Appalachian State University: Public Communication Specialist

Posted By: Emma Faulkner Career Center,

Work experience or education that is NOT included on the application will NOT be considered when screening your application. Please include ALL work experience and education on the application to ensure that you receive the appropriate credit toward qualification for this position.

Position Summary Information

Classification Title Public Communications Specialist
Working Title Public Communication Specialist
Location Boone, NC
Job Category 5
Position Number 093421
Department New River Light and Power Co - 170600
Description of University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls more than 20,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.
Minimum Qualifications
Bachelor’s degree in a discipline related to the area of assignment; or equivalent combination of training and experience. 
All degrees must be received from appropriately accredited institutions. 
Special Note: This is a generalized representation of positions in this class and is not intended to reflect essential functions per ADA. Examples of competencies are typical of the majority of positions, but may not be applicable to all positions.
License/Certification Required
Essential Job Functions
The Public Communication Specialist is the primary spokesperson to the public including all forms of social media, website, radio, newspaper, newsletter, and NRLP signage. 

Duties may include:
    • Develop annual public calendars. 
    • Design promotional materials for special events and programs. 
    • Writes and assists others in preparing a variety of materials for dissemination of information to the public such as memos, newsletters, reports, brochures, fliers, etc. 
    • Prepares or acquires graphics materials as needed
    • Takes photographs for use in communications
    • Writes and distributes press releases and newspaper articles
    • tracks information such as various meeting schedules for communication to appropriate persons
    • Performs research
    • Gathers, and compiles a broad variety of information for publication or other purposes.
    • Gathers information from departments on issues of interest and composes materials using a variety of publishing and related software to produce newsletters for Utility-wide distribution or for the website
    • Coordinates printing and distribution of materials.
    • Creates a social media presence through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
    • Maintains on-going relationships with press and representatives of other local governments
    • Answers media inquiries about NRLP business and activities
    • Researches and interviews staff to obtain answers and information to inquiries.

The employee in this position will be responsible for coordinating communication with the public, as well as coordinating with Appalachian State University faculty and students with research projects and internships. 
Employee must maintain a professional and effective relationship with co-workers, the business community, residents and visitors to Boone, Appalachian State University, and NRLP’s service area. Work is performed under the supervision of the General Manager of NRLP.
Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities Required for this Position
  • Candidate should have considerable knowledge and experience in social media and public communications. 
  • The employee must be energetic, imaginative, well organized and capable of functioning effectively in an independent situation.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills are essential. Employee should have general knowledge in public relations, website design and maintenance, communications, budgeting, project management and marketing. 
  • Considerable knowledge of grammar, punctuation, proofreading, editing and layout. 
  • Working knowledge of the NRLP organization, activities, and functions.
  • Considerable knowledge of office and desktop publishing software applications, website maintenance, and various media such as photographic and video equipment, and photography, graphics, design, and printing.
  • Ability to coordinate and disseminate information regarding programs and services to media, staff and the community in an accurate and timely manner that increases understanding of NRLP’s programs and activities.
  • Ability to gather, analyze, interpret, and report research findings.
  • Ability to work independently and to exercise sound judgment in making decisions related to the release and communication of public information.
  • Ability to communicate effectively in conversations, public presentations and written form, including news releases, newsletters, brochures, electronic medium, and other materials.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with members of the press, elected and appointed officials, University officials, department heads, employees, and the general public.
  • Ability to maintain the confidentiality of information obtained during work operations.
  • Ability to communicate with and develop programs with the Town of Boone, Watauga County, and State organizations.
  • Ability to communicate as a liaison to Appalachian State University’s faculty, staff, students and community.
Preferred Qualifications
The successful candidate will have graduated from an accredited four-year university with a degree in business administration, marketing, public administration, economics or some other applicable degree; a masters degree in business administration or public administration is a plus. 
Prefer a minimum of 3 years experience in marketing or similar field, experience with event planning and facility maintenance a plus.
Type of Position Permanent Full-Time
Staff/Non-Faculty Staff/Non-Faculty
Appointment Type 1.0
Work Schedule/Hours
Mon-Fri, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Number of Hours Per Week 40
Number of Months Per Year 12
Mandatory Staff Yes
Physical Demands of Position
This position may require sitting for long periods of time.
Overall Competency Level Journey
Salary Grade Equivalency GN10
Salary Range
Anticipated Hiring Range $36,225-$51,219
Required Functional Competencies to Successfully Perform Job Duties.
Communication-Verbal: Independently communicates program information of moderate complexity and impact to targeted audiences; assimilates and communicates information that requires greater understanding and has greater impact on the organization. Establishes and maintains a variety of working relationships.

