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CIRES/NSIDC Communications Specialist, Science Communications Group


Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES)

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado

Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Job Summary

The CIRES/NSIDC Communications Specialist reports to the NSIDC Communications Lead and will be a member of the Science Communications Group (SCG). The CIRES/NSIDC Communications Specialist will serve as the primary media contact for NSIDC’s thriving press program and will manage NSIDC’s social media presence. In addition, the Communications Specialist will develop print and web content to help NSIDC establish a brand and communicate its vision. The CIRES/NSIDC Communications Specialist will also support the SCG as it hones an integrated communications plan for engaging a variety of stakeholders, including scientists and researchers, decision makers, and people seeking information about the cryosphere. As a member of a group that provides cross-center service, the Communications Specialist is expected to help the SCG meet its objectives, respond to events, and serve multiple, internal “clients” while meeting production deadlines for projects.

Who We Are

At CIRES, the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, more than 800 environmental scientists work to understand the dynamic Earth system, including people’s relationship with the planet. CIRES is a partnership of NOAA and the University of Colorado Boulder, and our areas of expertise include weather and climate, changes at the Earth’s poles, air quality and atmospheric chemistry, water resources, and solid Earth sciences. Our vision is to be instrumental in ensuring a sustainable future environment by advancing scientific and societal understanding of the Earth system.

The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC),, part of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado at Boulder, serves as a national information and referral center in support of snow and ice research. NSIDC is a trusted source of cryospheric data and services, and is a leader in research and development within this field.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

  • Serve as primary media contact: respond to and coordinate press inquiries; liaise with funding agency media contacts; develop press releases and advisories; oversee large biannual media announcements in coordination with science team; oversee tracking and archiving of media clips.
  • Manage and grow NSIDC’s social media presence, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn; develop strategy and policies supporting social media activities; research and propose additional social media technology opportunities as appropriate.
  • Contribute to NSIDC digital outreach strategy; partner with UI/UX specialist to design, create and edit web pages and blogs using content management systems as appropriate.
  • Develop written content for NSIDC web site and blogs, including general and technical scientific and educational content, for a wide array of audiences.
  • Draft outreach materials, such as brochures, fact sheets and talking points.
  • Assist in the development and execution of NSIDC’s communications plans and programs supporting internal and external communications.

What You Should Know

CIRES commits to inclusive excellence by advancing equity and diversity in all that we do. We are an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer, and encourage applications from members of historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, LGBTQ community members, and others who demonstrate the ability to help us achieve our vision of a diverse and inclusive community.

What We Can Offer

We can offer a competitive salary, commensurate with experience.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be Collaborative. Be Impactful. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • Bachelor's Degree in Journalism, Communications, Public Relations, Science Communication, or a combination of focus areas relevant to the position.
  • 3-5 years serving in a media relations function.
  • 3+ years developing, managing and using social media technology on behalf of an organization.

What You Will Need

  • Demonstrated ability to integrate social media and communication strategies into broader communications objectives.
  • Ability to communicate complex and technical concepts to a variety of audiences.
  • Outstanding oral and written communication skills.
  • Proficient with MS Office products.
  • Comfort working in web content management programs such as Drupal.
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to multi-task.
  • Self-starter who can solve problems and meet deadlines with minimal supervision.

What We Would Like You To Have

  • Ability to effectively communicate scientific and/or technical information.
  • Basic digital media/multimedia production, such as video, photography or data images.
  • Ability to effectively partner with graphic designers, web developers, technical writers and/or educators on communication activities.
  • Ability to develop and execute communications strategies and campaigns.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:
  1. Resume/CV
  2. Cover letter briefly describing your qualifications, professional goals, and specific interest in this position
  3. Proof of degree in either a transcript confirming highest degree or a copy of diploma
  4. List of contact information for 3 references who would be willing to write a recommendation letter if you are selected as the finalist.
    • If you are selected as the finalist, we will contact you through email and request that you submit 1 name and email of a reference who will be asked to submit a letter of recommendation (can be one of the 3 noted above). This information will be kept confidential and viewable only the search committee.
Screening will begin immediately and applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

Posting Contact Name: Nancy Lathrop

Posting Contact Email:

The University of Colorado is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer