Senior Media Relations Specialist in the Office of Public Affairs

Texas Medical Center-Houston, TX

Senior Media Relations Specialist in the Office of Public Affairs

Location: Texas Medical Center-Houston, Texas

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Category: Media/Communications

UTHealth Houston General Administration

Requisition #: 240001RA

Can you create a winning media pitch? Are you a great writer? Do you know what makes a good news story? We are looking for someone who will work within our Public Affairs Department to promote the heart and soul of what makes UTHealth Houston so special.

UTHealth Houston is looking for a Senior Media Relations Specialist who will be responsible for promoting the university's strategic priorities and protecting the university's brand by developing and executing media, public relations, and social media strategies to inform and engage external and internal audiences. You must be able to foster relationships with faculty, staff, and reporters. Excellent pitching and writing, a sense for news, and communication skills are key. You will join an energetic team of people covering seven health-related schools as we tell their stories to local, state, national, and international media.

We seek someone who can multitask while creating and executing highly effective media campaigns supporting and enhancing UTHealth Houston’s three-part mission of education, research, and patient care. A strong writing/media relations/news background is desired. We prefer people who have worked in healthcare public relations or who have a medical or science background. But at the core of all of this is being a good writer.

This role is vital to supporting the university's three-part mission of education, research, and clinical practice by creating campaigns and content to tell the stories of UTHealth Houston and elevate the brand, using tools including news releases, social media posts, photos, graphics, and video. Responsible for high-profile beats within the university's schools, editing and communications, and leading strategic media relations campaigns. Strong communication, collaboration, writing, news judgment, and creative idea skills are required.

All candidates must provide writing samples to be considered for the position, which can be attached and uploaded into the system through the File Attachments section. This is the same way you uploaded your resume.

Cover letters are highly recommended - tell us what you would bring to the role and why you want to join the UTHealth Houston team. The easiest way to attach a cover letter for this role would be the same method how you upload a resume and the writing samples through the File Attachments section of the application.

This is a full-time position eligible for benefits. The main office is in The Texas Medical Center, and you will need transportation to get to other locations on the UTHealth Houston campus and around the city as necessary. You will be covered by our health care insurance, which is employer-sponsored to cover all employees, and will participate in a pension plan administered by the State of Texas. This role is full-time, salaried, and classified as exempt. Employees will work a hybrid schedule after a training period. You will need to come into the office at least one day a week.

What we do here changes the world. UTHealth Houston is Texas’ resource for healthcare education, innovation, scientific discovery, and excellence in patient care. That’s where you come in.

Once you join us you won't want to leave. It’s because we reward our team for the excellent service they provide. Our total rewards package includes the benefits you’d expect from a top healthcare organization (benefits, insurance, etc.), plus:

  • 100% paid medical premiums for our full-time employees

  • Generous time off (holidays, preventative leave day, both vacation and sick time – all of which equates to around 37-38 days per year)

  • The longer you stay, the more vacation you’ll accrue!

  • Longevity Pay (Monthly payments after two years of service)

  • Build your future with our awesome retirement/pension plan!

We take care of our employees! As a world-renowned institution, our employees’ wellbeing is important to us. We offer work/life services such as…

  • Free financial and legal counseling

  • Free mental health counseling services

  • Gym membership discounts and access to wellness programs

  • Other employee discounts including entertainment, car rentals, cell phones, etc.

  • Resources for child and elder care

  • Plus many more!

Position Key Accountabilities:

  • Leads strategic media relations campaigns for university-wide initiatives and events. Assists with social media strategy and execution for main university platforms.

  • Works with key experts on high-profile beats to identify media opportunities; creates and pitches story ideas and responds to breaking news media requests on a tight deadline; arranges interviews with subject matter experts and media; escorts media on campus. Collaborates with faculty, staff, students, partners at teaching hospitals, and other constituents to communicate strategic news. Attends key meetings and events related to beats.

  • Writes news releases and pitches about medical, scientific discovery, clinical trials, dental, nursing, public health, and bioinformatics news applicable to beats, including new and published research, innovation, education, and clinical care; generates feature story ideas related to specific beats. Writes social media short stories and introductory copy.

