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The Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases in the Cumming School of Medicine invites applications for a Communications Specialist. This Full-time Fixed Term position is for approximately 1 year (based on length of grant funding), with the possibility of extension.

The Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseasea is made up of over 100 clinicians and scientists who are working towards making discoveries to change the lives of those suffering from chronic diseases. Infections, inflammation and chronic disease are great strengths in research at the University of Calgary. As such, Infections, Inflammation and Chronic Disease in the Changing Environment (IICD) has been identified as one of the six strategic research themes at the University of Calgary within the ?Eyes High' strategy.

The Communications Specialist will provide specialized depth and breadth of expertise in advising the Director and Snyder Executive Committee with regard to implementation of communications, both within and beyond the Snyder Institute and may liaise with fund-development. They are key within the Snyder Institute responsible for supporting the strategic direction and managing the implementation of communication strategies on behalf of Snyder Institute and, as appropriate, the IICD.

The Snyder Institute Communications Specialist will work closely with the Director Programs and Business, along with responsibilities for bridging between the Snyder Institute and IICD, the Vice-President (Research) and the Cumming School of Medicine's Communications & Media Relations team.

The hours of work may include after-hours and weekends.


Summary of Key Responsibilities (job functions include but are not limited to):

Communication and Media Relations Duties:

  • Primary contact responsible for communications liaison within Snyder and IICD and with key partners within and outside the University of Calgary.
  • Responsible for the communication plans of Snyder Institute and IICD.
  • Responsible for the development and implementation of the Snyder Institute and IICD communications strategy designed to increase awareness and advance the mission internally, within the University of Calgary and other partner organizations as well as to the community at large.
  • Effectively plan, organize and stage communication and media for a wide variety of events each year, such as: program launches and faculty and staff events
  • local, national and international symposiums, research days, recognition events, seminars, Meet and Greet events, town hall meetings and social events.
  • Responsible for preparation and dissemination of communications with internal stakeholders.
  • Provide strategic assessment and make recommendations to leadership of events and tactics to determine feasibility, value to the Snyder Institute and IICD, as well as propose and implement appropriate changes/additions/deletions to the annual event schedule.
  • Prepare and design regular communication products such as Snyder Institute and IICD bulletins and newsletters.
  • Create, manage, update, and maintain content for the Snyder Institute and IICD Snyder Institute websites and social media related to both.

Administration and General Duties:

  • Point of contact (office, phone, email, etc.) for the Snyder Director with regard to communications and media relations.
  • May be required to attend meetings with the Snyder director and to transcribe minutes.
  • Deal with multiple, shifting priorities and ensures that deadlines and commitments are kept.


  • Post-secondary diploma/degree in a relevant area such as communications, public relations, marketing, journalism
  • 7-10 years of related experience, preferably in a post-secondary or health care setting, or a large complex organization
  • Familiarity with one or more of the following: the health technology sector; government stakeholders; UCalgary; Industry; Medical Education; and health sector stakeholders
  • Significant communication and administrative experience with emphasis on decision-making and highly developed organizational skills and ability to anticipate needs, plan, organize, coordinate, and perform work with little or no direction.
  • Well-honed interpersonal and communication skills required in dealing with a range of situations, which may include complex, sensitive and confidential issues.
  • Excellent communicator within a team and in-depth knowledge of Cumming School of Medicine and University culture and operating procedures is considered an asset.
  • Demonstrates professionalism, discretion, courtesy, and respect in all interactions with internal and external clients creating a positive image the Snyder Institute, the IICD, the Cumming School of Medicine and the University of Calgary.
  • Ability to operate within a complex, multi-faceted work environment and be a strong team player.
  • Capability to adjust work schedule to meet multiple demands and pressures.
  • Experience producing a variety of communication vehicles aimed at various audiences.
  • Experience working with the media both in a reactive and strategic planning capacity.
  • Experience with the planning, scheduling, and production of print and electronic products.
  • Experience planning and executing events for various sized groups.
  • Ability to effectively work with external vendors and manage workflow.
  • High level of proficiency in writing and editing a variety of documents for a wide range of audiences/stakeholders.
  • Must be flexible and able to perform multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment, often with shifting priorities.
  • Must have demonstrated ability to provide a consistent high level of service.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office applications such as Word, Excel, Access and PowerPoint.
  • Proficient with industry standard design and production software, such as Adobe InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop.
  • Familiarity with shooting, editing and producing still images and video segments is considered an asset

Application Deadline: October 6, 2020

We would like to thank all applicants in advance for submitting their resumes. Please note, only those candidates chosen to continue on through the selection process will be contacted.

Additional Information

This position is part of the AUPE bargaining unit, and falls under the Specialist/Advisor Job Family, Phase III.

To find out more about management and staff opportunities at the University of Calgary and all we have to offer, view our Management and Staff Careers website. For more information about the Cumming School of Medicine visit Careers in the Cumming School of Medicine.

About the University of Calgary

  • a living, growing and youthful institution that embraces change and opportunity with a can-do attitude. Located in the nation's most enterprising city, the university is making tremendous progress on its Eyes High journey to be recognized as one of Canada's top five research universities, grounded in innovative learning and teaching and fully integrated with the community it both serves and leads. The University of Calgary inspires and supports discovery, creativity and innovation across all disciplines. For more information, visit

The University of Calgary recognizes that a diverse staff/faculty benefits and enriches the work, learning and research experiences of the entire campus and greater community. We are committed to removing barriers that have been historically encountered by some people in our society. We strive to recruit individuals who will further enhance our diversity and will support their professional success while they are here. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply, however preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada.