Director of Communications

Apply now Job no: 518193
Work type: Staff Full Time
Campus: UMass Amherst
Department: Athletics
Pay Grade: 27
Categories: Athletics

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

Serve as the Director of Communications under the direct supervision of the Associate Athletic Director, Communications and Broadcasting. Assist with the supervision of the department’s promotional and public relations efforts for all 21 intercollegiate varsity sports within the Division I FBS program, while enhancing the overall image and brand of the University of Massachusetts and UMass Athletics.


Essential Functions

  • Assist the Associate Athletic Director, Communications and Broadcasting in planning, coordinating and directing media and public relations activities including, but not limited to: establishing image and branding mechanisms; interaction with and building relationships with local, regional and national media members and outlets; keeping abreast of current trends and developments in the field through social media platforms, publications, seminars, conferences and peer group associations; preparation and dispersal of media materials; coordinating and activating gameday and special event operations; coordinating coach and student-athlete nominations for University, NCAA, conference, national and state awards; coordinating, preparing for and administering press conferences and interviews; maintaining and creating editorial content for, the official department website, and other department digital and printed publications, including social media platforms; conceptualizing and organizing photography efforts; maintaining statistics and records.

  • Support the Associate Athletic Director of Communications and Broadcasting with department budget – specifically items related to travel, technology upgrades and student-staffing.  Assist Associate Athletic Director of Communications and Broadcasting with relationship management of third-party website and graphic design partners.  Serve as communication staff liaison to third-party media and marketing rights partner, and help support the groups revenue and engagement goals. 

  • Serve as the primary media relations contact for sport programs as assigned (i.e. one of football, men’s or women’s basketball or ice hockey and a combination of Olympic Sports). Daily responsibilities include, but are not limited to, roster and biography maintenance, scheduling interviews and media opportunities, maintaining and creating content for sport-specific social media platforms, supervising and staffing home events to assist with oversight of media work areas and media members, game operations and statistics keeping, dispersing relevant and accurate information to coaches, opponents and media members prior to and after each competition and organizing and archiving photography images.

  • Maintain daily contact with coaches, student-athletes and athletic staff in an effort to generate potential human interest and feature stories that will enhance the University and UMass Athletics’ image and brand. Disseminating potential human interest and feature stories to media members in an effort to place positive public relations pieces in local, regional and national media outlets through various mediums including, but not limited to, newspapers, magazines, television, radio and internet publications.

  • Establish and maintain statistics, records, and team and individual information that could be used by the University, UMass Athletics, conference(s) and various outside organizations concerning historical and current information pertaining to a coach, student-athlete and/or program.  Create, prepare and dispense media materials including, but not limited to, rosters, personnel biographies, schedules, press releases, media advisories, media guides, preseason and postseason prospectus and written and/or visual digital content.

  • Serve as a liaison for assigned sport programs between the athletic department and media members and outlets, general public and University community while establishing personal contacts and providing information as requested.

  • Interact with campus officials, athletics administrators and staff, coaches, student-athletes, media members, department constituents, alumni and spectators.


Other Functions

Performs other duties as assigned.


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

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution required.
  • Four year’s experience in an NCAA Division I communications/sports information/media relations office, or comparable experience required.
  • Advanced knowledge of PC and Apple computers.
  • Advanced knowledge and skills using desktop publishing, digital media and graphic design, Adobe Creative Suite, social media platforms, StatCrew software and NCAA Live Stats software.
  • Skills in written and verbal communication and editing.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to work nights, weekends and holidays.
  • Working knowledge of and strict adherence to NCAA, conference(s) and University policies, rules and regulations.


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

Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution in Communications, English, Sports Management or similar fields.


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical Office Environment Activity.


Work Schedule

Varied schedule based on the demands of the position.  Nights, weekends and holidays are required.


Salary Information

Level 27

PSU Hiring Ranges


Special Instructions to Applicants

Along with your application, please submit a resume, cover letter, and contact information for three professional references. The position may remain open until filled. 


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.

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The University of Massachusetts is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action, Title IX employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age over 40, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, marital status, or other protected class.