For those of us interesting in pursuing an editing career, whether we’re fresh out of college or looking for a career change, the large quantity of knowledge that you must have and the numerous skills you must posses in order to succeed in the field can seem daunting. Luckily there is a solution, albeit a relatively costly one, in the form of publishing institutes offered by first-rate universities. These programs often take place over the summer and vary from four to six weeks, and they offer an intense crash course in nearly everything you’ll need to know about publishing. As the website for the Columbia Publishing Course makes clear, these institutes provide the amount of information in just a few weeks that would take you a year or so on the job to accumulate.
These institutes are mostly geared to college students who have just graduated with their BA degrees, although adults already in the workplace are welcome to apply to some as well. Please note that the information below is a brief overview of the program, so please refer to the website for more detailed information. Also note that, while these Institutes are among the most popular, there are many more excellent programs available.
The University of Denver Publishing Institute
Current program dates: 07/12/09 – 08/07/09
About blurb from the website: “The Publishing Institute is an intensive, full-time, four-week, graduate-level course that devotes itself to all aspects of book publishing. The Institute offers a wealth of workshops and teaching sessions in editing, marketing, and production, conducted by leading experts from all areas of publishing. During the final week, the Institute provides career counseling sessions to assist students in finding positions in publishing.”
Application process: An application packet must consist of college transcripts, resume, personal statement, and at least two letters of recommendation. There is a non-refundable application fee of $50.00. Current deadline: March 23, 2009
Cost: $4275 for 2009
Housing: students will be placed in double occupancy rooms in the dorms on campus close to the lecture hall where the workshops will take place. Four students will be in a two bedroom suite with a shared kitchen and bath. The cost is approximately $1015 per student. You make cook in the room, but you must provide your own cooking and eating utensils.
Meals: There is a weekday luncheon option for $175 and a weekday three-meal-a-day plan for $455.
Financial aid: There is a small scholarship fund available, but you must present a statement of financial need, which may include documents to best illustrate your need. Federally funded aid is not available due to the short length of the course. Students are encouraged to obtain a direct-to-consumer loan if they require such aid.
Contact information (they will send you an information packet about the Publishing Institute if you are interested):
The Publishing Institute
University of Denver
2000 E Asbury Ave
Denver, Colorado 80208
Summer Publishing Institute at New York University – School of Continuing & Professional Studies
Current program dates: 05/31/09 – 07/10/09
About blurb from the website: “This highly regarded program immerses students in an intense, six-week study of book, magazine, and digital publishing. Combining workshops, strategy sessions, and presentations by some of the leading figures in publishing, this program introduces students to the editorial, marketing, creative, business, sales, and multimedia aspects of the industry.”
Application process: The application packet must include a completed application, two letters of recommendation, school transcripts, a resume/curriculum vitae, and a personal statement. There is a non-refundable application fee of $45.00. Current deadline: March 30, 2009
Cost: $4900 (exclusive of housing fee)
Housing: Housing fees are approximately $275 per week depending on location.
Meals: No meal plans provided
Financial aid: There is no financial aid available for this program
Contact information: An informational brochure is available online as a PDF download. E-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Columbia Publishing Course at Columbia University
Current program dates: 06/14/09 – 07/24/09
About blurb from the website: “For almost sixty years, the course has been training young men and women for careers as editors, literary agents, publishers, designers, publicists, and more. Graduates can be found in every kind of job, at major magazines and publishing houses across the nation.
If you are considering a career in book, magazine, or electronic publishing, the Columbia Publishing Course will give you the tools and the training you need to succeed.”
Application process: The application packet must include a completed application form, a two-page personal statement, two letters of recommendation, and a certified college transcript. There is a $50.00 application fee. Current deadline: March 23, 2009
Cost: Tuition and Workshops: $4,400
Room and board: $2,590
Financial aid: Students that can demonstrate financial need can apply for scholarships. No other financial aid is available.
Contact information: An informational brochure is available online as a PDF download. Email the CPC at email@example.com or you can contact director Lindy Hess at firstname.lastname@example.org or assistant director Susan Caplan at email@example.com.
Columbia Publishing Course
The Graduate School of Journalism
2950 Broadway, MC 3801
New York, NY 10027
Tel.  854-1898
Editing Certificate Program – University of Chicago Graham School
Current program dates: 06/29/09 – 07/27/09
*** Note that these dates are for the summer program. There are several additional courses in editing and publishing that are available during the traditional Fall, Winter, or Spring semester dates.
About blurb from the website: “The Certificate in Editing is a focused sequence of courses designed to prepare the editor for the profession today. In addition to basic, intermediate, and advanced editing, the certificate curriculum offers students courses on the various new technologies that dramatically affect editing, from editing electronically to preparing text for the Internet.”
Cost: $925 for the Basic Manuscript Editing course
Financial aid: There is a 10% seminar discount per person if three or more people from the same organization register. Student loans are available.
Housing: All students are responsible for securing their own accommodations.
Contact information: E-mail questions about the program to firstname.lastname@example.org