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Specialist, Communications, New Worlds Reading Initiative

Company: Lastinger Center
Location: Gainesville
Posted on: November 22, 2021

Job Description:

The Lastinger Center for Learning is an education innovation hub within UF's College of Education focused on creating equitable education systems that improve teaching and learning across early childhood and K-12 education. Specifically, the Center targets kindergarten readiness, 3rd grade reading proficiency, and algebra proficiency as critical milestones in children's educational trajectory that are predictive of success in school and life. The Center works at the nexus of research, practice, and policy to develop sustainable systems that leverage educational technologies and improve the implementation of research-based practices. Housed in one of the nation's elite public research universities, the Center operates as a dynamic, entrepreneurial workplace focused on executing against UF's service mission to strengthen the human condition and improve the quality of life.
New Worlds Reading Initiative
In 2021, the Florida Legislature created the New Worlds Reading Initiative, Florida's first statewide book distribution program, to provide at-home literacy supports for students reading below grade level. Under the initiative, a high-quality, hardcopy book is delivered monthly to eligible students. Their parents are provided resources to help improve their student's reading skills and instill a love of reading. The Department of Education has designated the Lastinger Center as the Administrator for the program, responsible for fulfilling all the requirements of the initiative.

The bill establishes responsibilities for the state-level Administrator to include:
Developing, in conjunction with the Just Read, Florida! Office, a selection of books from a variety of genres and covering a range of topics, appropriate for each grade level;
Facilitating book distribution directly or through an agreement with a book distribution company;
Developing and distributing marketing materials to help school districts and local partners raise awareness of the initiative;
Helping school districts identify potential nonprofit partners by maintaining a list of national, state and local organizations that have experience supporting efforts to distribute books to children
Developing training materials, including video and text resources, to assist families as they engage in reading and improve literacy skills
Periodically distributing to participating families helpful tips and hyperlinks to video modules via text messaging and email.
Under the guidance of the New Worlds Reading Project Manager and/or external vendors, coordinate the development and execution of communications and marketing plans for the New Worlds Reading Initiative with various stakeholders, including but not limited to: families, teachers, school districts, community and business partners
Coordinate communications activities with external vendor(s) and/or Lastinger associates as a part of the overall marketing and communications strategy of the Center.
Develop marketing tool kits for teachers, school districts and community partners to use in promoting the New Worlds Reading Initiative to eligible families
Coordinate public relations and promotional efforts for the New Worlds Reading Initiative through the development and dissemination of press releases, advisories, media alerts, white papers
Manage development and execution of comprehensive social media strategy to engage stakeholders while building the New Worlds Reading and Lastinger brands
Establish and maintain strong relationships with marketing and communications representatives of partner organizations
Create and refine website copy and refinement to ensure brand and messaging cohesion
Update and maintain a suite of marketing materials and collateral for Lastinger products and services overall, individually for each milestone, and that vary for different audiences (customers, clients, policymakers)
Track communications impact using web and social analytics tools to understand success in execution and inform planning
Conduct research around marketing and communications strategy and implementation for similar literacy/book delivery programs
Conduct brand analysis to gain insight into how the New Worlds Reading Initiative is received with focus families and other stakeholders
Create and disseminate messaging through appropriate outlets (email, social media, etc.) to recruit participants for interviews, surveys, and/or focus groups

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The mission of the Lastinger Center for Learning is to create equitable educational systems where every child and educator, regardless of circumstances, experiences high-quality learning every day to support children's achievement of critical milestones that are predictive of success in school and life. In order to achieve this mission, the Lastinger Center is committed to attracting, hiring, and retaining a dynamic and diverse team.
The University of Florida is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The University is committed to non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations, genetic information and veteran status in also aspects of employment including recruitment, hiring, promotion, transfers, discipline, terminations, wage and salary administration, benefits and training.
Bachelor's degree and two years of relevant experience; or an associate's degree and four years of relevant experience.


Gainesville based preferred; Florida based required
Bachelors or higher Degree in Marketing, Public Relations or Communications.
3-5 years of work relevant work experience.
Experience working independently, setting priorities, objectives and coordinating with others to achieve those objectives.
Experience in conducting and analyzing market research through various channels.
Excellent written and oral communication and interpersonal skills.
Ability to work independently, think critically, and maintain big picture while paying attention to details.
Ability to meet deadlines in the face of competing priorities.
Proficiency and the ability to utilize Microsoft Office (Excel, Word, Power Point, Outlook), web analytics software, customer relationship management (CRM) and databases.
Proficiency managing social media platforms for organizations.
In order to be considered, you must upload your cover letter and resume.
This is a time-limited position.
This position is eligible for veteran's preference. If you are claiming veteran's preference, please upload a copy of your DD 214 Member Copy 4 with your application for consideration. See our Veteran's Preference Page -for more specific information.
Application must be submitted by 11:55 p.m. (ET) of the posting end date.

Keywords: Lastinger Center, Gainesville , Specialist, Communications, New Worlds Reading Initiative, Other , Gainesville, Florida

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