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The Assistant Director of Media Relations is responsible for identifying potential news stories; pitching stories to national, state and regional media; connecting University sources with external media; developing strategies for media relations and issues management; writing and publishing news releases and magazine stories that promote the University, its students, faculty, alumni and research.
Assist in creating and implementing media relations strategies and activities for assigned areas of the University that promote academic and research excellence, student success and community engagement. Develop and implement communications strategies that highlight and promote achievements of the University, faculty, students, staff and alumni. Share strategies, pitch news, and write features, news articles and copy for release and for the University's publications, periodicals and website as assigned to support communications strategies and objectives.
Respond to media requests in a timely manner, often under deadline pressure. Arrange interviews with faculty, staff, students and administrators as appropriate. Help prepare UTA personnel for media interviews. Handle logistics for media; compile and maintain experts list to help reporters localize breaking news stories. Adapt to rapidly changing scenarios and priorities.
Coordinate closely with the University's schools, colleges and administrative units in order to set media priorities, develop media opportunities, identify and develop story ideas, cultivate faculty experts, ensure consistency of overall messaging and avoid duplication of effort and resources. Independently cultivate collegial and productive relationships with senior administrators, vice presidents, deans, department chairs, external colleagues and others. Use journalistic and public relations skills to identify, prepare, publicize and produce news content that supports the University's mission.
Cultivate mutually beneficial and trusting relationships with members of the local, regional, national and international media. Develop a well-rounded and saturated media presence locally and regionally, while placing particular emphasis on national media. Assist in long-term media placement planning to align story pitches with prominent editorial calendars and predictable news coverage cycles, such as broadcast ratings periods, etc.
Assist in providing media monitoring/analytics reports for internal distribution and to inform university leadership, and archive external media stories for use in promoting the mission of the University. Archive and distribute daily news roundup for senior administrators and others. Update UT Arlington website with news and appropriate images to promote the University, its students, faculty, staff and alumni.
Fulfill critical crisis communications roles, including preparation, training and participation in actual events. Work a demanding schedule, including after-hours and weekends, if required, during times of emergency or crisis. Assist University Advancement, deans, department chairs, faculty and staff in planning media coverage for special events.
Perform other duties assigned.
Bachelor's degree required, preferably in journalism, communications, public relations, liberal arts, business or a related field.
A minimum of three years (3) of relevant communications experience, supported by a portfolio of writing and published/broadcast samples, is required.
Background in news reporting, broadcast journalism, public relations or strategic communications.
Exceptional oral and written communications talent and skill.
The position may require some presence and commitment before 8am, after 5pm, and on weekends, both on and off campus. Additionally, this position is designated as essential personnel under the University's crisis management plan, and there is a potential for significant and prolonged demands on time during times of crisis or emergency. Some local, regional, and national travel may be required for meetings, events, and conferences.
Bachelor's degree in journalism, communications, liberal arts, business, or a related field.
Previous experience in higher education.
Fluent in written and spoken Spanish.
Background in news reporting and broadcast journalism.
Demonstrated positive, collegial and collaborative work style.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
Competency in Microsoft Office programs.
Multi-media skills, such as online publishing, social media, video, online photo presentation, etc.
In-depth knowledge of communication strategies, tools, techniques, and technologies.
Exceptional writing/editing skills – including development and editing along with ability to shape and improve content for multiple target audiences and repackage materials for multiple uses.
Knowledge of news media practices.
Applicants must include in their online resume the following information: 1) Employment history: name of company, period employed (from month/year to month/year), job title, summary of job duties and 2) Education: school name, degree type, and major.
UTA is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action institution. Minorities, women, veterans and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply. Additionally, the University prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of sexual orientation. A criminal background check will be conducted on finalists. The UTA is a tobacco free campus.
With annual research expenditures in excess of $100M, the University of Texas at Arlington is a Carnegie Research-1 “highest research activity” institution committed to life-enhancing discovery, innovative instruction, and caring community engagement. A leading institution in the heart of the thriving North Texas region, UTA nurtures minds within an environment that values excellence, ingenuity, and diversity. With a total global enrollment of over 59,000 in AY 2018-19, UTA is one of the largest institutions in the University of Texas System. Guided by its Strategic Plan Bold Solutions | Global Impact, UTA fosters interdisciplinary research and teaching to enable the sustainable megacity of the future within four broad themes: health and the human condition, sustainable urban communities, global environmental impact, and data-driven discovery. UTA was cited by U.S. News & World Report as having the second lowest average student debt among U.S. universities in 2018. U.S. News & World Report also ranks UTA fourth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. The University is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2018 Best for Vets list.
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