Are you interested in telling stories about the people and programs at the heart of an organization that is making a difference in the lives of Oregonians? The Oregon State University Division of Extension and Engagement is looking for a communications specialist to join our award-winning communications and marketing team. The primary focus is on storytelling and media relations – including writing, editing and basic multimedia production – that showcase the breadth and depth of the division’s Extension programs and community engagement work. The position is based on Oregon State’s beautiful, historic and state-of-the-art main campus in Corvallis with potential for hybrid work, and will involve travel throughout Oregon. Corvallis is one of America’s best college towns, close to the Pacific Ocean, the Cascade mountains and Oregon wine country.
This Communications Specialist position is a 12-month, full-time, professional faculty position. An FTE between 0.75 and 1.00 may be considered to meet the employee’s and the Division’s business needs.
The Communications Specialist creates content in a variety of media and delivery platforms to inform public audiences about the Division of Extension and Engagement’s (division) programs, people and impact. The primary focus is on storytelling and media relations, including writing, editing and basic multimedia production. This work serves to build awareness of and support for the division and its units among the public, decision makers and other audiences. This position covers programmatic beats as assigned. In addition, this position contributes to efforts to create content and related strategies that are accessible to all and linguistically and culturally relevant.
The Communication Specialist collaborates with unit colleagues, division faculty and staff, and external collaborators, including government agencies and organizations, members of the media and the public.
This position reports to the unit’s news and public affairs manager.
About the division’s communication and marketing unit:
The Extension Communications unit operates as an integrated communication and marketing team in support of the Division of Extension and Engagement and the statewide OSU Extension Service. The team collaborates with division leadership and colleagues to create educational, engaging and brand-aligned communications. This includes educational publishing, news and public affairs, marketing and branding, visual design and multimedia, web and content strategy, and executive and internal communication efforts. The team also offers advice, consultation and training for division employees in these areas. In addition, the team provides collaborative leadership for innovative and effective use of educational and communication technologies that support access to and engagement with OSU Extension.
This Communications Specialist embeds the commitment of the university to a collaborative and inclusive community in all interactions and duties performed and contributes to a welcoming and respectful workplace culture.
75% – Content creation, media relations and editing
- Creates and edits content about the division’s programs, activities and people.
- Interviews sources and writes news stories, news releases and other short- and long-form content in consultation with and as assigned by supervisor. Duties include travel throughout Oregon as needed.
- Takes photographs and helps produce video or other multimedia content that accompanies written materials. Includes appropriate metadata with digital assets for future reference.
- Builds knowledge of the division’s programs and activities and relationships with division leadership, faculty and staff to identify story ideas and develops news content.
- Develops and maintains relationships with media that result in their use of division and OSU Extension content and sources.
- Distributes content to media contacts and responds to media and public inquiries in a timely fashion.
- Follows OSU and unit review and distribution protocols.
- Follows OSU and Extension style guides, including Associated Press (AP) style.
- Publishes content to digital platforms including OSU Extension and the division’s websites and OSU newsroom.
- Ensures content and distribution strategies reflect and support OSU’s commitments to diversity, inclusion and social justice as central to our mission. This includes focusing on increasing access and accessibility; emphasizing cultural and linguistic relevance; and diversifying the languages, images and perspectives represented in materials.
10% – Collaboration and coordination
- Contributes writing, editing, proofreading and other skills and expertise to unit and division teams and projects. This may include but is not limited to educational content, marketing material, newsletters, social media and internal communications.
- Follow OSU and division brand guidelines, digital publishing standards and digital contact management data integrity practices for programmatic communications, marketing and engagement.
- Communicates and coordinates with colleagues in OSU News and Research Communications and college communications units.
- Participates actively in the OSU communicators’ network, including attending workshops and meetings held by University Relations and Marketing.
- Uses software and digital tools and platforms to create, edit and publish content; promote and deliver content; manage and use digital assets; and work collaboratively.
- Coordinates own projects, including developing plans and schedules, tracking progress and deadlines, and coordinating with supervisor and team members. Uses unit’s standard project management tools and processes to support efficient internal work.
