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Managing the ‘buzz’ News hits

I dare say there was a time when my job was more challenging. Don’t get me wrong, staying on top of today’s new-media explosion keeps my head spinning, but spreading the good news about RIT—the primary objective of University News—seems to be taking on a life of its own.

Not that many years ago, my colleagues and I would work our media counterparts pretty hard to get RIT stories placed in local, regional and national publications and broadcasts. We did a good job and had our share of successes. But after one story, it was usually on to the next. Not a lot of them had “legs,” meaning there wasn’t a great deal of sustained impact.

But that’s really changed. RIT’s growing competency related to innovation and creativity is creating some legitimate buzz. For example, the university has quickly made a name for itself in the area of sustainability. Since the formation last year of the Golisano Institute for Sustainability, the media is frequently tapping this valuable RIT resource for insights related to “green” initiatives. An article by EE Times published last week is only the latest example.

And there’s the upcoming opening of RIT Dubai. Our university is among some early adopters establishing programs in the Middle East. The Chronicle of Higher Education is among the publications taking notice. So too is PBS. A producer from the TV network contacted me late last week to request images of RIT’s local campus and the new facility in Dubai for this week’s edition of its program NOW.

Often these are not opportunities we’ve pitched to a specific media. These are examples of media coming to us. My biggest challenge now is managing all the request that come into this office from media looking to profile RIT in some form. It’s a challenge I gladly accept.


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