Spotify has opened applications for the second iteration of Sound Up, a five-day boot camp that provides women of color with resources to kickstart their podcasting careers.
Applications are open until June 21 at midnight EST. Spotify will select 10 women from the applicant pool and fly them to New York City for the all-expenses-paid boot camp, which will take place August 12 to 17 and focus on technical production, storytelling through audio, and marketing, Variety reports.
At the end of the camp, each of the 10 participants will pitch her podcast concepts to an industry panel, which will in turn pick three winners. Those three winners will receive $10,000 apiece as well as ongoing mentorship to produce up to five episodes of their new podcast.
Spotify told Variety that Sound Up doesn’t come with any fine print. Creators who attend, and even those who win $10,000, don’t have to stick with Spotify; they are free to distribute their podcasts on other platforms. They’ll also retain all ownership of the intellectual property behind their podcast concepts. And if they ultimately decide not to pursue their podcast concept, that’s OK too, the company said.
Sound Up received more than 18,000 applications last year. The pool was whittled down to three winners: scientific auditor Titi Shodiya, who now cohosts science fiction and pop culture podcast Dope Labs; geneticist Janina Jeff, whose upcoming podcast In Those Genes focuses on genetics and the black community; and Kristina Ogilvie, a secretary at a disaster aid nonprofit who pitched Your Job Seems Easy, about women of color at work.
Shodiya’s podcast is currently airing on Spotify. Jeff and Ogilvie’s are still in development.
Applicants for Sound Up must be U.S. citizens. That’s the only requirement — no prior experience with podcasting is necessary. “Applicants just need to have something unique to say and a desire to use the podcast medium to tell their story,” Spotify said.
You can apply here.
Sound Up is part of Spotify’s overall ambitious push into podcast production. In February, it acquired podcast-focused companies Gimlet Media and Anchor for $500 million. And in March, it brought in storytelling studio Parcast for an undisclosed amount. The latest Spotify podcast news came this week, when the platform announced it had signed a deal with Barack and Michelle Obama. The former first couple will develop, produce, and host podcasts for Spotify through their production company, Higher Ground.