  • Assists in creating and supplying photos and video content related to specific beats of social media, YouTube, and media requests; writes scripts as needed. Posts news content using a content management system on UTHealth Houston's website. Schedules content for social media as needed.

  • Assists in editing for print or visual content from team members.

  • Tracks, clips, and tags media relations activities through an online news monitoring service and news archive; provides media hit reports to faculty and staff experts. Writes content, uploads, and sends out reports for Media Relations media hits newsletter to leadership and staff.

  • Leads media training for university content experts.

  • Trains lower-level staff on content management systems, media clipping services, posting on wire services, and how to post on social media.

  • Appropriately guards UTHealth's interests/reputation and patient confidentiality while respecting the public's right to know.

  • Staffs the media hotline and serves as a first responder on UTHealth Houston's emergency communications team.

  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Certification/Skills:

  • Excellent written communication skills, including writing on deadline.

  • Excellent verbal communication skills, including interviewing skills.

  • Proficiency in grammar, spelling and AP Style.

  • Excellent editing skills for print or visual media.

  • Knowledge of Microsoft Word, Outlook

  • Knowledge of Content Management System.

  • Ability to identify news.

  • Ability to multitask and prioritize deadlines.

  • Experience with online news media clipping service preferred

  • Photography skills preferred.

  • Exhibits required job knowledge.

  • Demonstrates personal effectiveness and accountability.

  • Delivers quality student, patient and customer services.

  • Exhibits teamwork and collaboration.

  • Exemplifies strong ethics, integrity and respect for others

  • Adheres to all work environment, health, safety and compliance standards.

  • Leads and develops others.

  • Sets vision, strategy and priorities for areas of responsibility.

Minimum Education:

Bachelor's degree in English, journalism, communications, or an allied field required.

Minimum Experience:

Four years in public relations, communications, writing/editing, or a related field is required. Experience with online news media clipping service, medical news, or health sciences writing is preferred.

Physical Requirements:

Exerts up to 20 pounds of force occasionally and/or up to 10 pounds frequently and/or a negligible amount constantly to move objects.

Security Sensitive:

This job class may contain positions that are security sensitive and thereby subject to the provisions of Texas Education Code § 51.215

Residency Requirement:

Employees must permanently reside and work in the State of Texas.

If you are looking for a great healthcare career in Houston, visithttp://go.uth.edu/careers!

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth)

Established in 1972 by The University of Texas System Board of Regents, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) is Houston’s Health University and Texas’ resource for health care education, innovation, scientific discovery and excellence in patient care. The most comprehensive academic health center in the UT System and the U.S. Gulf Coast region, UTHealth Houston is home to schools of biomedical informatics, biomedical sciences, dentistry, nursing and public health and the John P. and Kathrine G. McGovern Medical School. UTHealth Houston includes The University of Texas Harris County Psychiatric Center, as well as the growing clinical practices UT Physicians, UT Dentists and UT Health Services. The university’s primary teaching hospitals are Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center, Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital and Harris Health Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital.

UTHealth Benefits

UTHealth Houston offers a comprehensive and competitive benefits package. For more information on our benefits programs please refer to the UTHealth Houston Office of Benefits Website.

https://www.uth.edu/benefits/

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

UTHealth Houston is committed to providing equal opportunity in all employment-related activities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, gender identity or expression, veteran status or any other basis prohibited by law or university policy. Reasonable accommodation, based on disability or religious observances, will be considered in accordance with applicable law and UTHealth Houston policy. The University maintains affirmative action programs with respect to women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and eligible veterans in accordance with applicable law.

UTHealthHoustonhas adopted a policy consistent with CMS regulations to protect our patients and university community from exposure to COVID-19. This policy affects all employees, residents, fellows, students, contractors, new hires, visiting scholars program participants, adjunct faculty, and volunteers who work, train, or collaborate at the John S. Dunn Behavioral Science Center.

In addition, all UTHealthHouston​​​​​​​employees who are assigned to work at a location that is subject to the affiliated partner’s hospital, clinical offices, or agency are required to abide by UTHealth’sHoustonrules and regulations, as well as the affiliate’s rules and regulations, including COVID-19 vaccination and safety requirements.

Work location is based on the needs of the department and may be adjusted.