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How to Apply

A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and should be attached as the first page of your resume. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position.

Job Summary

In an initiative launched in October 2017, the University of Michigan is taking steps to expand how its faculty members engage with the public to influence federal, state and local policy, and how they share their knowledge about important issues for the public good. The U-M Public Engagement effort has two major goals: to help faculty share their expertise with the public, and to help the public recognize the great value of its 200-year investment in U-M.

As the Public Engagement communications manager you will create and direct the implementation of a strategic, multi-channel, marketing and communications plan to support Public Engagement work throughout the University of Michigan. This position will work closely with colleagues in Michigan News, Public Affairs, and other units within the Office of the Vice President for Communications, and in partnership with U-M's offices of the President, Provost, Government Relations, Academic Innovation, Academic Affairs, Research as well as the schools and colleges. 

This position will report to the Office of the Vice President for Communications (Nikki Sunstrum, Director of Social Media). 


Communications (50%)

  • Coordinate Public Engagement and Impact communications to raise the profile of the initiative and U-M’s work and expertise. Develop, implement, and adapt as necessary a university-wide communications strategy, with consistent messaging, across all channels.
  • Work in collaboration with OVPC units such as Michigan News, Michigan Creative, Public Affairs, etc. and external units such as the Office of Academic Innovation, offices of Research and Government Relations, the Provost’s Office, and Academic Affairs to identify resources, educate faculty and enable promotion of research efforts, legislative testimony, speaking engagements, training, presentation opportunities, etc.
  • Employ tactics to train and educate faculty on methods to effectively promote their research, service, coordinate social media outreach; build personal brand awareness; manage digital and written content; and liaison with Michigan News to facilitate media relations.
  • Develop and maintain both internal/external mechanisms for effective communications, best practices, and outreach regarding faculty public engagement.
  • Work with key stakeholders campus-wide to collect, share, repurpose, and create new and engaging Public Engagement web content, including news and stories and a comprehensive social media strategy.
  • Manage the planning and coordination of marketing communications and materials (e.g., newsletters, brochures, manuals, public, social media posts, etc.). Ensure that newsletters and related marketing materials are accurate and issued on a timely basis.
  • In cooperation with Public Engagement leadership, develop and coordinate annual reports and publications.
  • Track and measure internal public engagement communications efforts and create metrics to demonstrate our impact, using that input to refine communications strategy.

Public Engagement (50%)

  • Seek out faculty members currently advising policymakers, regularly engaging in interviews with the media, testifying on important issues, and serving on federal and state advisory boards, to curate and promote as successful case studies.
  • Identify existing university resources, opportunities, and required areas of development to improve the public understanding of public engagement, our institutional success, and collective impact.
  • Promote action-oriented findings beyond scientific communities in order to meet our goals of positive community change and meaningful impact on policy and practice.
  • Research and identify opportunities for faculty experts to communicate and discuss the impact of Public Engagement projects with the general public.
  • Communicate, translate, and disseminate the impact of the results of research and projects to a broad set of audiences and constituencies.
  • Build and maintain strong and active bidirectional relationships and engagement with key constituencies.

Required Qualifications*

  • A Bachelor’s degree in an applicable field;
  • Strong experience in communications and public policy;
  • Excellent writing and communication skills;
  • Experience using metrics to track success.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days. This job may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.