Have questions about our free documentary photography and college success program? You've come to the right place!


The Bronx Junior Photo League (BJPL) is a documentary photography and college success program serving middle through high school students. Learn more about the program below: 

What are the age requirements to be a student?

You must currently be a 6th - 12th grade student*. Have you graduated high school and you’re interested in photography? Email to inquire about our adult program, the Bronx Photo League. 

Do I have to be enrolled in a specific school or live in the Bronx to be in the BJPL?

Nope! We welcome anyone from the five boroughs of New York City, although preference is given to Bronx-based applicants. The only requirement is that you’re able to get to and from class every week. 

Do I need to have photography experience?

No prior experience is required! Our classes are geared to challenge students of all skill levels, from beginner to advanced. If you have previous experience, make sure to note this on your application, as occasionally we will move students to a more advanced class.

Do I need to have a camera?

Nope! The BDC provides all necessary equipment for students during their time in the program. This includes analog cameras, digital cameras, and laptops for use onsite with the full Adobe Creative Suite.

How much does the program cost?

The BJPL is completely FREE for all enrolled students! We provide equipment, cover the cost of any field trip transportation, and even have pre-class snacks.

When and where are classes held?

During the summer, classes are held twice a week at varying times. During the school year, classes are held after-school. High school students have class twice a week and middle school students meet once a week. We have college success workshops for high school students on weeknights and Saturdays, and host non-required open lab time for all high school students on Saturdays. All classes are held at the Bronx Documentary in our Annex building at 364 151st Street, Bronx, NY, 10451. During class time, we venture into our Melrose neighborhood to make photographs and record interviews. 

If I was already in the Bronx Junior Photo League do I need to apply again?

Although returning BJPL students are given preference during the application process, you still need to apply!

What will I learn in the BJPL?

You will learn how to tell a story about something you care about using documentary photography, a medium that is most often used to shed light on a greater social issue. You’ll learn how to create great images, and you’ll get a deeper understanding of the world around you, using research, interviews, and writing to explore the stories and issues that are important to you.

What are the hard skills you will learn? You’ll learn how to use a DSLR camera,  organize your work in Photo Mechanic and in the Google Suite, and edit multimedia stories in Adobe Premiere. You’ll learn how to connect to people and organizations, conduct an interview and record audio, research a topic using news sources, write captions and project statements, and create a complete documentary photography project.

How do I view work by BJPL students?

Check out students’ final projects from the 2020-21 school year at You can also check out past multimedia projects on our Vimeo channel.

Who teaches BJPL classes?

All of the BJPL teachers are practicing creative artists, mainly photographers and filmmakers--that’s why they're called Teaching Artists. All BJPL classes have 3 Teaching Artists and a maximum class size of 15 students, meaning that every student receives individualized support. Check out our teachers from our 2020-21 program here!

How long are students part of the BJPL?

Some BJPL students stay for one after-school program cycle (October - June) or a summer program, but the majority of BJPL students stay in the program for multiple years. Returning BJPL students continue to receive support in pursuing higher education, opportunities to travel and share their work around the world, and continue to develop documentary photography projects that they care about. We recently just had a student graduate from the BJPL who joined the program when she was in the 6th grade--she was a part of the program for 7 years. We call the BJPL a family for a reason: some BJPL alumni now assist with teaching the program, or are a part of the BDC through adult programs and fellowships, and many family members end up joining the BJPL or BDC programs.

How do I receive support in my college application process?

College success work is an integral part of the BJPL--any high school student that is a part of our program receives support in their pursuit of higher education and professional interests. We have a college counselor on staff that meets regularly with our students, we host workshops throughout the year that cover topics including financial aid, essay writing, college lists, and more, and visit colleges both in NYC and in upstate New York. (Please note that college success work takes place during the after-school program, from October through June.)

What colleges have BJPL students been accepted to?

We are very proud that over the past three years since we started our college prep program, 100% of our graduating BJPL students have matriculated to college! BJPL alumni are attending college at Middlebury College, New York University Tisch School of the Arts, Stanford University, City College, Cornell University, Fordham University, Hunter College, Pomona College, Queens College, SUNY New Paltz, SUNY Oswego, Syracuse University, The Cooper Union, The New School, Wheaton College, and more. 

Have more questions? Email