Engaging with the Media. Moving the university forward.
The Office of Marketing & Communications works to enhance the reputation, visibility
and understanding of the university by collaborating with campus units to publicize news and major events to local, regional and national news outlets. We also
administer a student hometown news program, Hometown UD.
From a news and information perspective our office is responsible for:
- Creating and distributing press releases, tip sheets, and media advisories.
- Assisting journalists looking for faculty voices, and promoting our experts.
- Facilitating media coverage of Cornell, including media visits to campus.
- Providing media training and assistance when engaging with the media.
- Facilitating media interviews through our audio and video broadcast studios.
Effective and positive communication with the media can play a significant role in
our ability to carry out the university's mission. By maintaining mutually beneficial
relationships with editors, reporters, writers and other members of the media, the
university will bolster efforts to increase the community's awareness of our programs,
achievements and events. Previously established media relationships also can make
a significant difference during times of crises.
In most cases, the president's senior staff, as well as the director of marketing
and communications, serve as official university spokespeople and convey our official
institutional position on issues of general campus-wide impact or significance of
situations that are of a particularly controversial or sensitive nature.
Ideally, media inquiries should initially be referred to Julie Abell, Director of
Annual Giving and Alumni Relations at 972-265-5743 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Depending on the circumstance, the president or the manager may designate another
college administrator to serve as spokesperson on a particular issue.
In cases of critical significance to the university, the director of marketing and
communications will work with other college/school officials to develop a written
statement outlining the known facts of the situation and summarize the college/school's
In the event of a crisis or emergency situation, the director of marketing and communications
will handle all contacts with the media, and will coordinate the information flow
from the university to the media and general public. In such situations, all campus
departments should refer media calls to the Marketing & Communication Department in
the Office of Advancement.
When to respond? When to refer?
Faculty and staff are free to respond to media requests regarding your research, scholarship,
teaching or professional expertise. The director of marketing and communications,
however, should be notified as soon as possible to inform him of the contact. Such
notification can be particularly important if follow-up inquiries are made with other
personnel to ensure a coordinated, consistent response.
Media inquiries should be referred to the director of marketing and communications
if they involve issues of university-wide significance and/or are of a controversial
or sensitive nature.
Similarly, the Marketing & Communications Department should be notified about negative
occurrences that are likely to make news.