News Media: Help Me Help You

I have always been proud to work with the media and have taken every opportunity to promote the importance of participating in media requests because I believe wholeheartedly in what a free press means to a democratic society. There are also other (less lofty) benefits, both for institutions and for individuals, when we maintain good relationships with reporters. Lately, though, it’s been more challenging to keep up the same level of enthusiasm. Media missteps, inappropriate behavior by journalists, and the infiltration of fake news are … Read more…

How We Are All Just Like Tina Fey (at least when it comes to media relations)

Last week, after finishing a series of very well-written, but heart-wrenchingly depressing novels, I decided I needed a change. Something light. Something funny. I needed a book that would make me laugh, rather than cry. Enter Tina Fey. Bossypants has been out for a while, but I had been so busy sobbing my way through highly acclaimed literature that I hadn’t gotten to it yet. I read it in two nights, in the hopes of escaping both sadness and work (I read enough about PR … Read more…

Where the Trump News Machine Leaves the Rest of Us

Many things have changed profoundly in our country since the 2016 election—including news coverage. The sheer amount of news created by President Trump’s tweets alone is unprecedented. And the pace of news out of Washington is hard for the general public to keep up with, never mind journalists. The president may claim to despise the “fake news,” but he certainly knows how monopolize their attention—perhaps not always to his benefit, but oftentimes to the point of ignoring other important stories. While a news-making president like … Read more…

Keeping Up With News About the News

For those of us in higher ed media relations, there’s a lot of news to keep up with on a daily basis. To do our jobs well we need to stay informed about the latest trends within education and keep up with news of the day in a variety of areas from politics to science, especially as it relates to available faculty expertise. While these things alone are more than enough to keep us busy, it’s also critical to keep up with the news about … Read more…

Week in Review: Heating Things Up

We had our second official heat wave of the year this week in Massachusetts (where Cristal and I live) and I loved every hot, sweaty minute of it. Any week that includes early morning runs to beat the heat, ice cream lunches (yup, all three 90-degree days), and late night reading on the deck as the days cool is heaven in my world. It may have taken a while for the warm weather to arrive this year, but it finally feels like summer in New … Read more…

Quick Hit: Rethinking Your Pitch

I’m not a cover-to-cover reader of Entrepreneur magazine, but do find myself on their site fairly regularly for higher education-related (particularly b-school) stories. This month the Editor’s Note, “Pitching Your Business to a Journalist? Here’s What Works,” also caught my eye. I never pass up an opportunity to hear directly from journalists about what elements of a pitch are most likely to lead to a story. You never know what new tips or strategies you’ll take away or how you might rethink a pitch based … Read more…

So Long Personal Essay! The Op-Ed is King

A few weeks ago, Erin shared this New Yorker column about the demise of the personal essay with our staff. It’s an interesting read that articulates the reasons why, in ways I never stopped to think about, but that I definitely experienced playing out and was particularly attuned to because of our work placing written pieces by faculty members. In fact, in working with new faculty interested in writing op-eds this year (there were a lot, many inspired by the election and aftermath), I found … Read more…

Quick Hit: Happy Mother’s Day

Sunday is Mother’s Day, which got me thinking a few things: 1) Time to introduce my mom to my new favorite treat. And 2) mothers are such amazing people. There are so many moms out there who inspire me. Besides my own mother and the other remarkable women in my life I have been fortunate to learn from, the moms who top the list are those juggling work, kids and college simultaneously—and particularly those doing it without a partner—all to better the lives of their … Read more…

Long To-Do List? Take a Coffee Break

May is a particularly busy time in higher education, so when two of my colleagues suggested squeezing in an unplanned day of media visits this week I panicked. My to-do list flashed before my eyes. My anxiety heightened thinking about my inbox filling up, while I sipped coffee at a meeting. I could think of so many reasons to say no. But, I didn’t. And for that I’m grateful. In a profession based on relationships (as so many are), face time is always worth more … Read more…

Quick Hit: Random Thoughts on Four Years at TVP Comms

Four years ago this week, I signed my offer letter from TVP Communications. I became an official member of the staff about a week after that and have never looked back. It’s hard to sum up four years in a comprehensive way in a “Quick Hit,” but below, I’ve shared a few random observations and memories in no particular order: Slack, a tool we are extremely reliant on as a virtual office, was still months away from its “preview release.” It’s such an integral part … Read more…