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Become An Assistant Director, Communications

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Working As An Assistant Director, Communications

  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Stressful

  • $51,158

    Average Salary

What Does An Assistant Director, Communications Do

Public relations specialists create and maintain a favorable public image for the organization they represent. They design media releases to shape public perception of their organization and to increase awareness of its work and goals. 

Duties

Public relations specialists typically do the following:

  • Write press releases and prepare information for the media
  • Respond to information requests from the media
  • Help clients communicate effectively with the public
  • Help maintain their organization's corporate image and identity
  • Draft speeches and arrange interviews for an organization’s top executives
  • Evaluate advertising and promotion programs to determine whether they are compatible with their organization’s public relations efforts
  • Evaluate public opinion of clients through social media

Public relations specialists, also called communications specialists and media specialists, handle an organization’s communication with the public, including consumers, investors, reporters, and other media specialists. In government, public relations specialists may be called press secretaries. In this setting, workers keep the public informed about the activities of government officials and agencies.

Public relations specialists draft press releases and contact people in the media who might print or broadcast their material. Many radio or television special reports, newspaper stories, and magazine articles start at the desks of public relations specialists. For example, a press release might describe a public issue, such as health, energy, or the environment, and what an organization does concerning that issue.

Press releases are increasingly being sent through the Internet and social media, in addition to publication through traditional media outlets. Public relations specialists are often in charge of monitoring and responding to social media questions and concerns.

Public relations specialists are different from advertisers in that they get their stories covered by media instead of purchasing ad space in publications and on television.

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How To Become An Assistant Director, Communications

Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree. Employers prefer candidates who have studied public relations, journalism, communications, English, or business.

Education

Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree in public relations, journalism, communications, English, or business. Through such programs, students produce a portfolio of work that demonstrates their ability to prospective employers.

Training

Entry-level workers typically begin by maintaining files of material about an organization’s activities, skimming and retaining relevant media articles, and assembling information for speeches and pamphlets. After gaining experience, public relations specialists begin to write news releases, speeches, articles for publication, or carry out public relations programs.

Other Experience

Internships at public relations firms or in the public relations departments of other businesses can be helpful in getting a job as a public relations specialist.

Some employers prefer candidates that have experience communicating with others through a school newspaper or a leadership position in school or in their community.

Important Qualities

Interpersonal skills. Public relations specialists deal with the public and the media regularly; therefore, they must be open and friendly to maintain a favorable image for their organization.

Organizational skills. Public relations specialists are often in charge of managing several events at the same time, requiring superior organizational skills.

Problem-solving skills. Public relations specialists sometimes must explain how a company or client is handling sensitive issues. They must use good judgment in what they report and how they report it.

Speaking skills. Public relations specialists regularly speak on behalf of their organization. When doing so, they must be able to clearly explain the organization’s position.

Writing skills. Public relations specialists must be able to write well-organized and clear press releases and speeches. They must be able to grasp the key messages they want to get across and write them in a short, succinct way to get the attention of busy readers or listeners.

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Assistant Director, Communications Jobs

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Assistant Director, Communications Demographics

Gender

Female

65.1%

Male

33.3%

Unknown

1.6%
Ethnicity

White

62.3%

Hispanic or Latino

15.7%

Black or African American

12.6%

Asian

6.0%

Unknown

3.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

56.4%

French

12.8%

German

3.8%

Japanese

3.8%

Portuguese

2.6%

Hebrew

2.6%

Russian

2.6%

Arabic

2.6%

Italian

2.6%

Turkish

1.3%

Samoan

1.3%

Vietnamese

1.3%

Greek

1.3%

Braille

1.3%

Mandarin

1.3%

Ukrainian

1.3%

Thai

1.3%
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Assistant Director, Communications Education

Schools

Michigan State University

10.2%

New York University

8.4%

University of Alabama

7.2%

University of Phoenix

7.2%

Florida State University

6.0%

Arizona State University

4.8%

University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

4.8%

Temple University

4.2%

Sam Houston State University

4.2%

American University

4.2%

University of Illinois at Chicago

4.2%

Johns Hopkins University

4.2%

University of Arizona

4.2%

Ball State University

4.2%

Syracuse University

3.6%

George Washington University

3.6%

Northwestern University

3.6%

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

3.6%

University of Washington

3.6%

University of Massachusetts Amherst

3.6%
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Majors

Business

17.9%

Communication

16.3%

Journalism

8.7%

Marketing

7.0%

English

6.6%

Kinesiology

4.7%

Management

4.4%

Political Science

4.1%

Public Relations

3.5%

Education

3.2%

Psychology

3.2%

Educational Leadership

2.8%

Criminal Justice

2.8%

Social Work

2.6%

Elementary Education

2.2%

Writing

2.2%

Sociology

2.2%

Public Administration

2.0%

Liberal Arts

1.9%

Law

1.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

39.7%

Masters

33.2%

Other

14.4%

Associate

5.0%

Certificate

3.7%

Doctorate

3.0%

Diploma

0.7%

License

0.2%
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Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Assistant Director, Communications Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Assistant Director, Alumni Integrated Communications University of San Francisco San Francisco, CA Jan 12, 2015 $70,000
Assistant Head Tennis Pro and Director of Communic Apex Tennis Club Fayetteville, AR Jul 24, 2014 $66,784
Assistant Head Tennis Pro and Director of Communic Apex Tennis Club Fayetteville, AR Jun 10, 2013 $66,784
Assistant Head Tennis PRO, Director of Communicati Apex Tennis Club Fayetteville, AR Jun 10, 2013 $66,784
Assistant Communications Director Central California Conference of Seventh-Day Adven Clovis, CA Oct 17, 2011 $52,982
Assistant Director of Education & Communications American Purlinton University Pomona, CA Dec 01, 2009 $50,526

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Top Skills for An Assistant Director, Communications

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  1. Web
  2. Press Releases
  3. Assistant Community Director
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Created professional promotional materials and proofread and edited the clinic's website during an internship
  • Supervised staff and managed communications including press releases and company correspondence.
  • Started as a floating leasing consultant for three communities and was promoted to Assistant Community Director within three months of employment.
  • Engineered a statewide network of local Facebook groups that enabled the campaign to easily communicate with supporters across the state.
  • Coordinated annual spring alumni homecoming event; created direct mail piece for continuing education postcards sent to potential homecoming participants.

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Top 10 Best States for Assistant Directors, Communications

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Virginia
  3. Alaska
  4. Connecticut
  5. Washington
  6. New Jersey
  7. New York
  8. Massachusetts
  9. North Carolina
  10. Rhode Island
  • (168 jobs)
  • (278 jobs)
  • (22 jobs)
  • (118 jobs)
  • (177 jobs)
  • (154 jobs)
  • (629 jobs)
  • (430 jobs)
  • (273 jobs)
  • (22 jobs)

Top Assistant Director, Communications Employers

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