Traveling Workshop 2020: Nashville, Tennessee

photo of map of Nashville

Nashville, Tennessee: January 26 – February 1, 2020

For the third year in a row, Nashville Public Radio is hosting a week-long Transom Traveling Workshop in audio storytelling. Ten beginning-level students will get seven days of intensive training.

Apply for Workshop

Class and Cost

The fee for the week is $1,958 and includes:

  • Training by Rob Rosenthal, lead instructor for the Transom Story Workshop, with support from teaching assistant Meribah Knight.
  • Your own copy of Hindenburg Journalist audio editor to keep.
  • Use of quality field-recording equipment. (Or bring your own if you like.)
  • Three group meals total during the seven days.
  • Eligible for $45 one-year, student membership with AIR.

Workshop participants will gather Sunday at 2:00 and for the rest of the week be immersed in field recording, interviewing, digital editing, script writing, and narration. By the end of the week, each participant will have produced a short profile of a creative person living in or around Nashville. The Workshop ends with a listening event the evening of Saturday, February 1st. Participants should plan on traveling home on Sunday, February 2nd.

Dates and Deadlines

  • Workshop and Scholarship applications open July 23, 2019
  • Workshop and Scholarship applications due August 30, 2019 (11:59 p.m. EDT)
  • Applicants notified of selection decisions September 13, 2019
  • Enrollment confirmation September 20, 2019
  • Tuition costs due in full October 4, 2019

The Selection Process

There will be ten participants in all. Selection is competitive. We want creative, dedicated newcomers seeking a strong set of entry-level skills. Previous experience isn’t needed, but helps: preference goes to those who’ve tried audio storytelling before.

Traveling Workshop Scholarship

We are also pleased to offer the Traveling Workshop Scholarship. Our goal is to make Traveling Workshops a realistic option for people who have been unable to attend due to cost. Seed money for our Traveling Workshop Scholarship came from a graduate, appreciative of the opportunity, who generously wanted to help open the door for others with fewer financial resources. Additional funds come from This American Life, as well as other graduates and individuals who believe in the quality of the training we provide and in the importance of diversifying the public media work force.

Scholarships will be offered based on financial need, with a focus on diverse voices, people of color, and those who have been historically underrepresented as makers of public media. The Workshop admissions committee reviews applications and only after applicants are accepted into the Workshop are scholarship applications reviewed and awarded. For now, Scholarship funds are available only to people living in the U.S. and to Workshops happening in the U.S.

Scholarship applicants are required to complete both a Workshop application and a Scholarship application. Both are due August 30th by midnight EDT. We ask you to complete and submit your application to the Workshop first. You will find a link to the Scholarship application on the post for each individual Workshop site. Applicants will be asked to note on their Scholarship application which Workshop site or sites they have applied to.

Apply for Scholarship


Participants are responsible to find their own housing. Students in the past have had luck with Air BnB’s and sharing housing with other students in the Workshop.


Out-of-town participants will need to fly into Nashville International Airport. Public transportation in Nashville can be challenging. Participants may want to look into renting a car for the week and/or should count on using Uber/Lyft to get from their accommodations to the radio station and for their field work.

From Previous Traveling Workshop Participants

“Rob is one of the best teachers I’ve ever come across. His passion is contagious, and it seems he approaches every aspect of the workshop with intentionality” – Nashville, TN participant 2019

“I absolutely loved this Workshop.” – Nashville, TN participant, 2019

Rob Rosenthal, Lead Instructor

Rob Rosenthal is an independent producer and a teacher. He’s the host for the HowSound podcast on radio storytelling — a joint project of PRX and Transom. He started and then ran the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies’ radio track for 11 years. He is now the lead teacher for the Transom Story Workshop, which launched in the fall of 2011.

Meribah Knight, Assistant Instructor

Meribah Knight is a reporter for Nashville Public Radio and producer of the podcast The Promise. Before moving to Nashville she lived in Chicago, where she covered business, the economy, housing, crime and transportation. Meribah was a staff reporter with Crain’s Chicago Business covering manufacturing in the Rust Belt, aviation and transportation. She has also been a staff reporter with the Chicago News Cooperative, and adjunct lecturer at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. Her writing has appeared in The New York TimesThe New YorkerO, The Oprah MagazineChicago Magazine, and The Chicago Reader. Her radio and multimedia work has been featured on NPR, WBEZ, The PBS News Hour and Chicago Public Television. 

Apply for Workshop


Contact us with your workshop questions: info [at] transom [dot] org. For information about other Traveling Workshops happening this winter, go here.

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