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IRE’s Articles of Incorporation provide for five classes of membership:

  • Professional: People substantially engaged in news gathering, presentation or production.
  • Academic: People engaged full-time in research or teaching in the field of journalism.
  • Retired: People who formerly belonged to the professional and/or academic class but have retired from their occupation.
  • Associate: Former professional or academic IRE members who are not retired, individuals engaged part-time in reporting or editing, plus individuals recognized by the Board of Directors for their contributions to IRE or to the field of investigative reporting and editing. Not eligible for voting rights.
  • Student: College students pursuing a degree. Upon graduation, student members may renew their membership at the student price, for up to 3 years. Former professional members returning to college (full or part time) have the option of renewing their membership at the student rate.
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“A lot of times journalism can be a really competitive and who-can-get-it-first type of industry, but that’s not IRE, and that’s not the experience I’ve had. That collaboration makes me feel empowered to keep doing what I’m doing.”
- Naomi Harris, The Capital Gazette

Member Benefits

Get to the bottom of your story and the top of your field. IRE can help you enhance your daily reporting with resources you won’t find anywhere else.

See all the member benefits

Want to sponsor a student member?

IRE is committed to developing the next generation of investigative reporters by introducing more students to the organization. To do this, we need your help. Please consider sponsoring a $25 student membership on behalf of your alma mater, college media or for an intern at your news organization. You can also donate a membership to help support IRE’s efforts to build a more diverse organization. 

If you decide to sponsor a student, please promote the program through social media. Use the hashtag #SponsorIRE and tweet a link to this page.

Become a sponsor

You can sponsor a student membership in three ways:

1. Sponsor an individual student. That student will receive an email that you have sponsored them for one year. If they already have an active membership, it will be extended for another year.

2. Donate a general student membership. This option allows you to donate a membership to your alma mater or college media organization. IRE will work with professors and other campus leaders to find a student. That student will receive an email that you have sponsored their membership for one year. If you happen to know of a professor, adviser or student editor at your chosen institution, you can list their name and email on the form. This would be greatly appreciated, but is not required.

You can also choose to direct your student sponsorship to support IRE’s efforts to build a more diverse organization. IRE will work with a variety of universities to match these donations with students.

3. Donate to our student fund. Make a general donation of any amount to help send students of color, those who identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community, or with disabilities to training

become a sponsor

If you have questions or need assistance, please contact

Support a Journalist Program

Apply for free IRE membership renewal

Current and former IRE professional and academic members who are unable to renew their memberships due to layoffs, furloughs or job terminations, can apply to receive a complimentary one-year membership renewal through IRE’s Support a Journalist Program.

The program is for professional and academic members only whose memberships have expired or are going to expire within 60 days who are struggling to find work. If you would like to apply for membership assistance, please fill out this form

Membership assistance will be awarded as funds are available.

If you would like to help support this program, please donate here. and put "Support a Journalist" in the specify fund line.

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