10% – Research, training and service
- Monitors media coverage and other relevant data; collaborates with colleagues and unit leadership to increase effectiveness and adjust strategies and tactics.
- Provides media relations advice, training and consultation to Division employees. This occurs through workshops, webinars, articles, individual instruction and other appropriate methods.
- Shares knowledge and expertise through professional organizations and award and recognition programs that advance the communications and public relations field.
- Participates in professional development to improve skills, expand knowledge, remain current with changing technology and network with others in the profession.
- Builds knowledge and skills to use digital communications, marketing and engagement technologies relevant to position duties.
- Engages in opportunities to contribute to and learn about diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice and their implications for communications and marketing work.
- Provides service to OSU and the land-grant system by working on unit, division, college, university, regional or national committees and projects.
5% – Other duties and projects
- Performs other duties and projects as assigned.
- Bachelor’s degree in public relations, journalism, communications or field related to the duties of the position.
- Two years of professional communications experience relevant to duties of the position.
- Strong written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills.
- Demonstrated commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity and inclusion.
- Demonstrated skill with photography and/or videography, including basic photo and video editing.
- Demonstrated ability to sustain effective, professional interactions with colleagues, supervisor and others.
- Ability to learn and adapt to using multiple forms of digital communication systems and other tools in a changing technological environment.
- Ability to balance multiple projects and meet deadlines through independent and team work.
This position requires driving a university vehicle or a personal vehicle on behalf of the university; therefore, the incumbent must successfully complete a motor vehicle history check, possess and maintain a current, valid driver’s license in their state of residence, be determined to be position qualified and self-report convictions as per University Policy 05-030.
Preferred (Special) Qualifications
- Experience working with Associated Press (AP) or other standard style.
- Experience publishing content in digital platforms, such as websites.
- Experience using video- and photo-editing software such as Photoshop and Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premiere Pro.
- Sharp news sense, good copy-editing skills and strong attention to accuracy and detail.
- An understanding of local, state and national news media and media relations practices.
- Experience sharing best practices and coaching collaborators on using digital systems.
- Ability to present to and provide training for individuals and groups.
- Ability to accurately interpret technical, specialized or complex topics for public understanding.
- Bilingual and/or biliterate (Spanish/English).
Working Conditions/ Work Schedule
The primary work location for this position is the OSU Extension Communications office on OSU’s campus in Corvallis, Oregon. However, flexible work may be established via an OSU Flexible Work Arrangement Agreement, with pre-determined periodic reviews of on-going work for continuation of the agreement. This position is expected to work onsite in Corvallis for at least 50% of the time per week.
Working for Oregon State University is so much more than a job!
Oregon State University is a dynamic community of dreamers, doers, problem-solvers and change-makers. We don’t wait for challenges to present themselves — we seek them out and take them on. We welcome students, faculty and staff from every background and perspective into a community where everyone feels seen and heard. We have deep-rooted mindfulness for the natural world and all who depend on it, and together, we apply knowledge, tools and skills to build a better future for all.
• Top 1.4% university in the world
• More research funding than all public universities in Oregon combined
• 1 of 3 land, sea, space and sun grant universities in the U.S.
• 2 campuses, 11 colleges, 12 experiment stations, and Extension programs in all 36 counties
• 7 cultural resource centers that offer education, celebration and belonging for everyone
• 100+ undergraduate degree programs, 80+ graduate degrees plus hundreds of minor options and certificates
• 35k+ students including more than 2.3k international students and 10k students of color
• 217k+ alumni worldwide
• For more interesting facts about OSU visit: https://oregonstate.edu/about
Oregon State has a statewide presence with campuses in Corvallis and Bend, the OSU Portland Center and the Hatfield Marine Science Center on the Pacific Coast in Newport.
