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Development Communications Manager - Engineering

University of Massachusetts Amherst
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Aug 9, 2022

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Position Type
Fundraising, Corporate and Foundation Relations, Donor Relations, Fundraising Administration, Programs, Community Outreach, Administrative, Public Relations and Communications
Community Development, Community Foundations, Education, Other Fields, Research
Employment Type
Full Time
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Development Communications Manager - Engineering
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Amherst, MA

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

The Development Communications Manager in the College of Engineering (COE) will play a key role in building and implementing a comprehensive alumni and donor communications and marketing strategy – with consistent messaging that reflects the College’s strategic and fundraising priorities, and the goal of boosting institutional pride and increasing engagement and philanthropic support.

Reporting to both the Assistant Dean for Development and the Director of Communications, this newly established position will work cross-functionally on the creation of high-quality, donor-centered materials as well as web and social content that highlights the impact of philanthropy and furthers outreach, solicitation, and stewardship efforts.

The successful candidate will also oversee the College of Engineering’s fundraising/promotional collateral as a part of the university’s upcoming, and most ambitious, capital campaign.


Essential Functions

  • Write and edit major funding proposals and cases for support with clear, structured, and compelling language. Oversee the design and execution of personalized campaign solicitation materials and one-pagers.
  • Craft solicitations as a part of UMassGives, MinuteFund, and other annual pitches and appeals.
  • Closely collaborate with development colleagues to craft personalized correspondence, primarily in the form of comprehensive donor stewardship/impact reports and gift acknowledgements. Other donor centered communications may include drafting invitations, congratulatory greetings, condolence letters, and other special fundraising communications.
  • Devise talking points for leadership at development events and board meetings.
  • Develop stories to illustrate donor impact and announce gifts with the dual objective of celebrating gifts and inspiring other donations. Interview stakeholders and donors; write and edit compelling stories.
  • Work collaboratively with a team of writers and designer(s) to produce fundraising and campaign-related promotional materials
  • Participate in the creation of multimedia assets that support the content mentioned above. Increase engagement through communication strategies that include broadcast email, social media, and web.
  • Track and identify alumni/donors for potential news and feature stories. Contribute to, and maintain, a user-friendly library of content and messaging that conveys the impact of philanthropy and is available for the use of communications and development colleagues.


Other Functions

  • Perform related duties as assigned or required to meet department, college, or university goals and objectives.
  • Understand and contribute to implementation of departmental and institutional goals for achieving non-discrimination and creating a respectful, inclusive environment that is supportive of diversity.


Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor’s degree. 
  • One to three (1-3) years of relevant work experience.
  • Outstanding written and verbal communication skills; ability to effectively communicate with diverse constituencies across multiple communications channels.
  • Demonstrated excellent writing and editing skills for both short- and long-lead turnarounds. 
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate with stakeholders and communicate key messages in alignment with overarching communications strategy.  
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously and to set and meet deadlines while maintaining exacting standards of accuracy and quality. 
  • Ability to problem solve and deal diplomatically with challenging issues and situations. 
  • Advanced computer usage skills, including Microsoft suite of software, Google documents. 
  • A commitment to strong customer service. 


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Degree concentration in Journalism, English, Communications, Marketing, Creative Writing, or related field. 
  • Experience writing development centric communications preferably within an institution of higher education.
  • Copy editing experience.


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

  • Typical office environment. 


Additional Information

As the #1 public college of engineering in New England and a top 30 public engineering program nationally, the College of Engineering at UMass Amherst strives for excellence in education, research, and innovation as it pursues its goal of joining the top 25. The college’s 150+ faculty members work across five academic departments and are dedicated to research, with R&D reaching over $47 million, and effective teaching and mentoring of the college’s 2,300+ undergraduate and 600+ graduate students. From world class research opportunities at the lab bench and in the field, to a breadth of academic and experiential offerings including hands-on design projects, innovation competitions, and co-op opportunities, the College of Engineering prepares students to lead, innovate and succeed.


Work Schedule

  • Monday – Friday, 37.5 hours/week, with occasional evenings and weekends required.
  • Some travel required.
  • This position has the opportunity for a hybrid work schedule, which is defined by the University as an arrangement where an employee’s work is regularly performed at a location other than the campus workspace for a portion of the week. As this position falls within the Professional Staff Union, it is subject to the terms and conditions of the Professional Staff Union collective bargaining agreement.


Salary Information

Level 25

PSU Salary Ranges


Special Instructions to Applicants

Along with your application, please include a resume, cover letter, and contact information for three (3) professional references. Position will remain open until filled.


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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