Manager, Communications - North Valley Campus

Job Details

Job Title: Manager, Communications - North Valley Campus
Location: Gear-Up
Regular/Temporary: Regular
Full/Part Time: Full-Time
Job ID: 606124
Workplace Culture

NAU is a community devoted to student success and sustained by an unshakable commitment to our shared mission, vision, and values. We—faculty, staff, and administrators—thrive by combining our efforts and working side by side to further NAU’s culture of excellence.

Core Values One NAU side by side Student Centered | Integrity | Diversity | Service | Discovery | Excellence Northern Arizona University

Special Information

Arizona GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) is a project of Northern Arizona University (NAU), made possible by a multi-year, multi-million dollar federal grant and contributions from partner organizations. Structured under the College of Education, project administration resides with a State GEAR UP Office in Phoenix.

The purpose of GEAR UP, as authorized by Congress under the Higher Education Opportunity Act, is to help level the playing field on college access for low-income students.

Over the course of three grant cycles since 2000, NAU GEAR UP has significantly increased high school graduation and postsecondary enrollment for thousands of students from diverse communities across Arizona. In addition, through numerous partnerships and collaborations, GEAR UP has leveraged resources, built capacity, and made a variety of local and state initiatives possible so that current and future students gain opportunity to earn a degree or other postsecondary credential. For more information on NAU GEAR UP, visit:

Immigration Suppt/Sponsorship

NAU will not provide any U.S. immigration support or sponsorship for this position.

Job Description

The Communications Manager (CM), a key position in the Arizona GEAR UP 2019-26 GEAR UP grant, brings high-level, advanced communications, publications, marketing and social media expertise to the project. The CM is accountable for developing a comprehensive and professional communications strategy for Arizona GEAR UP that emphasizes grant partners as a key audience to further the GEAR UP mission, including coordinated, cohesive delivery of services to high schools (A60 schools). This position provides leadership to the program by developing college access marketing strategies; managing all aspects of the GEAR UP communications strategy, including convening of partners, the website, newsletter, social media, print publications and listservs; and preparing publications for schools. The CM reports directly to the Director, participates on the executive management team, and supervises the Marketing Content Creator, Sr.

Like all positions in the State GEAR UP Office, the CM is an important member of a team of staff serving the grant under the leadership of the Director, College of Education and NAU. The individual interacts regularly and diplomatically with a diverse group of internal and external constituents.

The ideal candidate is also committed to expanding equity and access to postsecondary education among underrepresented populations, possesses knowledge about college-going processes, and understands the systemic barriers that students face while preparing for postsecondary education. This position requires out-of-state travel to national conferences, two-to-three times annually, and occasional in-state travel to Flagstaff and rural communities in Arizona.

Essential Functions

Operations Management - 40%

  • Works closely with the Director and other GEAR UP colleagues in the implementation and successful operation of GEAR UP.
  • Advises, consults, educates, and supports project staff with their communication efforts.
  • Leads, oversees, and executes the planning and delivery of an annual convening of GEAR UP schools and grant-project partners, as well as meetings of subgroups of partners.
  • Develops and implements college access marketing strategies incorporating traditional and social media.
  • Assists in creation of reports to meet Federal or other stakeholder requirements.
  • Serves as a representative of Northern Arizona University and public higher education in state and national meetings.
  • Applies federal grant expertise to lead, meet, and/or facilitate select grant requirements and structures.
  • Participates in executive team meetings.
  • Recognizes and exercises discretion in matters of a confidential nature.
  • May be assigned other administrative projects and responsibilities.

Content Management - 40%

  • Leads the development and implementation of an integrated and cohesive communications strategy to advance AZ GEAR UP messages and brand identity; broadens awareness of programs and priorities and increases the visibility of GEAR UP across key stakeholder audiences
  • Oversees the GEAR UP website, newsletter, social media, print publications and listservs; and annual updates to the Launch, Discover &P Parent Guides for schools
  • Collaborates with subject matter experts, content contributors, and reviewers to achieve high-quality deliverables
  • Writes effectively, keeping in mind the user experience, content strategy, institutional mission, and project-wide priorities -- with the main emphasis on eliminating ambiguity
  • Creates and writes original and repurposed content that is engaging and compelling for use on websites, email campaigns, brochures, newsletters, annual reports, flyers, etc

Supervising - 15%

  • Supervises the Marketing Content Creator, Sr;establishes job expectations and standards,clearly assigning responsibility for tasks and decisions; provides specific performance feedback in a timely manner; supports employee development efforts.

Other - 5%

  • Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications
  • Bachelor’s degree in related field; AND,
  • 1-2 years of management or supervisory experience; OR,
  • 2-4 years of relevant experience; OR,
  • Any combination of relevant education and experience may be substituted for the educational requirement on a year-for-year basis.

Preferred Qualifications
  • 6 to 10 years of professional experience in journalism, public relations, marketing, advertising, or other communications-related field.
  • Master’s degree om Communications, Marketing, Public Relations, or related field.
  • Commitment to equity in education.
  • Experience related to middle and high schools, college access, working with underrepresented and diverse groups.
  • Experience writing original content for a variety of audiences and purposes.
  • Experience making presentations at meetings and conferences.
  • Experience with social marketing.
  • Experience gathering, classifying, categorizing, and readily retrieving information to provide timely and clear communications with project stakeholders and participants.
  • Bilingual – English/Spanish and/or experience with language translation project.

Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities
  • Exceptional (written/verbal) communication and presentation skills.
  • Exceptional ability to switch easily between topics, audiences, objectives, and communication channels.
  • Highly developed interpersonal skills – ability to work collaboratively and productively
  • Demonstrated ability to think creatively.
  • Excellent time-management and self-directed work style, including the ability to carry-out priorities and objectives on time and within budget.
  • Excellent grammar, spelling, and proofreading skills.
  • Understanding of basic graphic design terms and standards.
  • Commitment to providing exceptional customer service.
  • How-to knowledge of different social media outlets to maximize the benefit of each.
  • Ability to take initiative and work independently, with minimal guidance and supervision.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with different constituencies and ability to work with individuals or groups with diverse backgrounds and experience level.

COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement

As of 12/10/21, the Safer Federal Workforce employee vaccination requirement is currently suspended pending the outcome of a federal court-issued injunction. This injunction has suspended the recent executive order issued by President Biden requiring all employees of federal contractors to receive COVID-19 vaccinations. For current status of the vaccine requirement and/or questions, please visit FAQs for Employee Vaccination Requirement.

Background Information

Northern Arizona University requires satisfactory results for the following: a criminal background investigation, an employment history verification and a degree verification (in some cases) prior to employment. You may also be required to complete a fingerprint background check. Additionally, as an employer in the state of Arizona, NAU is required to participate in the federal E-Verify program that assists employers with verifying new employees' right to work in the United States. Finally, each year Northern Arizona University releases an Annual Security Report. The report is a result of a federal law known as the Clery Act. The report includes Clery reportable crime statistics for the three most recent completed calendar years and discloses procedures, practices and programs NAU uses to keep students and employees safe including how to report crimes or other emergencies occurring on campus. In addition, the Fire Safety Report is combined with the Annual Security Report for the NAU Flagstaff Mountain Campus as this campus has on-campus student housing. This report discloses fire safety policies and procedures related to on-campus student housing and statistics for fires that occurred in those facilities. If you would like a free paper copy of the report, please contact the NAUPD Records Department at (928) 523-8884 or by visiting the department at 525 E. Pine Knoll Drive in Flagstaff.


Salary range begins at $72,445. Annual salary commensurate with candidate's qualifications and related experience.

FLSA Status

This position is exempt from the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and therefore will not earn overtime or compensatory time for additional time worked.


This is a Service Professional (SPF) position. NAU offers an excellent benefit package including generous health, dental and vision insurance; participation in the Arizona State Retirement System or the Optional Retirement Program; 22 days of vacation and 10 holidays per year; and tuition reduction for employees and qualified dependents. More information on benefits at NAU is available on the Human Resources benefits website. NAU is a tobacco and smoke-free campus. Service Professionals are hired on a contract basis, renewable each 6 months according to terms of the Conditions of Professional Service. Employees offered a position will be eligible for state health plans (including NAU's BCBS Plan). New employees are eligible for benefits on the first day of the pay period following their enrollment, after their employment date. Employees will have 31 days from their start date to enroll in benefits. If a new employee chooses the ASRS retirement option, participation in the Arizona State Retirement System, and the long-term disability coverage that accompanies it, will begin on the first of the pay period following 6 months after the new employee's start date. New employees who choose to participate in the Optional Retirement Plan (ORP), which is an alternative to the ASRS plan for faculty and other appointed staff, will begin to participate on the first day of employment. Additionally, the long-term disability plan that accompanies the ORP will begin on the first day of employment.

Learning and Development

Your career at Northern Arizona University includes the opportunity for professional development. New employee on-boarding training includes courses to be completed within the first 30 days. If your position includes the supervision of a benefit-eligible employee, we offer the NAU Supervisors Academy for you to complete within your first 2 years.

Application Deadline

Applications received by April 11, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. will be given full consideration. Applications received after that date may be considered until the position is filled.

How to Apply

To apply for this position, please click on the "Apply" button on this page. You must submit your application by clicking on the "Submit" button by midnight of the application deadline. If you need assistance completing your application there are instructions available on the Human Resources website or in person in the Human Resources Department located in Building 91 on the NAU Campus - on the corner of Beaver and DuPont Streets.

If you are an individual with a disability and need reasonable accommodation to participate in the hiring process please contact the Office of Equity and Access at: 928-523-3312/TDD - 928-523-1006 or PO Box 4083, Flagstaff AZ 86011.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Northern Arizona University is a committed Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. NAU is responsive to the needs of dual career couples.

EEO is the Law Poster and Supplements

NAU is an Employer of National Service. AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and other National Service alumni are encouraged to apply.


Northern Arizona University (NAU) is a public university offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees of high quality and societal value.  Students are at the center of the NAU experience, which is guided by a dedicated and distinguished faculty committed to teaching, individual engagement, and research excellence.

Our educational programs are designed to prepare our students for personal and professional success after graduation.

Whether they earn their degrees at our historic Flagstaff campus, regionally throughout Arizona, or online, we prepare our students to achieve their human potential in ways that serve the state, the region, the nation, and the world.

If you can see yourself as part of a university community dedicated to its students and their success, NAU might be the right fit for you.

Find Us
PO Box 4113 Flagstaff, AZ 86011
United States

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