Effective as of: 11.15.2020
Policy for Publication
Policy Number: INAD20200005
The AUA Office of Communications (hereafter Communications) is responsible for managing the University’s relationships and communication with journalists and media outlets. To ensure proper institutional brand management, the President or the Office of Communications identifies who can speak to the media on behalf of the AUA.
While faculty and researchers serve as experts in their respective fields and manage their own media availability separate from Communications, faculty and researchers should notify Communications of their interaction with the media, if they intend to speak on behalf of the AUA or if they mention their affiliation with the AUA. Communications aims to provide the necessary training and support whenever possible.
All AUA press releases, statements, quotes, briefings or comments as well as all media engagement, outreach and invites to media and journalists for AUA activities and events are coordinated and approved by Communications.
Media inquiries and requests for media coverage should be submitted at least one week in advance and in compliance with the procedures outlined by Communications.
AUA Employee Responsibilities
If contacted by the media, University employees should notify Communications as soon as possible. Contact includes any requests for ‘off the record’ or ‘background’ briefings.
When making a comment as an identified University Employee, it is important to consider how comments will reflect on the reputation of University. Members of the community may be asked by Communications to give interviews and make appearances based on their areas of expertise. Communications will coordinate and work with nominated spokespeople to ensure that the University is aware of all University communication with the media, speaks with a consistent message, and is able to protect and promote the University as appropriate. Communications also provides professional support to individuals and employees who engage with the media, so that the University can be protected in the event of any negative coverage.
Public comments by University employees in their capacity as private individuals are permitted under the following guidelines:
- Employees expressing personal views should clearly indicate that the views being expressed are personal and not necessarily the views of AUA;
- Due to the inextricable link to an employee’s role, any comments on subjects core to the institution’s mission – such as education, universities or teaching – should be made in a professional capacity;
- It is expected that a University member will not publicly criticize AUA. Anyone with concerns about AUA should seek to resolve the matter internally through an appropriate line of reporting.
This policy does not intend to restrict:
- employees from exercising their right to freedom of expression,
- faculty and staff members from engaging in scholarly activities or personal involvement in community activities,
- faculty and staff members’ rights to express personal opinions on University or non-University actions and policies, or
- faculty or staff members from commenting on matters of public concern.
Media: refers to but is not limited to local, national, and international newspapers, magazines, newsletters, online publications, student media, and broadcast outlets such as radio, television, and podcasts.