The United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney has awarded its inaugural media fellowship, in partnership with the World Press Institute, to ABC journalist Siobhan Heanue.

Heanue was selected from a strong field of early career Australian journalists to travel to the United States in August this year, where she will join nine other international World Press Fellows for two months of immersion in US politics, business, culture and media.

"In an era of global media and the 24-hour news cycle, having an international perspective is becoming a prerequisite for the best journalism," says chief executive officer of the Centre, Professor Geoffrey Garrett.

"Siobhan Heanue is a very promising journalist and the fellowship will give her an invaluable opportunity to enrich her understanding of America, while working alongside peers from around the world."

Heanue joined the ABC as a news cadet in 2006 and is now a Canberra-based reporter and presenter for ABC television, radio and news. Her reports appear on a range of current affairs programs including ABC TV's Lateline, and she presents The Culture Quarter on ABC News 24.

The 2011 fellowship is based at the World Press Institute in Minneapolis-St Paul, Minnesota and will see Heanue travel to Washington DC, New York and other major US cities as part of a program of study, travel and interviews.

This is the first year that the United States Studies Centre World Press Institute Fellowship has been awarded.