Director of Public Relations
NWU is seeking applications for the next Director of Public Relations who will understand internal and external audiences and media types and support marketing activities and campaigns across the university. As a highly detail-oriented, organized, creative contributor to the NWU Marketing and Public Relations team, the incumbent will:
- Enhance the visibility and reputation of Nebraska Wesleyan University through strategic communication efforts.
- Work closely with the President, Chief of Staff, and Administrative Council to communicate about NWU in strategic ways and enhance the university’s culture of transparency.
- Be responsible for university’s media relations efforts, social media efforts and crisis communication efforts.
The position includes a competitive salary and comprehensive package with health, vision and dental insurance benefits, retirement benefits, a generous holiday and vacation schedule, and undergraduate tuition remission for employees’ dependents among other benefits.
Nebraska Wesleyan University is a private university serving 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students and committed to a liberal arts education. Located in Lincoln, the capital city of Nebraska, and with an instructional location in Omaha, NWU offers programs for traditional and adult undergraduate and for graduate students.
- Works closely with President, Chief of Staff, Administrative Council and other campus departments to develop and execute strategic communication plans, talking points, and content on university initiatives and events.
- Collaborates with Chief of Staff and/or Director of Marketing and Communications to create and implement communication plans for the university’s comprehensive programs.
- Responsible for media relations efforts including developing story ideas and pitches, arranging media interviews and press releases to promote the university.
- Track and influence media coverage, contribute written and visual content for various media sources, support University communications in collaboration with the Chief of Staff, and develop internal website content.
- Cultivate and maintain relationships with media and influential professionals (locally, regionally, nationally).
- Collaborate with Chief of Staff to respond to media inquiries and serve as university spokesperson as delegated; Manage sensitive issues to maintain the university’s good reputation.
- Collaborate with the Multimedia Specialist to maximize brand presence and lead social media efforts for official university social media platforms. Provides support to secondary NWU social media platforms. Develops social media content ideas and provides training for university employees. Closely monitors NWU’s social media platforms and other university social media platforms with close attention to issues/items of concern.
- Advises the Chief of Staff and Administrative Council on potential problems and opportunities in public relations, and on the climate between the University and the public; undertakes special projects and assignments as directed.
- Collaborate with the Marketing and Communications Office, developing university website content/stories.
- Writes and distributes news releases for university events, awards, announcements.
- Responsible for updating and maintaining university crisis communication plan.
- Responsible for communicating safety and security information to faculty, staff and students in a timely matter through designated communication channels including the Wesleyan Alert System in collaboration with the NWU Clery Team.
- Evaluates and supervises student assistants.
- Plans, prepares, and monitors department budget, expenditures, and related activities.
- Works an extended schedule, including weekends and evenings according to demands of the role and tasks.
- Performs other duties as assigned.
- A bachelor's degree in journalism, public relations, communications or equivalent degree is required.
- Three to five years of media-related and/or public relations or professional communications experience is required. Journalism, advertising, or closely related fields will be considered. Photojournalism or experience is considered a plus.
- Must have the ability to demonstrate integrated communication planning using a range of external and internal communication solutions: face-to-face, print and electronic channels, and creative media solutions.
- Must be able to research, interview and write stories for internal and external publications and deploy social media messaging.
- Must be able to develop relationships with local media to meet their needs, regional and national media to target specific exposure as well as trade media for coverage within our category.
- Must be available during crisis situation and develop appropriate messaging in response to crisis situations.
- Must have leadership ability to handle public relations projects from strategy to inception in collaboration with marketing team.
- Must have an understanding of website content and social media content and platforms. Some understanding of photography and design content is also a plus.
- Must possess strong professional communications skills including business and communications writing, public speaking in small- and large-group settings, and one-to-one interpersonal relationships.
- Must be able to listen to, engage, and influence clients, synthesize and relate complex information, analyze communication problems and opportunities, and to determine what is newsworthy.
- Must have high degree of accountability, organizational, decision-making, and problem-solving skills.
- Must have strong attention to detail. Copywriting, editing and/or proofreading background is preferred.
Diversity is a core value of Nebraska Wesleyan University’s mission and we embrace it as a source of strength. Applicants are encouraged to demonstrate how they are able to enhance and embrace this University core value in a diversity statement submitted as part of their application materials.
Nebraska Wesleyan University provides equal educational and employment opportunities to qualified persons in all areas of university operation without regard to religion or creed, age, genetic information, gender identity and expression, sexual identity and orientation, veteran status, disability, marital status, race, or national or ethnic origin, in compliance with state and federal laws, including but not limited to Title XII, Title IX, and the ADA. E-Verify, EOE.
Applicants should submit a cover letter, a resume, a diversity statement as a writing sample, and the names of three professional references at the following URL: https://nebrwesleyan.applicantpro.com/jobs/. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.