Talking to the Media

Sometimes the news media may bypass University Communications and contact you directly. In those situations, please contact University Communications so we can help you use the opportunity to your best advantage.

For instance, we can speak with the reporter to get a better understanding of the direction of the story. We can help you prepare and think through possible questions so you’re not caught off guard and unsure of how you can/should respond. We can also broker deadlines and turn down any requests you are not comfortable with or don’t have time for. And we can help leverage your efforts to garner even more publicity through our social media channels.

Sometimes University Communications will reach out to offer you a media opportunity. Please respond to our requests promptly, even if you can’t do the interview. Reporters work on tight deadlines and if we don’t respond, we may lose the opportunity.

Once you’ve agreed to an interview, here’s a few things to consider:

  • Don’t feel rushed to respond. Give yourself time to think through what you want to say.
  • Provide some background material that will help the reporter understand the topic you're discussing.
  • Give simple, direct answers. Be brief, as reporters are most likely to use short quotes and sound bites. Avoid jargon.
  • Remember that nothing is “off the record” unless it’s formally agreed upon.
  • If there are errors in the final story, contact University Communications to discuss a plan of action.