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Science Writer/Digital Content Specialist

Below you will find the details for the position including any supplementary documentation and questions you should review before applying for the opening.  To apply for the position, please click the Apply for this Job link/button.

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Please see Special Instructions for more details.

Please include as attachments a resume, cover letter, contact information for 3 references, and two product samples. One should be written for a general audience, and the second could be written for a technical/scientific audience or a link to a multimedia product.

Posting Details

Job Posting Information

Vacancy Type SHRA
Is Internal Transfer Only No
Time Limited? No
Time-Limited Appointment Length
Title Public Communication Specialist
Band Level Journey
Working Title Science Writer/Digital Content Specialist
Salary Range $29,743 - $79,362
Anticipated Hiring Range $45,000 -$52,000
Salary Grade Equivalency 69
Position Number 00103043
Work Schedule Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm; some weekend, evening and overnight travel required.
Full Time Equivalent (FTE) 1.00
Department 061501 - Sea Grant Program
Department Sea Grant Program
Job City & State Raleigh, NC
Primary Function of Organizational Unit

A federal-state partnership, North Carolina Sea Grant provides research, education and outreach opportunities relating to current issues affecting the North Carolina coast and its communities. Since 1970, Sea Grant has been a valuable resource in the state for scientists, educators, local officials, government agencies, coastal businesses and the public to find unbiased, scientifically sound information about the state’s coastal ecosystems. The program works with all campuses in the University of North Carolina system, as well as all institutes of higher education in the state. The program is part of the National Sea Grant network, with funding from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the state of North Carolina.

Essential Job Duties

The Science Writer/Digital Content Specialist communicates results of research projects and outreach efforts funded or administered by North Carolina Sea Grant. This includes working with Sea Grant colleagues — other communicators, management and extension team, as well as researchers and community partners to present timely information through varied communication venues. These include, but are not limited to, Coastwatch magazine, website, social media, story maps, reports for individual projects and the full program, videos, podcasts, newsletters, blog posts, program identity pieces, consumer information products and educational materials.
The overall goal is to provide timely information to varied audiences and to underscore the value and impacts of the interdisciplinary, statewide Sea Grant program. The Specialist will collaborate with the Water Resources Research Institute and other colleagues in the University of North Carolina system, the National Sea Grant network, and other local, state and national partners. The position is based in Raleigh, with some day and overnight travel required, including but not limited to the N.C. coastal region.

Other Work/Responsibilities

Preparing for and participating in events, including logistics, set-up, etc. Assisting the team in tasks as needed to support the overall North Carolina Sea Grant program.

The position requires travel to various sites across NC to carry out core responsibilities.

Minimum Experience/Education

Bachelor’s degree in a discipline related to the area of assignment; or an equivalent combination of training and experience.

All degrees must be received from appropriately accredited institutions.

Departmental Required Skills

An understanding of current and emerging issues facing N.C. coastal ecosystems, watersheds and communities.

Demonstrated ability to understand scientific data and environmental policy topics and summarize those results into terms understandable to varied audiences in Sea Grant’s role an “honest broker” of information.

Ability to interview a wide range of subjects, in person, or via phone or online communications, for stories or other communication projects.

Proficiency with Microsoft Word and experience with other Microsoft products.

Experience with lnDesign or similar graphics software, as well as other parts of Adobe Creative Suite and Acrobat.

Basic skills in GIS and mapping software as used in communications products.

Experience in a variety of social media platforms with identified success stories.

Experience in evaluating communications products and strategies to ensure best use of time and funding, return on investment, community use, etc.

Experience in WordPress and/or other online content management systems.

Ability to work well under pressure of multiple deadlines by prioritizing multiple work responsibilities.

Ability to work within a team that includes multiple offices and within a network that includes many states.

Preferred Experience, Skills, Training/Education

Experience in Sea Grant outreach or an extensive understanding of Sea Grant national or state mission and programs.

Five or more years of professional experience, or a combination of a relevant advanced degree and professional experience, in science, policy, and/or communications that could include but not be limited to journalism, marketing and public affairs, or scientific outreach.

At least one year of a science communications focus that can be demonstrated in product samples.

Experience in developing video and audio communications products.

Required License or Certification

A valid NC driver’s license is required and must be maintained as a condition of employment.

Special Instructions

Please include as attachments a resume, cover letter, contact information for 3 references, and two product samples. One should be written for a general audience, and the second could be written for a technical/scientific audience or a link to a multimedia product.

Job Open Date 08/08/2017
Must Be Open Until

Positions will be posted until 5:00 PM ET on this date. Positions remaining posted after this date are still accepting applications but may close at any time.
Is this position partially or fully funded on ARRA stimulus monies? No
Proposed Hire Date 09/25/2017
Alternate Option

If no applicants apply who meet the required competency level and training & experience requirements, then management may consider other applicants. Salary would be determined based on competencies, equity, budget, and market considerations.


NC State University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as an individual with a disability, or status as a protected veteran.

Individuals with disabilities requiring disability-related accommodations in the application and interview process, please call 919-515-3148.
Final candidates are subject to criminal & sex offender background checks. Some vacancies also require credit or motor vehicle checks. If highest degree is from an institution outside of the U.S., final candidates are required to have their degree verified at Degree must be obtained prior to start date.

NC State University participates in E-Verify. Federal law requires all employers to verify the identity and employment eligibility of all persons hired to work in the United States.

Supplemental Questions

Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).

  1. How did you learn of this opportunity?
    • NCSU Website
    • NCSU Executive Search Services
    • Other Online Job Board
    • Carolina Job Finder / Employment Guide
    • Job / Career Fair
    • The Chronicle of Higher Education
    • Professional Journal
    • Print Advertisement (Newspaper / Periodical)
    • Professional Organization
    • Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC)
    • Direct Contact from NCSU HR Representative / Recruiter
    • NCSU Employee Referral
    • Social Media (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Other)
    • Other
  2. If you learned about this vacancy from "other source" or "other website", please provide the source.

    (Open Ended Question)

  3. * Please select the response below that best describes your experience/education for the Public Communication Specialist position.
    • Bachelor's, Master's, or Doctorate in a related field
    • Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's, or Doctorate in an unrelated field and four years of related experience
    • Associate's in a related and two years of related experience
    • Combination of post-high school education and/or experience in a related field to equal at least 4 years (ex. 1 year towards a related degree and 3 years of related experience)
    • Did not complete high school but have a combination of high school education and related experience to equal 8 years (ex. 1 year of high school and 7 years of related experience)
    • None of the above
  4. * Describe any related Sea Grant experience.

    (Open Ended Question)

  5. * Describe any prior experience in summarizing complex scientific data.

    (Open Ended Question)

  6. * A valid NC driver’s license is required for this position and must be maintained as a condition of employment. Do you have (or will you obtain) a valid NC driver’s license and maintain it as a condition of employment?
    • Yes, I have a valid NC driver’s license and understand that it must be maintained as a condition of employment.
    • Yes, while I do not currently have a valid NC driver’s license, I will obtain it and maintain it as a condition of employment.
    • No, I do not currently have a valid NC driver’s license, and I cannot or will not obtain it.
  7. * Briefly describe your Experience with graphic design software (such as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign).

    (Open Ended Question)

Application Materials Required

Required Documents
  1. Resume
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Other Document (1)
  4. Contact Information for References
  5. Short Writing Sample
Optional Documents