At no time in recent history has the need for clear and consistent communication in the domain of public health been so important. The pandemic has underscored a crucial opportunity – and, indeed, a responsibility – for all of us at the Harvard T.H. Chan School to promote and model effective public health communication.
To this end, we have been investigating ways in which we might coordinate, innovate and expand the School’s various public health communication efforts and audiences – our Public Health Magazine, our Studio programs (The Forum, Voices in Leadership), our Dean’s special programs, our new podcast initiative, and our relationship with the Harvard Global Health Institute – in a more integrative, collaborative, and synergistic manner. Our goal is, on the one hand, to leverage our hard work to produce communications and programming of outstanding quality coordinated across our many platforms and, on the other, to expand our outreach to students, alumni, sponsors and funders, the broader news media, our dedicated program followers, and, increasingly and importantly, the interested general public. We are envisioning a multi-faceted communications enterprise that will define and model outstanding leadership in public health communications.
An essential element of our plan is the hiring of a new vice dean for strategic communications who is capable of leading an engaged, entrepreneurial team to create this enterprise. We are looking for someone who is collaborative and facilitative by nature, who can work across platforms, departments and schools with ease, and who understands success as the ability to make the whole of public health communications at the School greater than the sum of its component parts. We are also seeking an individual with extensive experience in corporate or institutional level communications, both inward and especially outward-facing – i.e., a leader whose natural inclination is to accomplish big undertakings through creating robust collaborations with appropriate external partners.
The vice dean will work with the Dean and other Chan School leaders to put together a strategic communications plan for the School. This plan will drive the creation of an innovative, multi-platform enterprise, one in which some of the most pressing public health needs are explored, dramatic advances in public health research showcased, and information shared in ways that promote the overall health and well-being of the individual and the planet. We are looking to this individual to create a topnotch communications partnership across the School and University, as well as with other media platform outlets (e.g., NPR, CNN) that elevates the visibility of our science through various media channels, news stories, and webinars/seminars/podcasts focused on what people are hungry to hear and learn.
The vice dean will also work closely with the Dean and senior faculty and staff leadership to refine and communicate the School’s brand, highlight the research and expertise of Chan School faculty, researchers and students to public audiences, and ensure the appropriate placement of Chan School communications in communications/media forums and vehicles. Internally to the School, the vice dean for strategic communications will be more facilitative than authoritative, and a leader and influencer who provides guidance, direction, and encouragement to individuals who know how to do their jobs very well - a leader among equals. From an external perspective, the vice dean will be a strong partner to industry, NGOs, governments, and others, showcasing and leveraging the School’s talents and resources.
A successful applicant will have corporate or institutional experience, and have experience playing a similar role in creating, shaping and leading an entity-wide communications strategy while managing, aligning and coordinating a range of communications platforms/outlets in a complex setting.
Additional duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Coordinate, innovate and expand the School’s various public health communication efforts and audiences in a more integrative, collaborative, and synergistic manner.
- Work with the Dean and other leaders to develop a strategic communications plan for the School.
- Create a topnotch communications partnership across the School and University, as well as with other media platform outlets that elevates the visibility of our science through various media channels.
- Work closely with the Dean and senior faculty and staff leadership to:
- Refine and communicate the School’s brand
- Highlight the research and expertise of HCSPH Chan School faculty, researchers and students to public audiences
- Ensure the appropriate placement of Chan School communications in various media forums and vehicles.
- Leverage current communications resources and programming across our many platforms.
- Expand outreach to students, alumni, sponsors and funders, the broader news media, current program followers, and the general public.
- Envision and build a multi-faceted communications enterprise that will define and model outstanding leadership in public health communications.
- Recruit and build entrepreneurial team to create communications enterprise.
- Work across platforms, departments and schools with ease.
- Work as a strong partner to industry, NGOs, governments, and others, showcasing and leveraging the School’s talents and resources.
- Other duties and projects as required.
PLEASE NOTE: Shortlisted candidates will be required to provide writing samples and/or a communications portfolio.
PLEASE NOTE: The primary work location for this position is Boston, Massachusetts. Until our return to campus, which is still to-be-determined, this interview process and position will be conducted virtually – including virtual interviews, remote onboarding, and remote work. The remote nature of this position is only temporary. Local, on-campus work will be required as a condition of continued employment once the School and this role return to an operational status that supports it.
- Bachelor's degree or equivalent experience required
- 10+ years of related experience, including in corporate or institutional level communications both inward and especially outward-facing, required
- Prior supervisory experience required
Additional Qualifications and Skills
- Master's degree preferred
- Experience creating, shaping and leading an entity-wide communications strategy and managing, aligning and coordinating a range of communications platforms/outlets in a complex setting preferred
- Experience collaborating across various internal and external stakeholder groups preferred
- Facilitative by nature preferred
- Leader and influencer who provides guidance, direction, and encouragement to well-qualified and established individuals preferred
At the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, we believe that diversity is integral to the Harvard experience and our mission of improving public health education, research and policy. Diversity of cultural backgrounds, identities, lived experiences, perspectives, and ways of understanding the world enriches our community and enables us to best meet the public health needs of the United States and the world. Ongoing learning and development related to diversity allows for both individual and institutional growth, and is necessary to foster and sustain a culture of inclusion. To achieve this, we are committed to ensuring equitable access to opportunities for learning, living, and working at the Harvard Chan School. We maintain an unwavering dedication to diversity, inclusion, and belonging as core to our institutional values and to actively counter, minimize, and address racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, gender bias, and all forms of discrimination.
Learn more about the School’s mission, objectives, and core values and our diversity, inclusion, and belonging initiatives. -
Harvard University offers an outstanding benefits package including:
- Time Off: 3-4 weeks paid vacation, paid holiday break, 12 paid sick days, 12+ paid holidays, and 3 paid personal days per year.
- Medical/Dental/Vision: Excellent and affordable medical, dental & vision plans, with coverage beginning as of an employee's start date.
- Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with full vesting after 3 years of service.
- Tuition Assistance & Reimbursement Programs: $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School, discounted options through participating Harvard graduate schools, and reimbursement options for accredited schools outside of Harvard.
- Transportation: 50% discount on MBTA passes, as well as additional options (rideshare, biking, etc.) to assist employees in their daily commute.
- Wellness & Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including stress management, hard & soft skills development, career planning, massages, nutrition, meditation, and complimentary health services. Additionally, access to Harvard athletic facilities, libraries, campus events - and many discounts for various cultural and leisure activities throughout metro Boston.
Join the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health to support our mission of health research and education, and to be a part of the oldest institution of higher learning in the country!
- The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health does not provide visa sponsorship, now or in the future, for staff positions.
- Harvard University requires pre-employment reference checks and background screenings.
- This position has a 180 day orientation and review period.
USA - MA - Boston
CM0262 Communications Management Dir
Office of Communications
00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.