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At Davenport University, we know what it takes to be successful. With over 150 years of providing quality education under our belts, thousands of Davenport graduates are making an impact on the world with the knowledge and skills they learned here. Our team of faculty and staff collaborate to make this possible. Joining DU means growing and advancing your own career, while making a lasting impact on our students, colleagues and the communities in which we serve. Would you like to be part of our success? It all starts here!


This position is responsible for leading efforts and personally engaging in the planning, execution and measurement of University Communications programs and projects which are designed to deliver branded messaging to key audiences that include the general public, employees, students, alumni, donors, legislators, government leaders and other key stakeholders. Projects include media relations, publication development, web communications/social media programs, audiovisual and photographic content development, and the creation of and message support for University special events. These responsibilities are performed in an ethical manner consistent with the University's mission, vision and cultural values.


  1. Direct the creation, execution and measurement of strategic communications plans that address key stakeholder audiences and meet the objectives of internal clients.
  2. Serve as a communications consultant to internal clients, advising on strategic use of communication best practices to achieve goals and objectives.
  3. Create and/or support the development of special events, programs, award entries and announcements.
  4. Working with and/or guide the efforts of consultants to achieve public policy objectives of the University through interactions and communications with legislators and government leaders.
  5. Direct, plan, execute and measure media relations strategies that align with University goals for reputation, recruitment, retention, development and financial stability. This includes maintenance of editorial calendars and media contact lists for each campus market and archival and reporting of all University news media coverage.
  6. Cultivate positive relations with members of the news media and provide quality service in response to their inquiries.
  7. Serve as a consultant to University executives on media strategy, recommending media relations tactics and providing media training as necessary. When appropriate, serve as University spokesperson.
  8. Direct, plan, implement and measure social media programs on behalf of the University and its departments.
  9. Lead efforts for new and ongoing website development including the creation of editorial, photographic and video content and providing web traffic analysis as necessary.
  10. Lead the ongoing maintenance of the University Crisis Communication Plan and all related materials, ensuring readiness to respond to crisis situations 24/7. Crisis response may involve service as spokesperson or preparation of appropriate spokesperson(s), escorting news media, and preparation of response statements.
  11. Manage development of University publications, including planning, development of editorial and photographic content, editing, and working with external vendors on design, printing and delivery.
  12. Develop speeches and presentations for senior executives of the University.
  13. Monitor local and higher education news links/publications to inform colleagues and executives of significant stories/trends impacting or of interest to the University.
  14. Provide GREAT customer service, anticipating and exceeding the needs of our customers.
  15. Manage full-time, part-time and contract staff members, supporting and guiding them to achieve University Communications' goals and objectives, develop professionally and deliver GREAT customer service.
  16. Demonstrate and promote the University Cultural Values.
  17. Perform other duties as assigned.

POSITION PAY RANGE:  $45,000.00 - 75,000.00, Salary (Please note: Actual pay offered will be commensurate with candidate qualifications and experience, the type of role, pay equity and available funding)


  1. Bachelor's degree in communications, journalism, public relations or related field required. Master's degree preferred.
  2. Demonstrated 10-15 years successful/relevant experience.
  3. Demonstrated experience in managing communications initiatives and implementing media relations, publications, social media and web communication programs.
  4. Demonstrated experience in issues management and crisis communications planning and implementation.
  5. Strong writing and editing abilities, with demonstrated use of superior, accurate journalism, grammar and proofreading consistent with AP Stylebook.
  6. Experience in web measurement and analysis and basic understanding of information architecture and website design best practices.
  7. Ability to create content for the web, including editorial, video and photography.
  8. Competence with Dreamweaver or working directly with HTML and CSS preferred, and experience using design tools such as Photoshop, Illustrator and Flash a plus.
  9. Demonstrated ability to be self-directed and work independently.
  10. Demonstrated ability to work effectively with people of diverse backgrounds and promote a positive working environment, spirit of cooperation and positive reactions to change and conflict resolution.
  11. Excellent interpersonal, communication and presentation skills, both written and oral which transcend diverse audiences.
  12. Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively and relate well to students, parents, faculty, staff, and others while maintaining appropriate confidentiality.
  13. Demonstrated motivational and problem solving capabilities with a high degree of integrity, ethics, and dedication to the mission of the University.
  14. Ability as a consultant, advising executives and peers on best practices in communications and media relations.
  15. Ability to lead and guide the efforts of staff members and to help them to develop professionally.
  16. Must be able to work an irregular schedule, evenings or Saturday as needed, additional hours during peak times or as required.

DEPARTMENT: University Relations-Comm

WORK LOCATION:  Grand Rapids - Kraft Lake