Applications are now open for Total Newsroom Training — IRE’s grant-funded, customized training program that is returning for its sixth year.

IRE’s experienced trainers will visit selected newsrooms for two days of intense, in-house investigative training — at no cost. Spots in the program are limited and awarded on a competitive basis.

Total Newsroom Training is meant to help small to medium-size news organizations, and IRE customizes training based on the needs of the organization. These sessions can include web tools, background techniques and hands-on data training.

The program is designed to increase the ability of news organizations to provide watchdog and enterprise coverage for their communities, and to produce work that can lead to change and improvements.

The newsroom must be committed to allowing a significant portion of its staff attend the full two days of training and to tracking their progress after the training. The winning newsrooms will attend a webinar later in the year to showcase their work.

The deadline for applications is Sept. 23. The application form must be filled out by the editor, news director or equivalent.

“For five years, IRE has provided valuable watchdog training to dozens of small and medium newsrooms through our TNT program,” said Doug Haddix, IRE executive director. “We’re thrilled to begin the sixth year of this program so that IRE can continue to help journalists in smaller markets sharpen their watchdog teeth and produce stories with high impact.”

IRE also awards fellowships for TNT alumni to attend one of IRE’s annual CAR boot camps. Applications will open soon for TNT alumni to attend boot camp in January. The award covers much of the cost of attending the week-long data training session in Columbia, Missouri.