Communication-Written: Independently assimilates and composes written materials to use in a variety of communication outlets; edits documents to ensure accuracy in content and form; drafts communications for final release.

Knowledge-Program: Applies thorough knowledge of the methods and techniques of planning, writing and editing and producing content. Edits and analyzes informational material or content prepared by others. Applies thorough knowledge of the techniques for disseminating information to the public and target groups.

Knowledge-Technical: Understands and uses communication, design and visual art concepts and practices pertinent to the area of responsibility. Determines, utilizes, and applies standard and specialized techniques and technology appropriately. Uses a variety of moderately complex processes, procedures and techniques. Uses and incorporates various hardware and software packages, as well as traditional design methods. Researches and identifies new technology and makes recommendations for use and purchase. Applies knowledge of organizational principles of design elements. Promotes subject matter in a wide variety of media. Trains others in use of new methods and technical tools.

Project Management: Consults with and determines client/customer needs and project parameters. Plans and manages multi-faceted and specialized projects. Conceptualizes and creates communications as they relate to the area of responsibility from creation through delivery.
Pay will be commensurate with applicant competencies, budget, equity and market considerations.

Posting Details Information

Posting Date 08/29/2022
Closing Date 09/12/2022
Competency Level Statement If no applicants apply who meet the required competencies, then management may consider other applicants at a lower competency level.
Special Instructions to Applicants
Required documents to attach: Cover Letter and Resume.

List a minimum of 3 professional references in the application.
Search Chair Name Ed Miller
Search Chair Email
Disability Accommodation Information
Individuals with disabilities may request accommodations in the application process by contacting Maranda Maxey, Director & ADA/504 Coordinator, at 828-262-3056 or
Applicant Pool Preference External (Post on the Web)
Departmental Information

AA/EEO Statement
Appalachian State University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. The University does not discriminate in access to its educational programs and activities, or with respect to hiring or the terms and conditions of employment, on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity and expression, political affiliation, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information or sexual orientation.

Important Contacts:

Director of Human Resources/EEO Officer
Office of Human Resources
330 University Hall Dr.
Boone, NC 28608
(828) 262-3187

Office of Title IX Compliance
123 I.G. Greer Hall
Boone, NC 28608
(828) 262-2144

ADA/504 Coordinator & Office of Disability Resources Director
Office of Disability Resources
224 Joyce Lawrence Lane/Suite 112 Anne Belk Hall
Boone, NC 28608
(828) 262-3056
Diversity and Inclusion at Appalachian
We at Appalachian State University are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence both locally and globally.

We understand that the successful implementation of diversity, equity, and inclusive excellence is the responsibility of the entire university community, including alumni and official university governing bodies. A diverse campus community supports an influx of broad and distinct ideas that increase learning opportunities and strengthen the impact of our community as we work collectively to achieve a just experience for all.

We actively encourage, support, and promote a global mindset and an equitable environment where all will know that they belong and are safe to express their culture, identity, values, ideas, opinions, and creativity. We are committed to creating a culture of equity opportunity for all, one that has an expectation of fairness, justice, and equity-minded practice at all levels of the university community.
Background Check Statement
Any offer of employment to a successful candidate will be conditioned upon the University’s receipt of a satisfactory criminal background report.
Eligibility for Employment
Proper documentation of identity and eligibility for employment will be required before the hiring process can be completed.
Quick Link
Posting Number 201502013P

Supplemental Questions

Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).

    Applicant Documents

    Required Documents
    1. Resume
    2. Cover Letter / Letter of Interest

    Learn More