Director of Communications in Student Affairs
Amherst has taken a leadership role among highly selective liberal arts colleges and universities in successfully diversifying the racial, socio-economic, and geographic profile of its student body. The College is similarly committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty, administration and staff.
Amherst College invites applications for the Director of Communications in Student Affairs position. The Director of Communications in Student Affairs is a full-time, year-round position, starting at $85,000 per year - commensurate with experience. Given Amherst's distinction as one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country, the successful candidate will demonstrate the ways in which they bring value to and will work towards supporting a broadly diverse community.
The Director of Communications is a senior leader within Student Affairs responsible for communications and marketing strategy for the division and its departments. The Director is a strategic leader responsible for developing and executing comprehensive communication strategies that enhance the visibility, engagement, and reputation of Student Affairs within the campus community and beyond. This position plays a vital role in conveying the division's mission, departments, programs, and initiatives to various stakeholders, including a diverse group of students, faculty, staff, parents/families, alumni, and the broader community. Reporting directly to the Associate Chief Student Affairs Officer (ACSAO), the Director is a key collaborating member of the Student Affairs senior leadership team.
In this newly created role, the Director will develop and implement a communications strategy that builds on existing programs, collaborations, and relationships with students and campus partners, in close collaboration with the wider College's Office of Communications. The successful candidate will create an integrated communications and messaging program that extends across traditional and digital media, utilizes data and analytics to continually assess its success and effectiveness, and can be adjusted in real-time. The Director takes appropriate actions to support a diverse workforce and participates in the College's efforts to create a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming work environment.
Summary of Responsibilities
Strategic Communications Leadership
- Conceive of and implement an overarching strategic communications and marketing plan for Student Affairs that is innovative, progressive, and proactive and that incorporates traditional and digital channels and media with fundamental themes and messages that can be adapted to suit various constituencies.
- Conduct an audit of all existing communications from the Office of Student Affairs.
- Establish a communications planning process that reflects current priorities and goals for Student Affairs.
- Evaluate the effectiveness and success of communications vehicles and messages on an ongoing basis utilizing data/analytics.
- Work closely with the ACSAO, Student Affairs Senior Leadership Team, staff and faculty within the division, and the student body to advance communication efforts across the College and beyond.
- Actively contribute to content development: writing across all media, targeting specific audiences, creating messages, and connecting content across platforms and programs.
- Produce high-quality written and visual content, including web content, newsletters, social media posts, and videos.
- In collaboration with the Office of Communications, leverage and grow current social media presence and engagement in Student Affairs, across a variety of platforms and constituents. Keep up to date with digital trends and implement best practices.
- Promote excellence through well-defined and measurable goals, inspire and motivate staff through the free flow of information, and continually frame projects within the context of Student Affairs priorities, the College's overall strategic plan, and the Office of Communications' strategic plan. Contribute to and foster a culture of aspiration, innovation, collaboration, and transparency.
- Develop and implement crisis communication plans and protocols for Student Affairs and serve as the Student Affairs communications representative on the College's crisis communications team.
Project Management and Collaboration
- Work collaboratively with colleagues in all departments across Student Affairs to create a truly integrated Student Affairs communications operation.
- Proactively cultivate strong working relationships with the College's Office of Communications and others across the College. Ensure that the Student Affairs communications team is seen as a collaborative, responsive partner, able to professionally address both opportunities and concerns.
- Work with and manage relationships with external and internal vendors to bring major projects to fruition.
- In collaboration with the Office of Communications, manage and update the Student Affairs websites/pages.
- Manage the communications budget.
- Directly implement routine and ad hoc communications needs for Student Affairs.
- Working with the ACSAO, craft important messaging regarding policies, updates, and other communication needs (all students, parents, and families, senior staff, etc.)
- In collaboration with the Office of Communications, maintain and enhance the Student Affairs brand identity, ensuring consistency in messaging and visual representation.
- In collaboration with the Office of Communications, oversee the creation and implementation of branding guidelines for the division.
Core Student Affairs work
- Participate in various campus-wide and Student Affairs committees and working groups.
- Serve as a member of the Student Affairs leadership team.
- Convene the Student Affairs global crisis communications group, as needed, and if needed, in conjunction with the Office of Communications' crisis communications team.
- Attend and represent Student Affairs at various programs, events, and initiatives across campus.
- Work with and supervise student staff interested in communications, graphic design, etc.
- Engage with a diverse set of students, faculty, staff, parents and families, and alumni to gather feedback and foster a sense of community within Student Affairs.
The ideal candidate will:
- Be passionate about Higher Education, Student Affairs, the liberal arts, educational access and opportunity, and working with students.
- Have experience working with diverse groups of people.
- Have managed projects with outside partners and vendors.
- Be knowledgeable of and experienced in both traditional print and written projects as well as modern digital and social media projects.
- Use data and analytics to inform decisions.
- Demonstrate exemplary writing and interpersonal communication skills. A refined and nuanced ability to strategically craft content, create connections, and disseminate messages in ways that reflect, engage, and enhance various complex community and cultural perspectives.
- Bachelor's degree.
- Seven to 10 years of progressively responsible experience in strategic marketing and communications, ideally in higher education. Proven ability to develop a successful strategic communications program targeting a wide variety of audiences.
- Demonstrated accomplishments in communicating with young people from a variety of diverse backgrounds.
- Exemplary writing and interpersonal communication skills.Success in increasing the effectiveness of a communications program through established objectives and performance standards, evaluating the strengths of existing communications efforts, and identifying opportunities for improvement.
- Proven management skills in establishing a team- and goal-oriented environment that empowers staff through active communication and delegation and that builds confidence, promotes diversity of thought, and celebrates achievements.
- Excellent creative and design sensibilities, with a strong understanding of the design process from creative concept through production and execution.
- A strong strategic thinker with an impeccable judgment regarding when and how to offer advice to senior leadership.
- A collaborative and collegial orientation, as well as the eagerness and ability to engage others across an enterprise and build strong professional relationships. A convener who can synthesize many ideas and produce work products that address a wide variety of goals and objectives.
- Bachelor's or advanced degree in communications, public relations, journalism, etc.
Amherst College offers many opportunities for professional growth and development, continued learning, and career advancement.
Amherst College is pleased to provide a comprehensive, highly competitive benefits package that meets the needs of staff and faculty and their families. Benefits are an important part of our overall compensation, so it is critical that you review all of the options to ensure it meets your total compensation requirements. Click here for Benefits Information.
Interested candidates are asked to submit a resume and cover letter online at https://amherst.wd5.myworkdayjobs.com/Amherst_Jobs. Please be sure to upload all requested documents prior to clicking Submit. Applications cannot be revised once submitted. (Current employees and students should apply by clicking on the Career icon from their Workday home screen) Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.
To apply, visit https://amherst.wd5.myworkdayjobs.com/en-US/Amherst_Jobs/job/Amherst-Campus/Director-of-Communications-in-Student-Affairs_JR4663
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