The Alexia Foundation offers production grants to students and professional photographers to give them the financial ability to produce substantial stories that drive change in the effort to make the world a better place. Students also get scholarship opportunities. See rules below for details on each.
The application deadline for the Professional Grant is Thursday, February 1, 2018 at midnight Eastern U.S. Time.
The deadline for the Student Grants is Thursday, March 1, 2018, at midnight Eastern U.S. Time.
Winners will be announced on or about April 2, 2018. Judging takes place at
Syracuse University March 23 and 24 at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public
Communications. The public is invited to attend.
Your application must include the items listed below – there is no form to fill out
in advance. Once those are ready, click the submit button at right and follow
instructions from there. Professionals will be prompted to pay the $50 application fee there.
Submit written elements as PDF documents.
1. Synopsis: In not more than twenty-five (25) words, write a synopsis of your
2. Proposal: A written proposal of not more than 700 words (3500 characters) to produce a
body of work comprised of still or motion body of work that will promote world
peace and cultural understanding. Nearly all previous grant recipients have
proposed projects that were already in progress.
The most effective proposals start by telling a story that takes the reader to the
setting and engages them emotionally. Then describe why the project is
important. Then explain how you will accomplish the project. Conclude by
explaining the outcomes of the project, how it will be used, ideally to bring about
change. Evidence that you have created partnerships with other organizations is
Do not put your name or other identifying information on your proposal. All
applications will be judged anonymously.
Only one application per person each year will be accepted.
For helpful tips on writing a proposal, see our blog post with National Geographic Director of Photography and former Alexia grant judge Sarah Leen.
3. Resume: A resume which shall include your email address, phone numbers
and address along with the names, titles and phone numbers of three (3)
references. Do not send any letters of recommendation.
Photographs - What and How To Submit
Submit a body of work consisting of up to twenty (20) photographs. Images
should demonstrate your ability to accomplish your proposed project. If you
submit photos that are not related to your proposal, they must have been taken
within the past two (2) years. There is no time limit on pictures that relate directly
to your story proposal.
Image Preparation: Digital photo files must be formatted as medium-quality
JPEG images at 5000 pixels at the longest dimension at 72 dpi. Each image
must have a caption in the file’s metadata/exif caption field. Do not include your
name in captions or exif fields. You may provide URLs for no more than two (2)
of your motion pieces - which should reflect your proposed project or a topic or
approach that is similar to your proposed subject.
Ethical Standards: The Alexia Foundation follows ethical photojournalistic
standards as set forth by organizations such as the National Press
Photographers Association, World Press Photo and Pictures of the Year
International. Images may not be altered to change the structural integrity of
photographed scenes. Toning of images - saturation, contrast, vignetting,
dynamic range, etc. - must be within reasonable limits, as determined by the
panel of judges.
For Staff Photographers:
If you are a staff photographer: Professional Grant applicants who are staff
photographers must provide written permission from their employer granting
them a leave of absence of approximately three (3) months over the course of a
year to allow time to complete their project. It is not necessary for this time to be
taken in a single block. While all other application elements will be submitted
online, the letter of permission must be mailed to:
The Alexia Grant Competition
S.I. Newhouse School of Communications
215 University Place
Syracuse, NY 13244