Caltech is a world-renowned science and engineering institute that marshals some of the world's brightest minds and most innovative tools to address fundamental scientific questions. We thrive on finding and cultivating talented people who are passionate about what they do. Join us and be a part of the diverse Caltech community.
Caltech's Office of Strategic Communications (OSC) works to define, promote, and protect Caltech's image, reputation, and brand. We create and distribute a wide range of content across multiple formats and platforms to tell the story of Caltech's people, their research, and how they create knowledge and advance discoveries that impact the world.
Reporting to the Director of Research Communications and Media Relations, the Media Relations Manager will interact with news media and in collaboration with Caltech faculty, administration, staff, and students, to promote the Institute and its work; particular emphasis will be placed on key strategic priorities identified by OSC and the Institute's leadership, and on amplifying the Institute's position as a world-renowned science and engineering research institution.
This is an Essential Reporting position. In the event of an emergency on campus, an employee designated as essential reporting has essential job skills that are needed for response and recovery and is expected to report to Campus as soon as possible.
In addition to general media relations management and strategy, the Media Relations Manager will:
Serve as a front-line point-of-contact for general media inquiries, including those involving research communications as well as institute-level media queries. To facilitate these communications, the Media Relations Manager is expected to develop contacts and maintain positive relationships with key representatives of the media;
Play a leading role in coordinating and managing Caltech's media response in the event of significant local and major international earthquakes, serving as the main liaison, with the assistance of others within OSC, between media and seismologists;
Act as coordinator and on-site supervisor for documentary filming on campus. This will include scheduling crews, coordinating with building and campus administrators, assigning on-site supervision, managing contract negotiations, etc.
Plan, coordinate, and manage press conferences (i.e., in the event of Nobel Prizes or significant news announcements) and the media aspect of campus events with expected media presence;
Develop and maintain, with the assistance of others in OSC, Caltech's media distribution lists;
Manage media tracking and monitoring, including assisting with the preparation and dissemination of regular media monitoring reports.
The Media Relations Manager is expected to maintain a keen awareness of the higher education landscape and world events with potential connections with or impact to Caltech. The individual will work closely with colleagues in OSC to ensure that content is strategic, engaging, and coordinated across platform/channel and appropriate for Caltech's target audiences.
Essential Job Duties
Work on complex assignments including press releases, media pitches, and media briefings on a variety of newsworthy topics including research, events, and announcements.
Respond to media inquiries for faculty experts and institutional comment.
Manage the media aspect of special events, press conferences, and briefings, including the development of strategic media plans, inviting targeted media, preparing press packets, welcoming media, etc.
Ensure sound editorial judgment, professional principles, and ethics are reflected in all work products.
Maintain contacts with local and national media outlets; know assignment and city editors on a first-name basis; meet with them periodically throughout the year in person or at events to maintain positive relationship.
Develop and grow network of internal and external contacts to identify and address communications needs and channels of distribution; maintains positive relationships with faculty, staff & students.
Assist in efforts to proactively position Caltech's researchers and expertise in strategic priority areas, helping to showcase area of leadership and contribution.
Serve as commercial and documentary filming liaison. Act as coordinator and on-site supervisor for commercial and documentary filming on campus. Includes scheduling crews, coordinating with building and campus administrators, assigning on-site supervision, contract negotiations, and other related duties.
Use online media directories and databases to identify appropriate media outlets for news pitches.
Participate in a regular and continued assessment of Caltech's positioning in the broader media landscape, helping to identify opportunities for building recognition of Caltech and its researchers.
In addition, he/she will:
Participate in regular editorial/content meetings.
Work collaboratively with the Research Communications and Media Relations team to develop materials for distribution to targeted media outlets.
Pitch story ideas that can be produced across various formats, including print, online, and multimedia.
Develop and grow a network of contacts throughout Caltech to identify and address communications needs and channels of distribution.
Work closely with faculty, administration, staff, and students to deliver factual and appropriate content that also adheres to the Caltech style and promotes Caltech's interests and priorities.
Bachelor's degree in journalism, communications, marketing, public relations or a science field required
7 years or more of news media or public relations experience required
Some evening and weekend work will be required. This position requires 24-hour availability in the event of an emergency. May need to travel by car or airplane for assignments.
Must have a valid California Driver's License.
Excellent writing and organizational skills; project management a plus; ability to handle several projects simultaneously and to work as a member of a creative team; computer experience required; database knowledge helpful; ability to write under tight deadlines essential.
Knowledge of the news media- their deadlines, needs, and organization-is preferred.
Experience in higher education public relations helpful.
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
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The California Institute of Technology (Caltech) is a world-renowned science and engineering research and education institution, where extraordinary faculty and students seek answers to complex questions, discover new knowledge, lead innovation, and transform our future.