Manager of Public Relations

Sarah Lawrence College
Bronxville, New York
Medical benefits
Feb 19, 2019
Metro Area
New York
Full Time

Sarah Lawrence College seeks a Manager of Public Relations who will be responsible for building regional and national visibility for and enhancing the positive public image and reputation of Sarah Lawrence College through a variety of means.  This includes the news media, social media, and external outreach to and relationship building with the community, including individuals, organizations, and government. The Manager of Public Relations will report to the Assistant Vice President of Marketing & Communications.


Media Relations:

  • Develop an overall media outreach plan for the College to promote key initiatives, news, and special events on a local, regional, and national level
  • Work with college leadership, including the Office of the President, to develop a strong institutional position in the press and significantly raise the College’s visibility
  • Develop annual, seasonal, and opportunistic PR strategies and plans, including messaging, strategic timing, channels, and tactics as part of broader integrated marketing efforts
  • Serve as first point of contact for all media inquiries, serving as spokesperson for the College or referring inquiries to senior College administrators for comment, consulting on and developing comments as necessary
  • Write press releases to issue College news and to promote College activities, including events
  • Place stories and opinion pieces in local, regional, and national media outlets
  • Actively pitch faculty and administrators as experts to the media; field requests from the media for such experts; support faculty media activities including editorial assistance as requested for opinion articles and outreach to media for placement; pitch stories on exceptional students, faculty, and alumni as appropriate
  • Monitor the media for mentions of Sarah Lawrence College and its people in order to share these news items publicly and inform the internal community
  • Manage the News & Events sections of the public website, posting press releases, writing headlines/blurbs for media mentions, and managing the public events calendar (determining which events are shared on the public site, working with organizers to obtain descriptions, etc.)
  • Help to lead issues/crisis protocols and response
  • Hire and supervise student worker(s) to contribute to writing efforts as well as promotion of events open to the public through local media and other off-campus communications vehicles
  • Consult on paid advertising opportunities with AVP

Community and Government Relations:

  • Promote the image and positive presence of the College in the local community
  • Coordinate with colleagues in the College who have relationships with community members and government officials to ensure a unified voice and message to these constituents
  • Maintain and build relationships with key government, cultural, educational, and organizational leaders in the city of Yonkers, village of Bronxville, county of Westchester, Hudson Valley region, and state of New York to advance College interests and identify opportunities for students, faculty, and administrators
  • Serve as liaison with neighborhood associations
  • Represent the College at local official and community events
  • Help organize recurring events including President’s annual community holiday party and community leader receptions; organize events as needed to build or maintain relationships with external groups or individuals
  • Supervise one direct report whose role is to grow the Friends of the College program and foster community relations


  • College Guides: Work closely with the Office of Admission to review submissions to college guides, with specific responsibility for narrative sections of surveys
  • Writing/editing: Develop talking points for President and other senior administrators for community activities; other miscellaneous writing assignments as needed


  • Bachelor's degree in public relations, communications, journalism, or relevant area of study; master’s degree preferred
  • Minimum of 5-7 years of experience in progressively senior management of communications or public relations; experience in higher education preferred
  • Significant experience developing and executing a consistent approach and framework across external communications efforts and channels with measurable results. Proven experience in crisis communications
  • Excellent writing skills including writing for the web, speaking points, press releases.
  • Ability to lead and work as part of a team including cross-functional teams. This is a hands-on, roll up your sleeves role. Everyone works together to achieve success.
  • Social media fluency and demonstrated experience using social media as part of an overall media/public relations strategy
  • Technical aptitude required to manage web content using a Content Management System such as Cascade Server or similar systems
  • Previous supervisory experience required
  • Ability to attend after hours events, deliver presentations, interact with senior officials and donors.

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