The Director of Strategic Communications (DSC) is responsible for creating, maintaining, and communicating consistent messages about the School’s mission, core values, strategic goals, and long-term vision. The Director will work closely with the Head of School and the Assistant Head for External Affairs, and will be responsible for developing key marketing initiatives and managing all matters related to communications. The DSC will also work closely with the School’s senior administrative staff, faculty, alumni, parents and Trustees.
The Director will oversee targeted communications, brand management, and the execution of special campaigns related to admission, fundraising, alumni relations, public relations and communication to internal constituencies (parents, students, faculty, etc.). The program aims to position the School competitively in the marketplace through coordinated brand management, increased visibility and awareness, and enhancements in image and reputation.
The ideal candidate is a thoughtful, articulate and experienced communications professional who can both lead staff effectively and serve as a superb ambassador for the School. The ability to orchestrate and run an academic year communications cycle with coordinated events, publications, and outreach efforts is essential to the mission of the office. In addition, at Indian Springs a cultural fit is of equal importance to a candidate’s ability to perform the tasks associated with this role. To that end, Springs seeks candidates who are self-starters, problem solvers, leaders and effective communicators who also embody the School’s core values.
Duties and Responsibilities
Among other duties and responsibilities, the Director of Strategic Communications will:
Create and deliver the School’s message by engaging and activating our community across multiple communications platforms, and bring the Indian Springs School story to life for the purposes of advancement, admissions and enrollment management.
Manage and oversee content, design, production, and distribution of print and digital pieces related to advancement (i.e. annual giving, capital campaigns, major gift appeals, alumni relations) admission, parents association, etc.
Create and oversee capital campaign strategies to support fundraising goals and advancement/parents association/admissions events when needed. Ensure message is consistent throughout all media communications about school life
Create and execute an annual operational plan with goals, strategies, tactics, and key performance indicators. Identify opportunities to increase brand awareness and engagement for Springs’ work with relevant task forces and trustee-generated initiatives. Support the Head of School in her communications.
Develop relationships with faculty, staff, students, consultants, and internal community to be sure that they understand Indian Springs’ marketing and strategic communications initiatives, and that all communications are of good quality and consistent with our broader messages.
Attend meetings of the Advancement Committee of the Board of Directors, and provide relevant data and updates for the committee’s work.
Articulate and exemplify the School’s philosophy to the members of its various constituencies.
Work closely with the Head of School and Assistant Head for External Affairs to develop goals and strategies for the School’s communications program.
Collaborate with the Director of Summer Programs to develop and implement communications around summer programming that will support the recruitment efforts of the School.
Communicate and collaborate regularly with the Assistant Head for External Affairs and Director of Finance and Operations to promote message and mission consistency.
Adhere to the highest ethical standards, reflect an optimistic and positive attitude, demonstrate perseverance and stay focused on securing support for a set of campus-wide priorities.
Maintain a high degree of confidentiality and adhere to the policies and procedures for professional communications.
Be able to conduct weekend and evening work.
Coordinate with school colleagues in the following areas:
Print and digital publications relating to all advancement, admission and parent communication, including regular parent e-newsletters
Update (annually and as needed) the website pages for all aspects of Indian Springs life, working with relevant stakeholders
Work with the advancement office on profiles and stories for Indian Springs magazine
Oversee all digital and social media communications (including: LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook in real time)
Oversee photography and video coverage for events both on and off campus, and obtain coverage for events that can be used to help us ‘tell the Springs story’ (i.e.: publicize events and achievements/milestones externally and internally for better public relations with all constituents)
Integrity, warmth, flexibility, confidence, a positive outlook and a good sense of humor.
Knowledge of and experience with successful communications programs and efforts.
Ability to interact effectively with and earn the respect of all the constituencies of the Indian Springs School community, including current and prospective families, the leadership team, staff, faculty, Board of Trustees, alumni, students, and friends of the School.
Demonstrated ability to manage, motivate, develop and mentor staff.
Knowledge of how to market and communicate the School’s mission, vision and values both internally and externally.
Excellent written and oral communication skills.
A strong commitment to an independent, globally-minded, pluralistic, progressive boarding school education.
5-10 years of communications experience required, preferably at an independent school and/or in higher education.
Employer will assist with relocation costs.
About Indian Springs School
Indian Springs School in Indian Springs, Alabama, brings together a diverse cohort of just over 300 boarding and day students in the 8th-12th grades on a 350-acre campus where nature serves as both inspiration and laboratory. Students from more than 20 states and countries work together with Springs’ 40 accomplished faculty members in a model of shared governance. Students discover their passions by taking part in everything from athletics to our renowned choir to student-run scholastic, service, and special-interest clubs. Our broad curriculum; idyllic setting; innovative independent study and virtual learning opportunities; international community; and cutting-edge, Silver LEED-certified classrooms (built in 2015) all enhance the dynamic teaching environment that opens doors to new ideas and new possibilities.
Founded in 1952 and led for its first 20 years by forward-thinking educator Dr. Louis E. “Doc” Armstrong, Springs has roots in the progressive educational philosophy of John Dewey, who inspired our motto: Learning through Living. Our mission is to develop in students a love of learning and creativity, a sense of integrity and moral courage, and an ethic of participa...tory citizenship with respect for individuality and independent thought.
Personalized learning has been a hallmark of an Indian Springs education since the school was founded. More than two dozen advanced courses are available through our participation in the prestigious Malone Schools Online Network, and endless possibilities for independent studies with our dedicated faculty allow our students to hone skills and explore interests.
Learning at Springs is both an individual pursuit and a collective endeavor, in which we seek to understand our world and one another. As members of a caring, international community, students from across the country and around the globe come together to learn and live side by side in order to broaden their experience and perspectives. Located just 15 minutes from Birmingham, which made civil rights history in 1963, Indian Springs draws from the city’s rich history as it highlights the importance of understanding other cultures, backgrounds, and viewpoints.
One of our best-known alumni, author and educator John Green ’95, has said that Springs is where “all at once, I became a learner ... because I found myself in a community of learners.” As members of this passionate community, Indian Springs students are ready for college and prepared for the world. Visit our website: www.indiansprings.org.