Oregon State’s beautiful, historic and state-of-the-art main campus is located in one of America’s best college towns. Corvallis is located close to the Pacific Ocean, the Cascade mountains and Oregon wine country. Nestled in the heart of the Willamette Valley, this beautiful city offers miles of mountain biking and hiking trails, a river perfect for boating or kayaking and an eclectic downtown featuring local cuisine, popular events and performances.
Total Rewards Package:
Oregon State University offers a comprehensive benefits package with benefits eligible positions that is designed to meet the needs of employees and their families including:
• Medical, Dental, Vision and Basic Life. OSU pays 95% of premiums for you and your eligible dependents.
• Free confidential mental health and emotional support services, and counseling resources.
• Retirement savings paid by the university.
• A generous paid leave package, including holidays, vacation and sick leave.
• Tuition reduction benefits for you or your qualifying dependents at OSU or the additional six Oregon Public Universities.
• Robust Work Life programs including Dual Career assistance resources, flexible work arrangements, a Family Resource Center, Affinity Groups and an Employee Assistance Program.
To review posting and apply, go to: https://jobs.oregonstate.edu/postings/149449. Apply to Posting # P07732UF. For full consideration, apply by 2/21/2024. Closes 3/6/2024.
• Bachelor’s degree in public relations, journalism, communications or field related to the duties of the position. • Two years of professional communications experience relevant to duties of the position. • Strong written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills. • Demonstrated commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity and inclusion. • Demonstrated skill with photography and/or videography, including basic photo and video editing. • Demonstrated ability to sustain effective, professional interactions with colleagues, supervisor and others. • Ability to learn and adapt to using multiple forms of digital communication systems and other tools in a changing technological environment. • Ability to balance multiple projects and meet deadlines through independent and team work. This position requires driving a university vehicle or a personal vehicle on behalf of the university; therefore, the incumbent must successfully complete a motor vehicle history check, possess and maintain a current, valid driver’s license in their state of residence, be determined to be position qualified and self-report convictions as per University Policy 05-030.
• Experience working with Associated Press (AP) or other standard style. • Experience publishing content in digital platforms, such as websites. • Experience using video- and photo-editing software such as Photoshop and Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premiere Pro. • Sharp news sense, good copy-editing skills and strong attention to accuracy and detail. • An understanding of local, state and national news media and media relations practices. • Experience sharing best practices and coaching collaborators on using digital systems. • Ability to present to and provide training for individuals and groups. • Ability to accurately interpret technical, specialized or complex topics for public understanding. • Bilingual and/or biliterate (Spanish/English).
Position requires travel throughout Oregon and non-standard (evening and weekend hours) to interview sources and capture content and infrequent out-of-state travel for professional development and service.
Driver’s license or alternate transportation required?
Equal Employer Statement(s)
OSU is an AA/EOE/Vets/Disabled.
About Oregon State University Division of Extension and Engagement
The Division of Extension and Engagement (Division) is core to Oregon State University’s mission. The Division helps create real solutions and positive impact across Oregon and beyond. The Division is aligned under the leadership of the Vice Provost for Extension and Engagement. To learn more about our Division and its core units and initiatives, please visit our website: https://engagement.oregonstate.edu/
OSU Extension programs, partnerships and volunteer opportunities are focused on:
- Healthy communities and economies
- Resilient and productive forests and natural ecosystems
- Sustainable agriculture, food systems and gardening
- Thriving youth, individuals and families
The Division has built the capacity and expectation for employees to use digital communications and technologies in the modern-day workplace. This reflects our demonstrable commitment to using digital communications tools and changing technologies as a primary way to raise Oregonian’s awareness of and engagement with our organization, programs and resources.
Commitment to inclusive excellence:
OSU is committed to creating and maintaining compassionate and inclusive learning and working environments for all learners, visitors and employees. We envision collaborative community environments that enhance civility and embrace diversity. All employees are responsible for achieving this commitment. This commitment includes, but is not limited to, complying with civil rights and language access regulations. Extension Communications employees are expected to use diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice frameworks in carrying out their responsibilities.
OSU Division of Extension and Engagement’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion:
OSU Work Life, Diversity and Cultural Resources: