Job Description

Payroll Title:
University Communications
Hiring Pay Scale
$127,500 - $162,400/year
Hybrid Remote
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
Days, 8 hrs/day, Mon-Fri

#125320 Executive Dir. of Strategic Communications, VCHS

Filing Deadline: Mon 10/9/2023

UC San Diego values equity, diversity, and inclusion. If you are interested in being part of our team, possess the needed licensure and certifications, and feel that you have most of the qualifications and/or transferable skills for a job opening, we strongly encourage you to apply.

For the safety and well-being of the entire university community, the University of California requires, with few exceptions, that all students, faculty and staff be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus and influenza before they will be allowed on campus or in a facility or office. For more information visit: Flu Vaccine Mandate / COVID Vaccine Policy

UC San Diego is a student-centered, research-focused, service-oriented public university. Its culture of innovation and collaboration is supported by the 7th largest research budget in the U.S. Its rapidly transforming campus is becoming a major destination for students, patients, and the community. Inclusive excellence is at the core of UC San Diego's success.


University Communications is an award-winning, full-service division dedicated to increasing awareness, communicating impacts and spreading the value about UC San Diego to the region, the country and the world. The department works collaboratively with campus departments and the health system to convey the amazing things UC San Diego students, faculty, staff and alumni are doing and help UC San Diego departments implement strategies to reach their audience through marketing, brand management, news and media relations, social media, web and interactive communications, executive communications and visual communications. The department reports to the Chief Communications and Marketing Officer

UC San Diego Health Sciences encompasses UC San Diego Health, the region's only academic health system, UC San Diego School of Medicine, one of the nation's top research-intensive medical schools, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Southern California's first public school of pharmacy, and Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science. UC San Diego Health Sciences is a multibillion-dollar organization that comprises three professional schools, two hospitals, 20+ graduate degree programs, and 90+ core facilities and research units all working toward fulfilling its tripartite mission. Led by the Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences, it accounts for the majority of the University’s research and philanthropic portfolios, in addition to an expanding clinical footprint that spans the San Diego region. With more than 1,700 faculty and 17,000 staff, the Health Sciences is home to nationally recognized academic and clinical programs, and has been identified as one of the premier biomedical research institutions in the world. As a top-ranking, future oriented organization, UC San Diego Health Sciences offers challenging career opportunities in a fast-paced and innovative environment. The Vice Chancellor’s Office follows a progressive philosophy of career-path development for its employees.

The Executive Director of Strategic Communications for Health Sciences reports to the Chief Communications and Marketing Officer (CCMO) and the Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences (VCHS). The incumbent is responsible for the strategic communications for the Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences and for promoting the priorities and initiatives of the VCHS through the appropriate channels. The Executive Director of Strategic Communications for Health Sciences serves as a member of the CCMO’s leadership team and the VCHS leadership team, providing counsel and input in the execution of UC San Diego’s strategic communications plan in support of the academic profile.

Reporting to the CCMO, this position is responsible for the development and execution and measurement of a communications strategic plan to support the priorities, vision and initiatives of the Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences. The incumbent oversees communications for the office of the Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences and coordinates with University Communications for amplifying communications efforts with the School of Medicine, School of Public Health, and School of Pharmacy, additionally collaborates with the UC San Diego Health as it relates to their Public Relations operations. The incumbent works closely with senior administration to formulate and deliver university messages.

Supports the Vice Chancellor’s communications needs including support for talking points, remarks, website content, internal communications, and announcements regarding initiatives and priorities of the Vice Chancellor. Plans and coordinates media requests through University Communications and the Senior Executive Director of Public Relations.

The incumbent collaborates with University Communications colleagues to develop, implement and share news, content, collateral and campaigns that highlight UC San Diego, UC San Diego Health Sciences and UC San Diego Health both internally and externally with key stakeholders and target audiences.

The incumbent collaborates and coordinates research coverage with the Executive Director for Research Communications and the communications directors for each of the Health Science Schools including School of Medicine, Public Health and Pharmacy.

This incumbent will manage the communications staff within the Vice Chancellor of Health Science Office, which currently include science writers, communications support staff and communicators for the Moores Cancer Center, ACTRI, and Stanford Institute of Empathy and Compassion. The incumbent will also lead the efforts in the publishing of the annual Health Sciences’ Magazine "Discoveries.

This position is required to keep abreast of best practices in the field and remain up-to-date on current trends and new technologies. This position should anticipate change and ensure the organization is positioned to succeed.

Serves as a strong facilitator and liaison to advance the mission and goals of the organization. Promotes a culture of equity, inclusion, respect, and superior customer service to internal and external constituents. Actively, deliberately and thoughtfully infuses inclusivity and diversity throughout university communications.

  • A cover letter is required for a complete application.


  • Experience in managing a large, complex communications program, with excellent skills to develop, execute and measure a communication strategic plan. Experience highlighting the health sciences enterprise through public relations activities, marketing efforts, and content campaigns preferred.

  • Demonstrated mastery in providing advice and counsel to senior leadership on all aspects of communications, ranging from developing effective communication strategies to appropriately responding to inquiries regarding sensitive or complex issues or information.

  • Extensive writing experience with the skillset to write in a variety formats including science writing, features, news releases, talking points and other materials as needed. The ability to synthesize complex information in easily digestible content for a lay audiences.

  • Bachelor's degree in a related area with 7-10 years of relevant experience with increasing levels of responsibility and supervisory oversight, or equivalent experience / training.

  • APR certification preferred.

  • Excellent knowledge and understanding of all aspects of communications, including strategic planning for an array of issues and situations; demonstrated knowledge of various media venues, and a robust understanding of media, whether legacy, digital or social.

  • Proven skills in building and maintaining relationships with key stakeholders within organizations and identifying opportunities for collaboration and mutually beneficial public relations activities.

  • Excellent interpersonal and verbal skills with demonstrated ability to build strong personal relationships. Ability to interact with tact, diplomacy and discretion with individuals from a diverse array of backgrounds and organizational levels, treating all with dignity, equity, inclusion and respect.

  • Significant experience managing and leading teams, motivating and evaluating professional communications staff to produce high-quality work.

  • Excellent analytical, critical thinking, project management and problem recognition, avoidance and resolution skills.

  • Demonstrated competency and commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion.


  • Job offer is contingent upon satisfactory clearance based on Background Check results.Occasional evenings and weekends may be required.

Pay Transparency Act

Annual Full Pay Range: $92,600 - $232,200 (will be prorated if the appointment percentage is less than 100%)

Hourly Equivalent: $44.35 - $111.21

Factors in determining the appropriate compensation for a role include experience, skills, knowledge, abilities, education, licensure and certifications, and other business and organizational needs. The Hiring Pay Scale referenced in the job posting is the budgeted salary or hourly range that the University reasonably expects to pay for this position. The Annual Full Pay Range may be broader than what the University anticipates to pay for this position, based on internal equity, budget, and collective bargaining agreements (when applicable).

Job offer is contingent on successful engagement in the UC COVID-19 Vaccination program (fully vaccinated with documented proof or approved exception/deferral).

To foster the best possible working and learning environment, UC San Diego strives to cultivate a rich and diverse environment, inclusive and supportive of all students, faculty, staff and visitors. For more information, please visit UC San Diego Principles of Community.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, gender identity or sexual orientation. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see:

UC San Diego is a smoke and tobacco free environment. Please visit for more information.

Application Instructions

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