Community Relations Practicum
Spring: October 15
Summer: February 15
Fall: March 15
Primary Supervisor: Kevin Warner, Associate Director, Athletics Communications
Fall - one position
Spring - one position
Summer - hired on as-needed basis
Hours: Vary according to the structure of different programs. All 90-hour practicums will be approximately six or seven hours per week while 160-hour positions will be 10-12 hours per week. Exact hours can vary due to event coverage.
Purpose: Assist supervisor while serving as the primary office liaison for community relations within JMU Athletics. Promote JMU athletes interacting with the communities around them and the unique stories and experiences that develop outside of competition. Position will include all 18 JMU sports teams. Students should feel equipped to step into a community relations role in amateur or professional sports as a result of this experience.
Activities/Assignments: The following is a sampling of tasks assigned to practicum students:
- Internal communication - Working with supervisor to solicit assignment ideas from coaches, student-athletes and other athletics personnel
- Planning - develop plan for each event to include interviews, photography, video, research and media pitches
- Writing - Feature stories, press releases, media advisories
- Photo management - assigning photo needs, processing, archiving, forming web albums
- Video management - Develop videos when possible for community events for posting on web at JMUSports.com (not necessary to possess video editing skills, but willing to work closely with a video editor to ensure successful completion of projects)
- Publishing - written features/releases on JMUSports.com with accompanying photography/artwork, video pieces
- Pitches - Required to pitch at least three pieces to local/regional media with goal of at least one resulting in a published piece, including student handling media needs/appearances
- Interest in sports and more specifically in sport communication - best fit for practicum positions are sport communication minors as well as majors in sport management, communication, journalism, or SMAD
- Ability to work evenings and weekends as team activities will occur at varying times
- Detail-oriented communication - both written and oral
- Planning - develop detailed plans for coverage of each event. Unlike games that are more reactive to what happens on the field, the community relations position is more proactive to prepare for what will be happening.
- Multitasking - Not only handling the various duties of a single assignment but also managing multiple active assignments at one time