Associate Vice President, University Communications

Associate Vice President, University Communications

University Overview

The University of Pennsylvania, the largest private employer in Philadelphia, is a world-renowned leader in education, research, and innovation. This historic, Ivy League school consistently ranks among the top 10 universities in the annual U.S. News & World Report survey. Penn has 12 highly-regarded schools that provide opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and continuing education, all influenced by Penn's distinctive interdisciplinary approach to scholarship and learning. As an employer Penn has been ranked nationally on many occasions with the most recent award from Forbes who named Penn one of America's Best Employers By State in 2021.

Penn offers a unique working environment within the city of Philadelphia. The University is situated on a beautiful urban campus, with easy access to a range of educational, cultural, and recreational activities. With its historical significance and landmarks, lively cultural offerings, and wide variety of atmospheres, Philadelphia is the perfect place to call home for work and play.

The University offers a competitive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits, a wealth of health and wellness programs and resources, and much more.

COVID-19 vaccination is a requirement for all positions at the University of Pennsylvania. New hires are expected to be fully vaccinated before beginning work at the University. For more information about Penn's vaccine requirements and the use of Penn Open Pass, visit the Penn COVID-19 Response website for the latest information.

Posted Job Title
Associate Vice President, University Communications

Job Profile Title
Associate Vice President

Job Description Summary
The Associate Vice President serves as the chief operating officer for the
division of University Communications, Penn's central office for University-wide news publications, press releases, media relations, social media, video
production, digital design and website management, and public affairs.

Job Description

The Associate Vice President (AVP) serves as the chief operating officer for the division of University Communications, Penn's central office for University-wide news publications, press releases, media relations, social media, video production, digital design and website management, and public affairs. The AVP works closely with the Vice President to chart the strategic direction for the division; advise and assist in crisis and issues management and act in the Vice President's place as needed. The AVP is responsible for day-to-day management of the news and media relations team, the web, digital and visual arts team, the social media team, and the internal communications/publications team. The managers of those groups report directly to the AVP who works with them daily in distilling, packaging, and amplifying key university messages across theap propriate channels. Key among them is Penn Today, the University's digital platform and daily newsletter reaching 230,845 subscribers.

The AVP works with the direct reports on managing their performance and that of their staff members, mentoring them and providing opportunities for professional growth. The AVP

coordinates with communicators who manage media relations within colleges, schools and units to ensure consistent messaging and priorities, and engages directly with leadership from across the University, advising on the many issues impacting the mission and interests of the University.

The AVP must serve as a steward of Penn, communicating about and supporting University policies and positions determined by the leadership of the University. The AVP serves as communications liaison to the University's Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee and University Lab Animal Resources department regarding matters relating to the use of animals in biomedical research.

Required Experience

Candidates for the position of Associate Vice President for University Communications must possess extensive knowledge of communications practices and strategies; direct experience in

media relations; understanding and experience with the use of social media for advancing institutional messages; have supervisory experience in the design and production of web and print publications; experience in providing oversight to video productions; and successful experience in managing crises. A minimum of 15 years in the communications field is required.

Knowledge and understanding of the issues impacting higher education generally and Penn specifically is desired.

The position requires good writing and editing skills; the ability to work collaboratively with teams both within the division but also across the University; good interpersonal skills, particularly as it relates to supervising staff; and a genuine commitment to the value of diversity in the workplace.

The AVP must be a person with great integrity and the ability to handle sensitive and confidential material. A good sense of humor and the capacity to manage through situations that are stressful and those that might seem ambiguous are great pluses.

A Bachelor's Degree is required.

Job Location - City, State
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Department / School
President's Center

Pay Range
$50,000.00 - $350,000.00

Affirmative Action Statement
Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class.

Special Requirements
Background check required after a conditional job offer is made. Consideration of the background check will be tailored to the requirements of the job.

University Benefits
  • Health, Life, and Flexible Spending Accounts: Penn offers comprehensive medical, prescription, behavioral health, dental, vision, and life insurance benefits to protect you and your family's health and welfare. You can also use flexible spending accounts to pay for eligible health care and dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Tuition: Take advantage of Penn's exceptional tuition benefits. You, your spouse, and your dependent children can get tuition assistance here at Penn. Your dependent children are also eligible for tuition assistance at other institutions.
  • Retirement: Penn offers generous retirement plans to help you save for your future. Penn's Basic, Matching, and Supplemental retirement plans allow you to save for retirement on a pre-tax or Roth basis. Choose from a wide variety of investment options through TIAA and Vanguard.
  • Time Away from Work: Penn provides you with a substantial amount of time away from work during the course of the year. This allows you to relax, take vacations, attend to personal affairs, recover from illness or injury, spend time with family-whatever your personal needs may be.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: In partnership with Genworth Financial, Penn offers faculty and staff (and your eligible family members) long-term care insurance to help you cover some of the costs of long-term care services received at home, in the community or in a nursing facility. If you apply when you're newly hired, you won't have to provide proof of good health or be subject to underwriting requirements. Eligible family members must always provide proof of good health and are subject to underwriting.
  • Wellness and Work-life Resources: Penn is committed to supporting our faculty and staff as they balance the competing demands of work and personal life. That's why we offer a wide variety of programs and resources to help you care for your health, your family, and your work-life balance.
  • Professional and Personal Development: Penn provides an array of resources to help you advance yourself personally and professionally.
  • University Resources: As a member of the Penn community, you have access to a wide range of University resources as well as cultural and recreational activities. Take advantage of the University's libraries and athletic facilities, or visit our arboretum and art galleries. There's always something going on at Penn, whether it's a new exhibit at the Penn Museum, the latest music or theater presentation at the Annenberg Center, or the Penn Relays at Franklin Field to name just a few examples. As a member of the Penn community, you're right in the middle of the excitement-and you and your family can enjoy many of these activities for free.
  • Discounts and Special Services: From arts and entertainment to transportation and mortgages, you'll find great deals for University faculty and staff. Not only do Penn arts and cultural centers and museums offer free and discounted admission and memberships to faculty and staff. You can also enjoy substantial savings on other goods and services such as new cars from Ford and General Motors, cellular phone service plans, movie tickets, and admission to theme parks.
  • Flexible Work Hours: Flexible work options offer creative approaches for completing work while promoting balance between work and personal commitments. These approaches involve use of non-traditional work hours, locations, and/or job structures.
  • Penn Home Ownership Services: Penn offers a forgivable loan for eligible employees interested in buying a home or currently residing in West Philadelphia, which can be used for closing costs or home improvements.
  • Adoption Assistance: Penn will reimburse eligible employees on qualified expenses in connection with the legal adoption of an eligible child, such as travel or court fees, for up to two adoptions in your household.

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