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Rappler’s Mara Cepeda chosen for Asia Journalism Fellowship

Rappler’s Mara Cepeda chosen for Asia Journalism Fellowship

REPORTING. Mara Cepeda covers the Office of the Vice President and the Senate of the Philippines. She previously covered the House of Representatives.

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She joins 16 other seasoned journalists from across Asia for the prestigious fellowship program

Rappler multimedia reporter Mara Cepeda was selected for the prized journalism program of the Singapore-based Temasek Foundation and the Institute of Policy Studies at the National University of Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.

Cepeda is set to join 16 other seasoned journalists from across the region for the Asia Journalism Fellowship (AJF), which will be held virtually for the first time since its inception in 2009 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Filipino freelance multimedia journalist Ferdinandh Cabrera is also among the AJF 2021 fellows.

They will undergo six weeks of intensive training sessions, seminars, and discussions with experts and AJF alumni on the most pressing issues in Asia. Fellows will be invited to spend a week in Singapore as soon as international travel permits.

Though the fellowship will be shorter in 2021 – it was designed as a three-month residential program in Singapore  – AJF “will try to make the friendships happen and ensure a meaningful fellowship program even though it will be shorter and conducted online.”

“For those determined to make a positive difference at a time when journalism is undergoing rapid change, AJF provides an opportunity to recharge, develop capacities and make new friends for life,” AJF said on its website. 

Cepeda specializes in stories about politics and local governance and has trailed the campaign of opposition candidates in the 2016 and 2019 elections. She covers the Office of the Vice President and the Senate of the Philippines. She previously covered the House of Representatives.

In 2019, Cepeda joined five other Rappler journalists in filing an unprecedented case before the Philippine Supreme Court: a petition to challenge President Rodrigo Duterte’s ban on Rappler reporters from covering his public events.

Aside from Cepeda and Cabrera, the 15 other AJF 2021 fellows are:

  • Md Amdadul Haq, senior reporter for Channel 24 (Bangladesh)
  • Chencho Dena, senior reporter for Business Bhutan (Bhutan)
  • Yea Chenda Khantey, vice chief for Asia Pacific News, Agence Kampuchea Presse (Cambodia)
  • Lu Mei Hui, chief reporter for People Magazine (China)
  • Jane Yuan, editor for Hurun Report (China)
  • Ip Tsz Wa, reporter for Phoenix TV (Hong Kong)
  • Pankaj Upadhyay, special correspondent for Aaj Tak and India Today (India)
  • Aprajita Sharma, freelance financial journalist (India)
  • Dyresti Nocetha, assignment editor for CNN Indonesia (Indonesia)
  • Hayati Nupus, correspondent for Xinhua (Indonesia)
  • Anjali Subedi, freelance journalist (Nepal)
  • Joyce Teo, senior health correspondent for The Straits Times (Singapore)
  • Arun Arokianathan, freelancer and trainer for Internews (Sri Lanka)
  • Rungthip Chotnapalai, freelance TV journalist (Thailand)
  • Pham Thu Huong, reporter and sub-editor for Vietnam News Agency (Vietnam)

– Rappler.com

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