Email Opinion Editor Shawn Kelley at email@example.com if you have any questions. Applications are accepted year-round, however, columnists are usually selected before the beginning of the semester.
Columnists write articles (usually about 700 words) on a regular basis and are required to submit their columns by the deadline and come to the DP to edit their stories. However, the best columnists do more than tell stories or argue their opinions — they identify topics relevant to the Penn community, do some research and basic reporting (usually in the form of interviewing Penn students and professors), think critically about what graphics and visuals would contribute to a column's effectiveness and read other columns from the paper and around the web in order to contribute to our mandatory weekly columnist meetings.
We also highly encourage our columnists, in conjuncture with the DP, to utilize social media to promote their columns. This is primarily designed to help columnists reap the maximum benefits of their work by exposing as many people as possible to it.
Being a columnist is hard, time-consuming work. Think carefully before applying. That being said, this position is extremely rewarding. Your writing and reporting skills will improve tremendously, and you will have the rare opportunity to reach thousands of people with every column you write.