News/Media Relations Director

Updated: 2 months ago
Location: New Market, VIRGINIA

Note for Current UM Employees

Current employees must apply internally via connectU >

Definition of Class

This position directs, develops, and implements a full-service media relations strategy that supports the goals and objectives of The University of Mississippi. The incumbent leads and directs daily media efforts, creates and deploys strategies that support university goals and objectives, provides strategic media analysis for campus partners, and leads and supervises support staff.

Examples of Work Performed
  • Develops and implements strategic, long-term media relations strategy that supports the university’s goals and objectives.
  • Provides strategic media analysis, training and counsel to Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Office of the Chancellor, members of Senior Leadership Group and other campus partners.
  • Develops, delivers, and manages institutional responses and messaging including reputational and other complex issues.
  • Creates and organizes press briefings, media events, official statements, etc. and manages the approval process with internal stakeholders and partners.
  • Gathers data and provides reports on analytics, media metrics and other objectives.
  • Serves as the university’s spokesperson and primary contact for media outlets (state, national, and international levels) to deliver institutional responses and messages.
  • Acts as liaison between the University and journalists at the local, state, national, and international levels by providing timely responses to requests for information and initiating stories in appropriate media.
  • Collaborates with senior administration and other leaders across campus to develop responses to timely media inquiries.
  • Develops and leads media training sessions with senior administration, faculty, and staff across campus.
  • Oversees and provides editorial leadership and direction for communications specialists, editors and support staff producing content for Ole Miss News, Inside Ole Miss, and other publications.
  • Manages and directs team of communication specialists, editors and other staff to create news releases, feature stories and other print and/or digital communications pieces.
  • Oversees editorial direction of the university’s news website, Ole Miss News.
  • Provides guidance and supervision for support staff.
  • Performs similar or related duties as assigned.

Essential Functions

Essential Functions
These essential functions include, but are not limited to, the following. Additional essential functions may be identified and included by the hiring department

  • Leads and directs daily media efforts.
  • Develops and executes strategies that support departmental goals and objectives.
  • Provides guidance, leadership, and supervision for support staff.

  • Minimum Education/Experience

    Experience/Educational Requirements:
    Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university.


    Five (5) years of experience in media relations, news media, higher education or related field.

    Substitution Statement: Related experience may be substituted for education, on a basis set forth and approved by the Department of Human Resources.

    Interview Requirements: Any candidate who is called for an interview must notify the Department of Equal Opportunity/Regulatory Compliance in writing of any reasonable accommodation needed prior to the date of the interview.

    Salary/Wage Information

    To learn more about our pay structure and view our salary ranges, click here to visit the Compensation page of our Human Resources website. This link is provided for general pay information. Hourly rate or salary may vary depending on qualifications, experience, and departmental budget. Note: Unclassified positions (faculty, executives, researchers and coaches) do not have established salary ranges.

    EEO Statement

    The University of Mississippi provides equal opportunity in any employment practice, education program, or education activity to all qualified persons. The University complies with all applicable laws regarding equal opportunity and affirmative action and does not unlawfully discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment based upon race, color, gender, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, citizenship, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or genetic information.

    Background Check Statement

    The University of Mississippi is committed to providing a safe campus community. UM conducts background investigations for applicants being considered for employment. Background investigations include a criminal history record check, and when appropriate, a financial (credit) report or driving history check.

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