• AAJA membership required for the selected candidate
• Cover letter
• Work samples
THE APPLICATION DEADLINE IS FRIDAY, APRIL 16 @ 12pm ET / 9am PT.
Questions? Email April Siruno at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Warner Media, LLC and its subsidiaries are equal opportunity employers. Qualified candidates will
receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender,
sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, mental or physical disability, and genetic
information, marital status, citizenship status, military status, protected veteran status or any other
category protected by law.
By Sandeep Chandok
The Asian American Journalists Association’s Sports Task Force is proud to announce Paulina Jeng as the inaugural winner of the 2021 Michael Kim Broadcast Fellowship.
Jeng, a 2020 University of California Berkeley graduate, is the first-ever recipient of the $2,000 award, intended to support an early career sports broadcast journalist.
“I am thrilled with the judging committee’s choice of Paulina as the inaugural recipient of this fellowship,” Kim said. “She represents everything this award is and should be. I can’t wait to see where her career takes her.”
“Paulina emerged from a very strong pool of candidates,” STF president Josh Tolentino said. “Our 2021 scholarship/fellowship recipient pool drew the most applicants since STF began offering financial opportunities more than six years ago – a testament to the group’s rapid growth and also to our commitment in helping develop the next generation of AAPI sports journalists.
“Michael Kim is a legend in our industry and we are so excited to introduce Paulina as the inaugural recipient of the Michael Kim Broadcast Fellowship.”
Jeng – also a past recipient of the STF’s ESPN internship (2019) – received the news that she had won the Michael Kim Fellowship STF scholarship while she was in her native Taiwan.
“It took me a minute to process when Josh told me,” Jeng said. “I was kind of still in shock and wasn’t expecting it. But I was very happy and my mom is here with me in Taiwan so I was very excited to tell her and share the news with the rest of my family.”
Jeng said she felt the Kim fellowship resonated with her background because of her passion for digital broadcast.
“I felt that this one was aligned with what I’ve been wanting to do and what I hope to do in the future,” Jeng said. “And of course Michael Kim being Michael Kim, I was very excited to apply for something that was in his honor. He’s been a role model for a lot of journalists so being able to do something with his support meant a lot.”
Jeng said it’s powerful to not only see other people who look like her in the industry, but also Asian American athletes making strides and becoming more prominent figures as well.
“It means a lot to be in this space in a time where people are a lot more cognizant of how different experiences are for women in pretty much any industry and celebrating that,” Jeng said. “For women to get that support from allies is really important and I’m excited to see more women come in this industry.”
Kim is a groundbreaking anchor who opened doors for the Asian community at the Worldwide Leader in Sports. Kim was an anchor at ESPN’s SportsCenter for 17 years and was one of the original anchors who launched the innovative ESPNNews. Now working as the anchor of The Stadium on Marquee Sports Network, Kim has been a proud member of AAJA for decades and is a Sports Task Force legend who has supported the group from its inception.
Jeng said joining the Asian American Journalists Association has been instrumental to her career.
“Being a part of AAJA has been one of the best investments of my time professionally,” Jeng said. “It’s very powerful to be amongst people who understand your struggles in a very detailed way.
“It builds a lot of confidence and a lot of community as well. It’s an honor, really, to be in a community of outstanding journalists who not only have your back, but also believe you have what it takes to succeed.”
2021 Michael Kim Broadcast Fellowship judging panel
– Tommy Tran, CBS Sports HQ
– Lily Zhao, FOX6 Milwaukee
– Melissa Kim, WBAL 1090
– Michele Steele, ESPN
– Cameron Kim, NBC Sports
By Tami Nguyen
The Asian American Journalists Association’s Sports Task Force is proud to announce Susan Wong as the 2021 recipient of the Al Young Sports Journalism Scholarship.
Wong, pursuing a sports journalism major with a focus on photojournalism at Arizona State’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communication, is the sixth recipient of this scholarship. Wong is the second woman and the first sophomore to receive the award.
“Susan is a well-rounded champion,” said STF scholarship co-chair Tami Nguyen. “Her dedication to sports photojournalism is admirable, and she is doing all of this so early in her career. It’s great to see more women in sports at AAJA.”
Wong credits her parents’ insistence that she keep a daily journal early in elementary school as the start of her “journalistic journey” as a writer. From there, her interest and participation in sports — including football, where she played in a tackle league — combined with her ability to shoot photos, planted the seed early on for a career in sports media. She joined her high school paper as a reporter; by her junior year, she was promoted to sports editor and eventually, editor-in-chief.
“My favorite thing about journalism is that you have to be so multifaceted and have all these different skills and that’s something I take pride in,” Wong said. “Journalism allows me to be creative and use all my different skills to talk to people, get to know them and tell their stories.”
While working at her high school paper, Wong was assigned to photograph her first football game. The staff photographers were unavailable to cover the story, and this became the first opportunity for Wong to shoot with a DSLR camera.
“The photo editors were really amazed by my photos and that encouraged me to continue shooting photos,” Wong said. “I just fell in love with it. At the end of the day, photos and visuals are just another way to tell stories.”
Wong is involved in several roles on campus. She serves as the president of ASU’s AAJA student chapter, treasurer of the Multicultural Student Journalists Coalition, co-social media chair of the Association for Women in Sports Media and assistant photo director for the Walter Cronkite Sports Network.
“Susan is already being called a ‘rising star’ by many of her Sports Task Force peers,” Young said. “In reading about her accomplishments, it’s easy to see why.”
While Wong was driving to cover a recent softball game, she was informed by Young that she was the recipient of this year’s Al Young Sports Journalism Scholarship.
“I felt so honored that Al took the time to personally call me and congratulate me for it,” Wong said. “It means a lot to me and my family. I called my mom when I got off the phone with Al and she was really happy for me”
The Al Young Scholarship is named after the nation’s first Asian American sportswriter at a metro daily newspaper who also was a trailblazer as the first to cover the NFL as a beat writer and the first to write a weekly column on women’s sports. During a career that spanned four decades, Young was a writer and editor at several publications, including the Boston Globe, USA Today and the New York Daily News, before retiring in 2012.
“Al Young led the path for us Asians in sports journalism,” Wong said. “I want to be able to do the same for young women in our industry.”
“I felt really honored and also really thankful for all the women who have paved the way for the next generation of young women,” Wong said. “I’ve always advocated for more representation in sports and in media, especially those who have been historically underrepresented in these categories.
“It means so much to me, to win such an esteemed award and to win a scholarship that can help me advance my studies, it motivates me to keep working hard and working towards my goals.”
“Hopefully,” Young said. “Winning this scholarship will move her another step closer to realizing that dream.”
2021 Al Young Sports Journalism Scholarship judging panel
– Al Young, retired print journalist
– Leighton Ginn, Ginn and Topics
– Karlo Sy Su, ESPN Los Angeles
– Victoria Lim, Journalist/PR/Content