Concurso María Albán 2020

This contest pays tribute to the pioneer of investigative journalism in Ecuador, María Albán, a journalist born in Guayaquil in 1939. María Albán was the editor of Vistazo magazine from 1986 to 1988 and led the country's first investigative unit. She won the highest award for Ecuadorian journalism, the "Jorge Mantilla Ortega", in 1990. She was the director of the Investigation Unit of the Diario Expreso and pioneer of investigative journalism in Ecuador.Additionally, she was a member of the IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors) international network.

A María Albán Scholarship will be awarded for a Bachelor's in Journalism for 4 years, with coverage of up to 100% in fees. The scholarship does not cover enrollment fees. The winner of this scholarship must observe the regulations indicated by the University and comply with the conditions established in the Regulations of the María Albán Contest.

Scholarship category
Closing Date
Friday, 15 May 2020
Applicable academic areas

Maria Alban Contest Rules

  1. All students who are enrolled as high school seniors in schools legally recognized by the Ministry of Education of Ecuador may participate in the contest.
  2. Participation in the contest will be individual. To participate, each student must fill out the attached Registration Form, present the original and a copy of their ID, student card, or any photographic document that proves their identity.
  3. Registrations to participate in the María Albán Contest must be completed online at this link Applicants can register until May 15th, 2020.
  4. To participate in the contest, the applicant must submit, along with the registration form, and in the space provided in the link, an essay of 1500 to 3000 characters, in .doc or .pdf format, about an little known or unknown Ecuadorian, whose achievements deserve to be highlighted by the media. The applicant must attach additional material to the essay in any other format (audio, video, web page, etc.) that shows the achievements of the selected character as a report. This material should be sent to Tania Orbe, professor of Journalism, by email  ( Digital products will be received through WeTransfer or through a link to a web page, or a link to a YouTube video. Both the essay and the ‘report’ are necessary in order to apply for the scholarship and choose the winner. The evaluation will take place from May 15th through the 22nd.
  5. Applicants with the 3 best submissions will be interviewed by an ad-hoc committee made up of full-time professors from the Bachelor's of Journalism and other professors from the College, in order to find out their interests and assess their potential and abilities. These meetings will be held the week of May 25th. Applicants will be asked to reflect on current trends in journalism. Their motivation and character will be evaluated, as well as their potential contribution to the program, the College, and the University. The Committee will determine the suitability of the candidates based on their performance in the interview and the quality of their essay and additional materials.
  6. The Committee reserves the right to declare the Contest void if it considers that the level of student work is not adequate. The Committee's decisions are final.
  7. Final results will be announced the week of June 1st, 2020.
  8. The winner of the María Albán Contest scholarship must confirm their acceptance by Monday, June 8th, 2020. They must also have successfully taken and passed, by May 9th, the academic aptitude test for entrance into USFQ (with a minimum score of 1900 points on the PAA exam). In case of not achieving the established scores, the University reserves the right to deliver the scholarship (or not).
  9. The scholarship winner must apply and enter the university in the year 2020-2021. USFQ does not save or reserve scholarships for subsequent years.

If you have questions, please email:

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