Director of Communications
Reporting to the Vice President of Communications and Marketing, the Director of Communications is responsible for enhancing the College’s visibility and reputation through a strategic mix of communications initiatives, including media relations, digital content development, social media, and internal/external communications in support of the College’s academic, and admissions goals, and institutional priorities.
The Director plans, develops, implements, and assesses information and communication strategies including coordinating and overseeing content development, packaging, and dissemination, and works closely with the Vice President for Communications and Marketing in managing major communication initiatives to ensure effective communication with stakeholders, media, and the public.
This position requires deep knowledge of the College’s priorities and current issues in higher education, trends in media outreach and engagement, and sound judgement. Additionally, this position often handles highly sensitive and confidential information, which requires discretion, tact, and carefully weighed responses, often without warning or preparation.
In addition to handling external issues, this position is responsible for providing official responses to the news media, sometimes in high pressured situations, which requires quick thinking and measured responses. This position not only provides crucial input in the development of content strategy for media relations, but also offers media guidance to campus partners, including Office of the President and senior administrators.
This position serves as key liaison between members of the news media and ACPHS administration and faculty; develops and fosters relationships with key regional and national reporters and trade editors who cover higher education and related issues; proactively develops relationships across campus and regularly attends community meetings and other events on campus to understand issues and better promote positive stories of potential interest to the media. The position is also responsible for high-level interactions with the President’s Office, Cabinet members, key College administrators, and students.
- Strategic Communications Planning: Plans, manages, coordinates, and oversees all communications efforts on behalf of the College to its diverse audiences, including prospective students, families, alumni, donors, the ACPHS community, media, and others. Develop, execute, and monitor annual communications plan that supports the College’s strategic plan, provide reports on analytics.
- Content Development and Deployment: Proactively collaborate with Communications and Marketing colleagues, and other College employees to develop timely, authentic, and engaging web and social media content. In consultation with Communications and Marketing colleagues, oversees website content management, and the development and distribution of digital content for the College’s websites and social media accounts, and other digital properties. Collaborates with Director of Marketing to ensure consistency of the College’s brand across all web, digital, and social media channels. Leads development of content within brand guidelines for broad and targeted audiences, provide support and direction for collateral and websites.
- Public/Media Relations: Develop annual media relations objectives, strategies, and tactics in support of the College’s strategic plan. Provide detailed reports to share media coverage with constituents. Work closely with the Vice President for Communications and Marketing to produce engaging news stories and features about the College for use on the ACPHS College website, news media, social media, and other communications channels. Serve as spokesperson for the College as needed and work closely with the VP to coordinate responses to campus emergencies, crises, and controversial issues, working closely with the President, Cabinet, Campus Safety, Student Affairs, legal counsel, and others as needed. Develop and maintain strong relationships with local, national, and international news media. Manage incoming media inquiries and outgoing media outreach initiatives, oversee tracking and measuring of media placements, including the compilation and distribution of media highlights and monthly reports. Develop and manage faculty websites for use as a tool to proactively publicize work and research of ACPHS faculty and administration. Establish regular, proactive outreach to faculty and administrators and provide media training to faculty experts.
Evaluate regional and national issues for potential story opportunities. Manage preemptive reputation management efforts on behalf of the College.
- Supervisory Duties: Supervise team members, including Managing Editor, Videographer, and others as assigned, including directing job responsibilities, training, and delegating tasks and projects as needed. Responsible for managing freelance creatives, and serves as the key contact for PR agency relationships.
- Communications Support: Provide communications support to the Office of the President, and senior administrative leaders, including managing outgoing correspondence and responses, and managing internal communications and emails. Support the VP of Communications and Marketing and President with the development of presentations to share communications strategies and results with College constituents.
- Internal Communications: Oversee development of weekly digital newsletter for on-campus audience. Suggest, write, and edit stories and content, manage the population of newsletter templates, and oversee distribution to campus constituents.
- Event Communications Strategy and Support: Assist the Vice President for Communications and Marketing in coordinating content strategy, development and distribution, and other divisional operations, including all-hands efforts in support of major College events (Commencement, Inauguration, annual campus meetings and retreats, etc.).
- Other duties as assigned.
Education and Experience:
Bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications, journalism, English or related field.
5-7+ years of experience leading a high-performing marketing/communications team.
Experience in higher education preferred, including developing and executing marketing plans with clear, measurable objectives.
Prior experience developing content and managing social media channels for an organization.
For more information or to apply, visit Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences Applicant Portal | Director of Communications (acphs.edu)