Directs external and internal communications initiatives, including proactive and reactive media relations, focusing on brand reputation and enhancement. Advisor on all crisis communications and issues management. Creates and supports implementation of strategic communication, integrated marketing, and social media plans for the University. Creates yearly communication calendars and plans, and inputs into budgets for various initiatives. Serves as communications and media champion to others at University. Oversees messaging and quality control of internal communications tools across University. Reports into AVP, Integrated Content and Communications.
Oversees integrated content strategy development and deployment across multiple channels (internal and external, digital and traditional) in support of overall UMC and University goals. Helps team articulate and achieve measureable results. Ensures collaboration and cross-functional approach to plans and initiatives to achieve maximum impact and professional development across the team.
Duties and Responsibilities:
PR and Media Relations:
- Leads on all University reactive and proactive media relations in service of the University; clear focus on proactive and innovative, storytelling media relations.
- Monitors all media coverage for schools and divisions, shares media reports (and regular dashboard), advocates for media coverage sharing in other areas (Enrollment Marketing, Advancement, etc.).
- Collaborates with schools and divisions to develop strategic public relations strategies that help raise awareness of the University and its various schools, centers, departments. Ensures strategies align with the overall UMC strategic plan.
- Ensures effective implementation of social media strategy and policy across the University and oversees management of central University social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube.
- Actively collaborates with departments to leverage all news being announced across the University.
- Manages communications for large University initiatives, including high-profile speakers, events, campaigns, etc.
- Oversees all internal channels for distribution of impactful communications including email, e-newsletters, digital screens, internal videos, etc.
- Advises on key messaging, senior leader stakeholder management, and internal issues management.
- Consistently monitors and evolves communications, messaging/tone, channels and metrics.
- Conducts media training on as needed basis (faculty experts and senior administrators).
- Serves as strategic advisor on all crisis communications plans, and address gaps, identifies vulnerabilities, and oversees case study reviews for senior management.
- Advises on all issues and crises communications on behalf of the University, including strategy, messaging, distribution, and responding to media. Lead duties filled by Communication Manager.
- Serves on the Emergency Preparedness Committee as communications lead. Identifies vulnerable areas that will affect ability to communicate in a timely, accurate manner.
Minimum Education/Work Experience
Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations, Journalism, Communications or related field and a minimum of ten years of direct public or media relations, marketing or communications experience.
- Working knowledge of media/integrated marketing and social media best practices is required.
- Proven success in PR pitching and high profile media placements; active media network with focus on regional and national news and higher education.
- Ability to collaborate with various teams including advancement, UMC, Student Development, HR, President’s office, Provost’s office, deans, special events, Graduate and Professional Enrollment Management, etc.
- Superior verbal, written, communications planning skills required; solid command of various computer software and social media channels.
- Demonstrated project management skills and ability to manage various deadline-driven projects simultaneously.
- Superior interpersonal skills and ability to coordinate activities productively with functions and units outside his/her own sphere of control to ensure successful communication of desired messages.
- Understanding and proof of success in driving results in a collaborative, consensus-driven organization.
- Sophisticated in people management and a passion for mentoring, fostering career paths and professional development.
- High ethical standards and integrity required.
- Proficient in MS office, MS Publisher, Adobe, and Emma.
- Working knowledge of social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn), and Sprout Social