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Communications Specialist

Harvard University - Harvard Divinity School

Job Summary:

This is a term position ending no later than December 31, 2023. Please apply via Harvard Careers at

In October, 2020, Harvard Divinity School launched Religion and Public Life (RPL) – an innovative, nondenominational cross-disciplinary program to promote a robust understanding of the rich, complex role that religion plays in all facets of human existence
RPL serves as an umbrella for programs, research and scholarship on the many ways religion interacts with, and influences, institutions such as government, education, journalism and other professions, and more. RPL includes a new degree program, the Masters in Religion and Public Life (MRPL), and related certificate programs; the Religion, Conflict & Peace Initiative; and the Religious Literacy and the Professions Initiative.

Reporting to the RPL Program Director, the RPL Communications Specialist provides strategic and operational leadership in proposing, developing and advancing RPL communications in order to amplify the reach and impact of its mission to advance the public understanding of religion. Working closely with RPL and HDS Communications staff, faculty, fellows and others, the RPL Communications specialist leads on a range of projects related to website content and design, special events planning, publicity and marketing, teaching materials and other collateral. The RPL Communications Specialist also leads on development of an overall communication strategy for the program, including developing content guidelines and best practices, and proposing methods for assessing progress and effectiveness.

Job-Specific Responsibilities:

Website content and design
• Maintain vibrant, dynamic RPL website presence through regular updates and new content
• Design and create new content for all RPL programming and initiatives
• Propose and implement design modifications

Events, Publicity and Marketing
• Co-plan and help implement public engagement for major events, including events, webinars, symposia and professional
education training for teachers and others
• Design and disseminate announcements of events, on-line and in print to both Harvard and non-Harvard audiences
• Delegate special events support duties to Staff Assistant, monitoring travel arrangements, contracts, invoicing and reimbursements, catering, and event setup/cleanup
• Maintain RPL online calendars, which includes RPL’s calendar of events
• Develop and advance integrated social media strategies to increase public exposure and participation
• Develop layout design and assist with content and marketing of newsletters for RPL and its major programs
• Develop content for event posters and publicity that can be easily adapted
• Design and set up interactive blogs
• Develop other marketing materials as needed
• Establish and help maintain data bank of photos

• Create and edit video and conduct interviews with speakers, students, and other participants in RPL events, programs, training and internships
• Develop copy about RPL events, featuring speakers
• Develop copy for other digital and print needs
• Create professional templates for case studies and other classroom resources. Assist with design of materials and other collateral for professional workshops with media executives and others
• Develop educational videos designed to demonstrate the importance of religious literacy for professionals in various fields (journalism, entertainment media, public health, etc.)

Internal Communications
• Coordinate communications internally within RPL through ongoing Communications Working Group
• Coordinate communications for RPL within HDS, and with other Harvard professional schools
• Maintain strong working relationships with HDS Communications Department colleagues and others

Communications Strategy
• Work closely with RPL Leadership Team and HDS Communications in developing overall strategy for expanding RPL’s public reach and profile
• Partner with HDS Communications to ensure maximum integration of RPL communications strategy within wider HDS Communications strategies
• Develop approaches for assessing the effectiveness of RLP communications/engagement strategies

• Negotiate contracts, as needed, with outside vendor for technical and other services
• Manage student interns, temporary employees and others in support of communications functions
• Provide regular reporting on RPL communications

Basic Qualifications:
• 3 years of experience managing communications and website projects.
• Basic knowledge of HTML, Drupal-based and WordPress CMS systems, and other web-based collaboration tools.

PLEASE NOTE: Shortlisted candidates will be required to submit a writing sample.

Additional Qualifications and Skills:
• Bachelor’s degree or an equivalent combination of education, training, and experience.
• Proven expertise in digital platforms and selection of appropriate communications channels.
• Demonstrated knowledge of web technologies and leveraging analytics toward project goals.
• Demonstrated ability to prepare and publish materials and digital media for diverse audiences.
• Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with impeccable attention to detail. High degree of initiative, motivation, and self-direction.
• Ability to work independently and with students, faculty, and project partners.
• Ability to work with team members and clients to define user needs and project objectives.
• Self-motivated and comfortable using editorial judgment to develop multimedia content to public-facing channels.
• Experience working in a scholarly or nonprofit environment preferred.
• Ability to innovate, think strategically and conceptually, and manage multiple projects simultaneously and proactively.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Your cover letter and resume should be combined into a SINGLEDOCUMENT under the resume tab. Cover letters are required for every position at Harvard Divinity School. Please include in your cover letter a short description of your experience creating and fostering an inclusive work environment. We regret that the Harvard Divinity School does not provide Visa sponsorship.

Working Conditions:
Please Note: During the current period of COVID-19 related restrictions, this position will start as a remote position, with transition to onsite in Cambridge when the HDS campus reopens. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility with our interview process. We will be conducting interviews virtually for selected candidates until further notice. Harvard will require COVID vaccination for all Harvard community members who will have any on-campus presence. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement and exceptions may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage:

Additional Information:
***This is term position ending no later than December 31, 2023.***

The Harvard Divinity School (HDS) seeks to respect, understand, and learn from the cultures and beliefs of the members of our diverse community and cultivate an environment in which all members of our community can participate and thrive. We endeavor to accept responsibility for the impact of our actions on our community, our environment, and the world as we advance our shared commitment to education and scholarship. We are dedicated to building a community, and, ultimately, a world, in which people can peacefully live and work together across religious and cultural divides. HDS actively seeks and welcomes people of color, women, the LGBTQIA+ community, persons with disabilities, and people at intersections of these identities, from across the spectrum of disciplines and methods to contribute to our mission to educate students of religion for intellectual leadership, professional service, and ministry.

EEO Statement:
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.

Cambridge, MA 02138
United States