University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, Michigan)

Posted 11 months ago

How to Apply

A cover letter and resume are required for consideration for this position. Include the cover letter as the first page of your resume when submitted through this website. Please describe how your skills and experience directly relate to the specific duties and qualifications for this position. Up to three writing samples also should be included.

Job Summary

The Office of the Vice President for Communications is seeking a highly skilled communicator for a key role writing about the University of Michigan as a dynamic workplace and world-class institution of higher education.

This writer must be a skilled and versatile communications professional with a well-honed ability to quickly gather, organize and summarize critical information. Good listening skills, and strong writing and storytelling skills, with creativity and ingenuity, are essential. This person will plan, prepare and disseminate stories through a printed newspaper and online website.

For this opening, we are seeking a communicator with a track record of telling important stories, and who can develop and share news with a diverse audience of primarily faculty and staff readers. A successful candidate for this position should be able to demonstrate concise, high-quality storytelling through written narratives. Experience with a multimedia approach, when appropriate, is a plus. Diligence toward accuracy will be important.  The primary focus of this position will be sharing news about the University of Michigan with its faculty and staff. These stories will range from faculty and staff profiles to commencement; from routine news briefs and award listings to stories of innovative programs and important new initiatives; from workplace features to deadline event coverage. A talent for time-management and ability to balance the various deadlines of these duties is crucial.

We anticipate the person filling this position will spend about 80 percent of work time on writing and 20 percent on other duties within the scope of the University Record, such as making photo assignments and helping post stories to the Record’s website. While this is primarily a writing role, this person may also step in as a copy editor when needed, so editing experience will be helpful.

Required Qualifications*

  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field, and work history of relevant progressive work experience in journalism, writing or editing.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to cover breaking news and explain complex issues and ideas in an easy-to-understand approach.
  • Ability to understand and execute appropriate news judgment for an official university publication.
  • Ability to work effectively as part of a team.
  • Knowledge of Associated Press style.

Desired Qualifications*

  • At least five years of experience in a related field.
  • The ability to quickly understand, analyze and recommend courses of action for complex issues and effectively communicate complex ideas.
  • Excellent organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Demonstrated ability to use a multimedia approach to communicating news and other important information.
  • The ability to set and meet goals while working both independently and as part of a team.
  • An understanding of issues facing higher education in general, and the University of Michigan in particular.
  • Ability to take publication-quality photographs.
  • Knowledge of online news presentation; basic understanding of HTML/XML and WordPress.
  • Good judgment.

Work Schedule

A 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday work schedule is typical, but some night and weekend work is expected.

Additional Information

The University Record TeamThe University Record is the official source for faculty-staff news at the University of Michigan, and is part of the U-M Office of the Vice President for Communications. News is posted to the Record website daily and a print edition is distributed weekly (Monday) during the academic year and biweekly during the summer. A companion University Record email newsletter is sent daily to more than 57,000 subscribers during the academic year and weekly during the summer. The Record staff includes an editor, an associate editor, a graphic designer and a sales manager, in addition to the open writer’s position.

Reporting StructureReports to the University Record editor, who reports to the assistant vice president for communications/public affairs.

Background Screening

The University of Michigan conducts background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer and may use a third-party administrator to conduct background checks. Background checks will be performed in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days.  The review and selection process may begin as early as the eighth day after posting. This opening may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

Job Features

Job CategoryAcademic, Communications