Assistant Director of Communications & Content Strategy - College of Engineering

University of Massachusetts Amherst
UMass Amherst
Closing date
Oct 22, 2021

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Administrative Jobs
Institutional & Business Affairs, Communications & Marketing

Job Details

Job no: 508773
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Dean - Engineering
Union: PSU
Categories: Public Relations, Marketing, Communications, Professional Staff Union (PSU)

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.

Job Summary

The Assistant Director of Communications and Content Strategy in the College of Engineering (CoE) is responsible for producing compelling and engaging print, website, and social media content to raise the visibility of the CoE with internal and external audiences, including prospective and current students, faculty, alumni, donors, and peers in higher education. In cooperation with members of the college’s communications and marketing team, this position will be responsible for the complete content lifecycle from story cultivation and prioritization to distribution and metrics reporting, ensuring that all content meets university and college brand standards and aligns with strategic goals.

Essential Functions

  • Work closely with the Director of Communications to develop, implement, and manage a content and messaging strategy for the College of Engineering.
  • Collaborate, consult and actively participate in new idea generation, brainstorming concepts, and make recommendations for creative ways to accomplish storytelling goals.
  • Create content calendars to maximize and leverage content in every area, to every audience including developing and prioritizing content for web, video, social, print, broadcast email, e-newsletter, and other vehicles.
  • Oversee the college’s social media presence. Ensure that all posts on social media are engaging and accurate. Maintain a deep knowledge of current and evolving social media platforms, trends, and best practices. Monitor the reach and response of posts to ensure we are reaching our social media strategic goals.
  • Generate ideas and copy for communications that engage external and internal constituents and effectively promote the college.
  • Plan, write and coordinate stories, profiles, and events on the college website including managing and uploading material for the main webpage. Manage weekly e-newsletter for the college.
  • Assist in redesign of the College of Engineering website, with a focus on generating high-impact content to improve audience engagement.
  • Proofread, edit, and approve content before it is presented to the public.
  • Serve as a member of the college’s events committee, with a focus on 1) creating email and print marketing for high-profile events and 2) generating innovative ideas and diverse strategies, including program content and organization, that would increase engagement, awareness and event attendance. Provide assistance as a committee team member with day-of execution of events.
  • Supervise student communications assistants, as needed

Other Functions

  • Perform related duties as assigned or required to meet department, college, or university goals and objectives.
  • Understand responsibilities with respect to conflicts of interest and behave in ways consistent both with law and with university policy.
  • Contribute toward creating a positive and respectful workplace defined by personal and professional competence, integrity, and collaboration.
  • Understand and contribute to implementation of departmental and institutional goals for achieving non-discrimination and creating a respectful, inclusive environment that is supportive of diversity.
  • Use access to sensitive and/or not yet public university related information only in the performance of the responsibilities of position and exercise care to prevent unnecessary disclosure to others.

Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism, Communication, Marketing, Public Relations, Creative Writing, Engineering or a related field and 3 years of relevant work experience in communications, marketing, event planning, or public relations. A Master's degree in Journalism, Communication, Marketing, Public Relations, Creative Writing, Engineering or a related field may be substituted for two years of the required experience.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including the ability to write grammatically correct content for publishing, construct compelling promotional copy, and translate complex technical information for non-experts.
  • Experience with social media content creation across a variety of platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.). Working knowledge of web analytics and social media monitoring/measurement tools to deliver data-driven insights.
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to interact effectively, and create and maintain harmonious relationships with a diverse population of staff, faculty, students, and off-campus constituents.
  • Excellent project management and facilitation skills with high-level attention to detail.
  • Independent initiative. Must have the ability to stay on task and work productively with a minimum amount of supervision.
  • Willingness to take on a variety of tasks related to the successful operation of the communications team.
  • Ability to work on many projects simultaneously, and to set and meet deadlines.
  • Advanced computer usage skills, including Microsoft suite of software and Google documents.

Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Prior experience working in a large public research university.
  • Supervisory experience.
  • Copy editing experience.
  • Experience developing marketing copy for fundraising or other revenue-generating initiatives.

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical office environment.

Additional Information

As the #1 public college of engineering in New England and a top 30 public engineering program nationally, the College of Engineering at UMass Amherst strives for excellence in education, research, and innovation as it pursues its goal of joining the top 25. The college’s 150+ faculty members work across five academic departments and are dedicated to research, with R&D reaching over $47 million, and effective teaching and mentoring of the college’s 2,300+ undergraduate and 600+ graduate students. From world class research opportunities at the lab bench and in the field, to a breadth of academic and experiential offerings including hands-on design projects, innovation competitions, and co-op opportunities, the College of Engineering prepares students to lead, innovate and succeed.

Work Schedule

Monday – Friday, 37.5 hours/week, with occasional evenings and weekends as needed

Salary Information

Level 25

PSU Salary Chart

Special Instructions to Applicants

Along with your application, please submit a resume, cover letter, and the names and contact information of three professional references. Provide two writing samples or a link(s) to an online portfolio/samples of your work. Priority application deadline of June 29, 2021. Search may remain open until a suitable candidate pool has been identified.

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University. To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans. It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

Advertised: Jun 14 2021 Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close:


The University of Massachusetts Amherst is one of the preeminent public research universities in America. Nestled in idyllic Amherst, Massachusetts—often called “The top college town in North America”—the campus is consistently ranked among the top public research universities in the nation, and offers a rich cultural environment in a rural setting close to major urban centers. 

As one of the nation's top public research universities – as measured by national and international rankings, academic citations, and research funding – the campus spends more than $180 million on research each year, demonstrating its contribution to the nation’s position as a technological and economic leader. The university works in conjunction with academic, government, and private partners to translate new knowledge and scientific discoveries into technical innovations and scholarly works that create opportunities for students, faculty and the public. 

Eight schools and colleges offer more than 85 undergraduate majors, 68 master’s and 48 doctoral degree programs, many counted among the top programs in the nation and world. UMass Amherst is also home to New England's premier honors college.

The 1,159 full-time faculty members are dedicated teachers and world-renowned researchers and the campus has regularly been listed among the top performers in terms of faculty awards. With over 24,000 students from all 50 states and over 70 countries, the student body is the most academically successful in the history of the campus. Students participate in 240 organizations, 21 NCAA Division I athletic teams, extensive intramurals, living-learning residence halls, community service, and internships. With one of the largest residential life systems in the nation, UMass Amherst houses approximately 12,000 students on campus. The university is enjoying a facilities renaissance, including new buildings in the sciences, the arts, and recreation. UMass Amherst is part of the Five College consortium with Smith, Mount Holyoke, Hampshire and Amherst colleges.

As an employer, the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a national leader in developing family-friendly policies, benefits and amenities designed to help faculty members develop both productive careers and satisfying personal lives. The university offers one of the nation’s most generous parental leave policies. The university is also part of the Academic Career Network, a regional consortium formed to serve dual-career couples and encourage greater diversity in the academy.


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