Share this Job

Public Relations Specialist (5426)

Date: Nov 23, 2021

Location: Washington, DC, US, 20016

Company: American University


The Public Relations Specialist will support American University’s external communications and reputation efforts through a broad portfolio of communications, media relations, and administrative duties. Primary responsibilities include tracking and measuring the university’s news coverage, developing and distribute weekly news compilation summaries and reports, fielding incoming requests from the press, updating the media relations website, providing support for media events and media visits on campus, assisting with pitches and media advisories, and supporting the implementation of the AU Media social media strategy, among other tasks. In addition, the incumbent will handle a variety of administrative tasks to support the overall operating function of the media team.

Essential Functions

  1. Public Relations and External Communications: Assists the media relations staff by fielding incoming media requests, including ascertaining reporters’ story angles, questions for AU/AU experts, topics, date, time, place, deadline, etc., and works with appropriate media team members to coordinate responses. Releases information regarding AU events and provides logistical support as needed for events on campus when the media attends and provide support in escorting media on campus. Work with other team members to maintain and update editorial calendar
  2. News Monitoring, Measurement & Reporting: On a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis, monitors, compiles and analyzes incoming news clips about American University from external media outlets.  Compiles and categorizes daily news coverage, into one master project database utilizing Cision software, TVEyes software, Lexis-Nexis, Google News, and other search tools to identify and collect news mentions about the university. Monitors and follows general news happening at the university, higher education, and in the U.S. and around the world. Writes, compiles, formats, edits and distributes news compilation summaries, analytics and measurement reports as needed. Develops and updates monthly and academic year media goals analysis reports.
  3. Social Media and Website: Update media relations website on a regular basis using the university content management system. Occasionally write web content. Contributes to the development and execution of a social media strategy for the media relations team.
  4. Office Management: Handles a variety of administrative tasks to support the media relations team.  Maintains and updates general office procedural guides, including but not limited to emergency procedures, media lists, and various office protocols; orders and maintains all newspaper, magazine and online subscriptions, and maintains an organized newspaper/periodical reading area; assists with hiring and management of student workers.  

Position Type/Expected Hours of Work

  • Full time 
  • Specialist A
  • Non Exempt 

Salary Range

  • Commensurate with experience

Required Education and Experience

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent
  • 1-3 years of relevant experience

Preferred Education and Experience

  • Bachelor's degree

  • 3-5 years of relevant experience

Additional Eligibility Qualifications

  • Desired candidate has strong interpersonal, written and verbal communication skills; is flexible and comfortable in a fast-paced, newsroom-style office atmosphere; multi-tasks and meets deadlines while paying close attention to detail. Must be curious, pro-active and have a can-do attitude. Demonstrated experience in Microsoft Office suite, Adobe Photoshop is a must. Knowledge of news gathering software (i.e.: Lexis-Nexis,   Cision) and research gathering tactics a plus. Working knowledge of news & media industry, public affairs and familiarity with higher education desired.
  • Hiring offers for this position are contingent on successful completion of a background check.
  • To ensure the health and safety of our community AU requires COVID-19 vaccinations for faculty and staff. Click here to learn more about our health and safety directive.


  • Click here to learn about American University's unique benefit options.


  • Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities and activities may change at any time with or without notice. This position requires someone who can be flexible with their schedule on short-notice based on breaking news and other departmental needs. Requires clear understanding of what information can be released to the public or press and the ability to respond to sensitive situations with tact and in a timely manner. Requires learning faculty’s areas of expertise, how the university operates and how the university is organized.  Ability to work flexible hours and occasional overtime. 


Current American University Employees:

If you are a current full-time or part-time staff member at American University, please log into AsuccessfulU through the myAU portal. Once in AsuccessfulU, please select the Careers tile which will take you to our internal career page. 


Contact Us:

For more information or assistance with the American University careers site, email


American University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution that operates in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The university does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including pregnancy), age, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, personal appearance, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, source of income, veteran status, an individual’s genetic information or any other bases under federal or local laws (collectively "Protected Bases") in its programs and activities.

Nearest Major Market: Washington DC