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Communications Officer, Advancement

Education, Marketing / Communications


Saint Mary\'s University

Halifax City, Nova Scotia

Position:                      Communications Officer, Advancement (One Year Contract)

Department:               External Affairs

Salary:                         $60,000 - $67,000 + 4% in lieu of vacation


Founded in 1802, Saint Mary’s University is one of Canada’s oldest and leading institutions of higher learning and has evolved into a vibrant and engaged community of students, faculty, staff, and alumni from more than 100 countries around the world.  Saint Mary’s University is home to one of Canada’s leading business schools, a science Faculty widely known for its cutting-edge research, a comprehensive and innovative Arts Faculty and a vibrant Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research.

Under the supervision of the Associate Vice-President, External Affairs, the Communications Officer, Advancement is responsible for the planning, development and execution of communication materials to support the strategy, program and activities of the Alumni and Development units in the Office of Advancement of Saint Mary’s University. The University’s Office of Advancement department, includes: Development, Alumni Engagement, Advancement Services and External Affairs. The Communications Officer, Advancement works closely with the Development team, which includes principal and leadership gifts, annual giving, donor relations, stewardship, and planned giving.

Duties as the Communications Officer, Advancement include, but are not limited to:

  • Writing and editing brochures, feature articles, newsletters, gift proposals, annual reports, direct mail content, web content, and other communications.
  • Developing print materials for annual appeals.
  • Correspondence on behalf of the University President and Vice-Presidents to donors including thank-you letters.
  • Developing ongoing content for Giving web pages, including the development of specialized targeted web pages for events and appeals.
  • Managing and producing annual donor report.
  • Overseeing campaign communications including profiles, solicitation materials, special appeals, and ongoing publicity for special programs
  • Developing supplemental materials such as biographies, backgrounders, and executive talking points, scripts, and presentations.
  • Collaborating with External Affairs to produce materials on time and on budget.
  • Partnering with contractors including photographers, video producers, and graphic designers for visual communications.
  • Coordinating with major and principal gift officers to develop and implement content strategies for reaching donors and volunteers.
  • Interviewing donors, faculty, and students for writing assignments, as well as other alumni, parents, and friends of the university as needed.
  • Ensuring all communications produced adhere to university brand and style guidelines
  • Responsible for coordinating the Development’s team social media efforts with the Office of Alumni Engagement and External Affairs.
  • Representing the Development team on the University’s Communications Group.

To be the successful Communications Officer, Advancement you will possess a Bachelor’s degree in English, Journalism, Public Relations, Communications, or a related field required combined with a minimum of three (3) to five (5) years of experience writing professional fundraising communications or other relevant work experience required. A Master’s degree and experience in a higher education or other non-profit settings will be considered an asset. Your experience will include developing content and communications for donors; writing for multiple platforms, including print, email, web, and social media; and demonstrated understanding of higher education advancement campaigns and fundraising communications strategies. You possess excellent interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills with an aptitude for collaborating with others; meticulous attention to detail including proofreading and excellent grammar; and working knowledge of editorial style standards (AP Style and University Style) and copywriting techniques. Your ability to balance multiple deadlines in a fast-paced work environment and demonstrated proficiency with Microsoft Office, particularly Word, Outlook, and PowerPoint will ensure your success in this position.

Apply for this opportunity online by visiting www.smu.ca/employment and use our online application system through CareerBeacon. Select the position you are interested in and apply by clicking the "Apply Online Now" button. Please include the names of three professional references. No telephone calls please.

The search committee will begin to consider applications on October 17, 2017 and continue until the position is filled.

Saint Mary’s University hires on the basis of merit and is committed to the principles of employment equity.  Saint Mary’s University encourages applications from qualified women, visible minorities, Aboriginal people, and people with disabilities. Preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada.

Saint Mary's University thanks all applicants for applying. Only those selected for interviews will be contacted.

Saint Mary’s University promotes a scent free environment and is proud to be tobacco-free as of September 1, 2013


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