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Director of Communications

University of Oregon
Oregon, United States
Salary Not specified
Posted date
Sep 21, 2021

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Communications, Public Relations & Advertising
Employment Level
Salary Band
Not specified
Employment Type
Full Time
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Director of Communications

Job no: 527841
Work type: Officer of Administration
Location: Eugene, OR
Categories: Communications/Public Relations/Marketing, Research/Scientific/Grants

Department: Knight Campus
Appointment Type and Duration: Regular, Ongoing
Salary: Commensurate with experience
Compensation Band: OS-OA08-Fiscal Year 2020-2021
FTE: 1.0

Application Review Begins
August 9, 2021; position open until filled.

Special Instructions to Applicants
Along with your online application, please upload a CV and cover letter.

Department Summary
The department of University Communications is charged with telling the University of Oregon's (UO) stories to a broad range of audiences and positioning the university to succeed and thrive. The department utilizes and manages a comprehensive suite of communications tools, including public relations, branding, advertising, licensing, digital media, and more for the benefit of the university.

The Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact is a billion-dollar initiative designed to fast-track scientific discoveries and the process of turning those discoveries into innovations that improve the quality of life for people in Oregon, the nation, and beyond. The Knight Campus will reshape the higher education landscape in Oregon by training the next generations of scientists, forging tighter ties with industry and entrepreneurs and creating new educational opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students.

Position Summary
The Director of Communications for the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact (“director”) provides proactive communications support and counsel to the Knight Campus, the Knight Campus leadership team, Knight Campus faculty, and coordinates with academic units at the Knight Campus on top-line marketing and branding.

The director works closely with the Vice President and Executive Director of the Knight Campus, the Senior Associate Vice President of the Knight Campus, the Knight Campus Chief of Staff, and the Knight Campus Chief Development Officer on communicating the mission, vision, goals, and successes of the Knight Campus to a diverse audience both internal and external.

The director will develop and implement an annual strategic communications plan that ensures deliberate, creative, proactive, and cohesive messaging in support of Knight Campus initiatives and priorities.

In addition, the director oversees marketing and communications efforts for the Knight Campus, broad branding and messaging for academic programs, as well as development, innovation, and research efforts within the Knight Campus. The director leads strategic efforts to promote the Knight Campus and Knight Campus research across owned, earned, social, and paid media. This includes oversight of the Knight Campus website and digital presence. The director leverages central campus resources and expertise to promote awareness and understanding of Knight Campus priorities and initiatives.

Key audiences are prospective students and faculty, decision-makers, donors, industry partners, peers, media, external and internal advisory boards, and internal faculty, staff, students, and other stakeholders. The director coordinates with relevant campus colleagues who manage relationships with these audiences.

The director proactively handles required tasks, works independently, shows consistently sound judgment, and has a demonstrated ability to manage, understand, and communicate complex issues and institutional affairs to multiple audiences and through a variety of media. The director will regularly interact with administrative leadership and staff, other communication professionals, faculty, students, and external stakeholders. The position may occasionally require working in the evening or on weekends in support of Knight Campus activities.

The position is supervised jointly by the Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives in University Communications and the Knight Campus Chief of Staff. This position may supervise other communications professionals as the Knight Campus grows in activity.

Minimum Requirements
  • A bachelor's degree
  • Five years of experience in communications, public relations, public affairs with a demonstrated focus on science and/or engineering

    Professional Competencies
  • Demonstrated excellence in writing and copyediting in short format
  • Demonstrated ability to assimilate complicated information and write for variety of audiences, media, and contexts
  • Demonstrated mastery of digital communications, including website, photo editing, content management systems, and power point
  • Commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity and equity through communications and within the workplace
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently, set appropriate work priorities, and require minimal supervision over regular work activities
  • Demonstrated ability to work well in a team environment
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple projects and tight deadlines
  • Demonstrated ability to provide communications counsel and support for an executive or institutional leader
  • Demonstrated ability to adapt tone and voice to reach intended audiences
  • Experience in creating and managing communications plans and strategies

    Preferred Qualifications
  • Experience in higher education setting, preferably in a role communicating science and engineering impact on society and the environment
  • Experience in issue management and/or crisis communications
  • Graduate degree in an applied science or engineering discipline or an advanced degree or certificate in science/technical communication

    FLSA Exempt: Yes

    All offers of employment are contingent upon successful completion of a background inquiry.

    The University of Oregon is proud to offer a robust benefits package to eligible employees, including health insurance, retirement plans and paid time off. For more information about benefits, visit

    The University of Oregon is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the ADA. The University encourages all qualified individuals to apply, and does not discriminate on the basis of any protected status, including veteran and disability status. The University is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to applicants and employees with disabilities. To request an accommodation in connection with the application process, please contact us at or 541-346-5112.

    UO prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national or ethnic origin, age, religion, marital status, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression in all programs, activities and employment practices as required by Title IX, other applicable laws, and policies. Retaliation is prohibited by UO policy. Questions may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, Office of Civil Rights Compliance, or to the Office for Civil Rights. Contact information, related policies, and complaint procedures are listed on the statement of non-discrimination.

    In compliance with federal law, the University of Oregon prepares an annual report on campus security and fire safety programs and services. The Annual Campus Security and Fire Safety Report is available online at

    To apply, visit

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